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AUG 16, 2016

NR # 4294

The youth should be part of the solution and not the problem
A youthful lawmaker has stressed the need to review the focus of the countrys
education program to make sure that Filipino youths are trained to be critical thinkers and
effective communicators.
This is why I want a strengthened liberal arts programming in schools to teach the
youth to be critical thinkers, how to be effective communicators and find new solutions to
old problems, Pangasinan Rep. Christopher Toff de Venecia said, adding there must be
a balance between science and the arts.
De Venecia, together with Kabataan Party-list Rep. Sarah Jane Elago and former
Kabataan Party-list Rep. Terry Ridon, are co-sponsors of the Youth for Change Forum at
the House of Representatives attended by the different youth leaders in the country.
For her part, Rep. Elago expressed her appreciation of the strong support being
extended by Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and other leaders and members of the 17th
Congress to the programs promoting youth welfare.
De Venecia urged youth leader-participants to put our ideas together to galvanize
the youth for the promotion of peace and justice in our country, as a way of drumbeating
the August 12 celebration of International Youth Day.
Forums like this are important, because they provide us with opportunities to speak
our minds and elevate our issues in a concerted and harmonized manner, he said,
stressing that the youth should be the vanguard and not the burden to society.
While stressing the need to strengthen the liberal arts programs to make the youth
active participants in nation building, de Venecia did not discount the vitality of the socalled STEM (Science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects and courses in
the current education programs to national progress.
By promoting liberal arts programming, the young lawmaker said: tinuturuan tayo
kung papano bumuo ng mga katanungang magbubukas sa ating isipan at humanap ng
mga makabagong sulusyon sa lumang problema.
By discussing what could be done about our problems and challenges, we can also
devise new plans and ways to encourage the leaders of government and in the private
sector to support and invest in the causes of young people, de Venecia said.
In the wake of the current war against illegal drugs, De Venecia took time to
commend President Duterte for the unrelenting drive against this social menace.

Relative to our convention theme: Peace in our Community, Peace in our

Nation, I believe that drug addiction is perhaps, the most terrible and terrifying problem
of todays youth. I commend President Duterte for passionately shedding light on this
matter, de Venecia declared.
He cited the First U.N. Secretary General Youth Envoy Ahmad Alhendawi who said
that there are almost two billion young people in the world today, representing a quarter of
the world population.
In our country, he added, the Filipino youth, aged 40 years old and below,
comprises 70.83 percent of the total population.
With that number, imagine what we can do, if we unite as forerunners of change.
Let us become part of the solution rather than a deterrent to moral and socio-economic
reform, The young lawmaker concluded. (30) dpt