Dear fellows and supporters:
This blog is dedicated to the many unrecognized efforts and untold stories of young people that contribute to make this world a more beautiful place to live.
As one of the few grassroots organizations privileged to have access to the internet, we task our self to share and connect to the world the power of the youth, their dreams and efforts and their leadership that gives them the power over their lives that makes a difference.
2005 YAN Fellow
25 successor generation leaders of the Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay who have served the organization as peer educators completes a Behavior Change Entrepreneurship training and embarks in a 1,094 days MDG countdown which started on December 1, 2012 at the launching of their own version of Getting to Zero campaign to contribute to the country's effort to rollback HIV and AIDS by 2015.
The 5-day training consist of a 3-day River of Life Portfolio workshop and horizontal learning exchange exercises held in Guimaras on October 27-29, 2012 and a 2-day hands-on field work. The activity was participated by 25 emergent leaders from the at-risk youth groups, male sex worker and drug user communities from Iloilo, Cebu and Manila. The workshop and learning exchange was hosted and facilitated by 5 senior youth leaders from the TAYO-award winning Chapter of KGPP based in Iloilo City.
Six stakeholders from the Academe, Local Government, Non Government Organization, the organization's Board of Trustees and a partner CBO enjoined the participants in their capacity-development journey. Florabel Santacera-Suarez, Psychometrician from the Central Philippine University, Alma Bulawan, President of the Buklod ng Kababaihan based in Olongapo City a CBO of women survivors of prostitution, and Ma. Marcella Montero from Museo Pambata served as observers, mentors and critique for the performance of the trainees. Hon. Jorge Duron, Chairman of the Task Force on Moral and Values Formation (Formerly Taskforce Adams Apple) also graced the event with an inspirational message from the Office of Hon. Mayor Jed Mabilog and Miss Nemia Nerecina, the organization's Social Worker supervised the activity.
The capacity-building activity allowed the organization to develop a national pool of behavior change entrepreneurs who will serve as the National River of Life Facilitation Team for the roll-outs that will be undertaken to HIV priority areas of the organization for young people at-risk of HIV until 2015. Each will also be tasked to implement his own Local Plan of Action by rolling-out and using the River of Life Tools to promote behavior change among his peer group and implement the "Be a Hero Campaign" with their local service providers.
Rogue Heroes Telling their Stories
The "Get to Zero and Be a Hero" Campaign is linked to the principles of Dignity, Rights and Responsibility in which the organization promote for the well-being of its members. The organization wishes to capture the small yet heroic deeds of disheartened communities and recognise the change that occur in them and rebuild their self worth in their bid in protecting themselves, their peers, their sexual partners and the public.
Mark Reynard Sakay of Tondo, founder of PEERS Network Philippines and current Executive Vice President of KGPP shared his stories of change after being recruited by the Manila Social Hygiene Clinic as Peer Educator during an interview on December 1, 2012:
"My negative perception of the clinic changed, previously we ran away every time they visit our area, now we realise that they are friendly and willing to reach us out for our health. My feeling of pity to my very young peers who are engaged in sex work was turned into a responsibility, I now bring them to the Clinic for them to access free services, counselling and condoms. And my reputation among my peers was changed into being their hero for HIV prevention".
He adds, "during our River of Life Workshop, I shared these changes and I am hopeful that we young sex workers despite being stigmatised and ostracised by the larger society, we can still be a hero to our own peers and communities. We can also contribute to the Millennium Development Goals and the Three Zero Campaign. I find it meaningful and fulfilling that in our behavior change communication work, we can use the River of Life Tools in the “Get to Zero and Be a Hero” campaign to influence our peers and our sexual partners to get self tested and prevent acquiring or transmitting HIV".
See Mark's message about the River of Life to his peers here
One of the pioneers of the development of the River of Life Tool, Mark Vincent Velasco of Iloilo and current Vice President for the Visayas supported the "Be a Hero" concept. He expressed his feeling of being encouraged reminiscent to his 8-year peer education work:
"My peer education work helped me in recovering my life from addiction; I have forgotten to recognise my efforts toward recovery that I have sustained for 8 years through the help of UNICEF. I also did not have the opportunity in rolling out my skills to those who replaced me in the previous condition that I once occupied. Only until this learning exchange that made me feel like a hero"
He adds: "I am always reminded by of our organizational motto: 'success without successor is failure' and every time I look back, i see myself begging around and being exposed to many risky and clandestine behaviors. Now, I see same conditions on the streets and I feel helpless despite the life choices I made that made me crossed 'the brighter side of the [River of] life'. But not today, I will make my life an inspiration and example and will continue KGPP's work in helping youth in crossing the safer side of the River of Life in which I also do at the Iloilo Social Hygiene Clinic where I also serve as a peer educator".
Walking the Street of Hope: Macmac's Story 5 years ago from UNICEF's "Real Lives"
Being Able to Contribute to the MDGs
The Philippines according to the UNAIDS fall short in achieving its commitment in halting and reversing the trend of HIV and AIDS by 2015. In its latest report, UNAIDS said that the country’s incidence rate of HIV infection among adults aged 15–49 years old from 2001–2011 has been increasing by 25 percent. As the country struggle to meet this crucial MDG commitment, the Kabataang Gabay sa Positiong Pamumuhay is also alarmed since majority of its male sex worker and drug user constituents are not yet reached by HIV and AIDS programs due to the stigma and the criminal nature of their work.
John Piermont Montilla, the Council President shared the cause of being of KGPP and its TAYO journey uring the 10th National Search for Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) of the Philippines on December 3, 2012 in Manila.
“Our cause of being is the extreme disenfranchisement of exploited boys and men in Philippine society due to the double standards that consider their abuse a rite of passage and being blamed of the abuse they experience... Even in our HIV prevention work, those who are engaged in sex work and those afflicted with drugs are one of the most marginalised sectors and having diseases like HIV, TB and STIs adds to their ostracization.
He adds, "It is very difficult to rise above your own victimisation or marginalisation and only few of us have the courage to come out in the open, be an example and become an 'emergent leader'. Emergence leadership is the kind of leadership we cultivate at KGPP, its a kind of leadership that creates heroes out of being wounded, and make dreams happen out of being downtrodden... an emergent leader inspires people to dream and makes dreams happen. This keep ourselves being reminded of our motto 'Success Without Successor is Failure'!”
The support of the Starbucks Youth Action Grants is helpful in cultivating emergent ledership by bringing out unheard voices, empowering them with tools to ripple transformation to the successor generation and capture their work and performance and link results to the Millenium Development Goals
During the roll-out planning session, an idea emerged on how to use the River of Life Tool for the Getting to Zero Campaign of UNAIDS and trickle it down to the community. Among the slogans suggested, the “Thrice the Zero and be a Hero” catchword was chosen and a consensus was built to integrated it as part of the 3-year (2013-2015) Strategic Plan of KGPP linked to the MDGs and detailed in the Local Plan of Action of the trained entrepreneurs.
Anchoring to the UNAIDS Strategic Vision on Getting to Zero 2011-2015
The Thrice the Zero, and Be a Hero Campaign echoes the UNAIDS Strategy that aim to advance global progress in achieving country set targets for universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and halt and reverse the spread of HIV and contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development goals by 2015. It was adopted by Programme Coordinating Board in December 2010. As the country struggles to meet its MDG committments, KGPP launched a community response that may augment the efforts through the "Be a Hero Campaign"
The Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay anchors its development work for its members on the foundational principles of dignity, rights and responsibility across development themes of leadership, stewardship and entrepreneurship. In its medium term plan (2013-2015) the organization integrated the Get to Zero and Be a Hero Campaign and linked the principle of dignity to zero discrimination, the principle of rights to zero AIDS-related deaths, and the principle of responsibility to zero new HIV infections for the communities of sex workers and those afflicted with drugs.
To promote "Zero Discrimination", we benchmark that by 2015, at least 80% of our members who access health services reported that they are satisfied with the services delivered to them at the social hygiene clinics, TB Dots Centers and other health care providers and those who expereince discrimination and stigmatisation reports or documents their abuse to legitimate redress mechanisms. We will ensure that we have established partnership with local service providers and install mechanism where services are delivered with utmost respect and dignity for our members.
For "Zero AIDS-related death" we benchmark that by 2015, our sex workers and drug user members who are found HIV, TB and STI positive has been treated and referred to other life-saving services. We will promote the principle of human rights in their universal access and utilisation of prevention, treatment and care to HIV as well as treatment of substance abuse and impact of sexual violence to their 'being'.
And for "Zero Infections" we benchmark that by 2015, at least 80 percent of our members reached by the campaign perfects the UNGASS HIV knowledge scores, 80 percent has accessed the social hygiene clinics and/or TB DOTS centers and at least 30 percent got self tested to STIs, HIV and TB. We will promote the principle of responsibility in our behavior change communications messages by delivering youth-friendly messages on responsible, safe and satisfying sex life whilst inculcating accountability to own, to sexual partners, and peers' behavior.
More about our Strategic Plan
To stimulate creativity, each behavior change entrepreneurs will use the River of Life tools to get their own selves to zero (zero risk of transmission or aqcuisition of HIV, TB, STIs) as well as to their peer groups. They will also allowed to develop their own campaign by selecting any of the themes (dignity-zero discrimination, rights-AIDS-related deaths, and responsibility-zero infection) that matter them most and develop an individual "Get to Zero and Be a Hero Campaign" messages to be promoted in a form of posters, t-shirts, stickers, arts and crafts and digital media that allows them to share their messages and their stories of transformation.
The ROL is part of the "My Change Journey life competence-building curriculum of the Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay that operationalizes the organization’s behaviour change entrepreneurship platform for its youth leaders, behaviour change communicators, peer educators and peer learners. The curriculum seeks to meet the three organizational objectives of the organization that blend community leadership, stewardship, and entrepreneurship aimed at sustaining the change its members want to be and ripple this change to the people in their spheres of influence and the successor generation.
The tools are a set of self-driven instructional materials that encourages learner autonomy, competence building and accountability towards own behavior change. It offers behavioral impact to exercise control over own behavior and evaluate own outcome that complements the interventions already available among service providers. The tools also play a key role in connecting the most marginalized at risk community groups to their respective local service providers that are useful for their effort to generate data and strategic information valuable for policy development, service delivery, and program implementation.
See sample river of life output here that is used to inform behavior change programming
The River of Life Tools has a seven year research and development history, it was developed by 30 peer educators of the organization under the “Skills for Life Project” supported by UNICEF under its country program for children HIV prevention project in 2005-2009. The peer educators was inspired by the change that is occurring in themselves and wanted to sustain them by developing their own tools which they can use in periodically assessing their own risk behaviours, benchmark their own change goals, measure their own progress and celebrate own change
The pioneers named their tool “Self-measurement of Change Tools” and found its way to be presented at the 5th asia pacific conference on reproductive and sexual health and rights in Beijing China. In 2008, the tools was enrolled in the AIDS Competence program funded by the Asian Development Bank through the Constellation for Life Competence (formerly AIDS Competence) based in Thailand. The Constellation introduced the self-assessment, the river and stairs diagram and the SALT appreciative inquiry approach, and after 3-years of mentoring and through the creativity organization, the self-measurement of change tools evolved into what is now called the River of Life Tools.
For more information about the River of Life Tools, please click this link:
PEERS Network Philippines: Bringing HIV prevention messages to communities needing it most
The PEERS Network Philippines (Peers Enabling Each other's Recovery Social Network) is a social enterprise outfit of KGPP with members who exhibited exemplary performance in their peer education work. It was founded by six experienced peer educators and emergent leaders of KGPP with the aim of venturing themselves and tasked to set own behavior change as an example to their peers and ripple transformation to the younger generations whilst taking the lead in making change happen in a way that is fun, engaging and income generating. The network was established in January 2010.
Currently through the PEERS Network community chapters, there are 35 Community Chapters with 366 peer leaders strategically positioned at the corridors of exploitation across the trade and transport centres and entertainment hubs in urban cities and the tourism hotspots connected via the nautical highway, and the drug-afflicted communities in the Philippines.
During the 12th National Council strategic planning held in Iloilo City on December 2010, the organization's National Council formulated a Strategic Plan to scale up the River of Life Tools through the PEERS Network Community Chapters who will be tasked to rollout the River of Life to their groups and link their organizations to the Social Hygiene Clinics of their respective towns.
25 Behavior Change Entrepreneurs' Challenge: 'Get to Zero and Be a Hero' by 2015
Through Starbucks support, 25 peer educators and 5 senior youth leaders from 30 PEERS Network Community Chapters were selected and will be undergo capacity-building series, roll-outs, behavior change communications and all-year-round campaign and social mobilisation activities until 2015.
Philippine-based organization tackling HIV prevention among unreached young male sex worker groups is recipient of the 2012 Starbucks Youth Action Grants from the International Youth Foundation
Manila, Philippines – My River of Life, My Toolkit for Change Initiative of the Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay (KGPP), Inc. is among the 19 youth-led programs in 18 countries selected by Starbucks and the International Youth Foundation (IYF) to receive support through the Starbucks™ Shared Planet™ Youth Action Grants program, a key component of the Starbucks™ commitment to communities
The River of Life Tools (ROL) is part of the community stewardship portfolio of the organization which seek to promote accountability of young at-risk youth toward own and their peer groups’ behavior. Through a learner-centered approach for behavior change using appreciative inquiry principles for learning facilitation, the tools play a key role in connecting the most marginalized HIV community groups to their respective local testing and treatment centers. The tools is also useful for local governments in their effort to generate data and strategic information valuable for policy development, service delivery and HIV prevention, treatment and care programming tailored to the needs of diverse most-at-risk groups.
Through the organization’s social enterprise, the Peers Enabling Each other’s Recovery Social Network (PEERS Network Philippines) established in 2010 and is strategically positioned at the corridors of exploitation in the country; the Youth Action Grant will enable the development of the River of Life Portfolios of youth groups afflicted by sexual exploitation, drug abuse and human trafficking. The project will also attempt to address the emerging driver of HIV risk behaviors among youth groups of boys 8-17 years old addicted to computer gaming whose subsistence to computer addiction is maintained by sexual exploitation.
Starbucks has been supporting KGPP since 2008 and for this year, the support will capacitate 30 emergent male sex worker leaders for the horizontal learning exchange with Iloilo-based members who pioneered the development of the ROL Tool. The exchange will develop an ROL package tailored to the context of Manila and Cebu based members and to initiate discussions and dialogue with stakeholders to explore the evolving vulnerability of male sex workers and address their role as a bridge population potential of transmitting HIV from most-at-risk to the general population.
Prevention messages will tackle male-to-male sexual contacts, consistent condom use to both intimate and commercial sexual partners, referrals for HIV testing and confidential and private medical appointments to trusted providers for those diagnosed HIV-positive.
17-year old Mark Reynard Sakay, the Executive Vice President of the National Council of the association based in Manila said during his presentation of the River of Life of PEERS Network in Tondo:
“The River of Life Tools helped me in becoming aware of the level of risk of my sexual behavior and this alarmed me that I am endangering my intimate partner who is also a sex worker and my commercial sexual partners who are my sources of income:… The Tools empowered me to protect them both"
He added, "I find it very difficult to mobilize my peers to get self tested for HIV or treated for STI at the Manila social hygiene clinic due to our perceived unwelcoming and negative attitude of clinic staff towards our work. After our River of Life Workshop, this perception changed, my first STI screening was a very friendly experience, this was followed by an HIV testing and they were actually very accommodating. Dr. Diana Mendoza, the clinic physician made me as one of the clinic’s peer educators, and I received a training".
"As a Peer Educator however, educating my peers is not enough… they would not believe me since I did not completed high school. So, other than educating them, I require myself to bring them to the clinic so that they will believe that what I tell them is true about HIV… and they believe".
The story of Mark is one among the hundreds of untold stories of marginalized yet promising young people leading positive change in their communities worldwide and Starbucks Youth Action Grants supports these youth-led development endeavors. Mark’s work is also one of the youth-led grassroots actions in which his association strives to capture and to communicate accomplishments to local and national authorities and link results to the Millennium Development Goals where the Philippines fall short in achieving its commitment in halting and reversing the trend of HIV and AIDS by 2015.
There is an estimated projection of HIV cases to reach 46,000 by end of 2015 from 6,015 HIV cases reported as of end of 2010 (Spectrum Projection, UNAIDS, 2010) and the Philippines suffered a setback by being identified as one of the seven countries with more than 25% increase of HIV infection. The latest HIV registry recorded that from 1984 to 2012, there were 8,576 HIV Ab sero-positive cases reported, of which 7,601 or 89% were asymptomatic and 975 or 11% were AIDS cases.
According to the National Epedimiology Center or the NEC, the newly diagnosed HIV cases in the Philippines just this month of September 2012, there were 316 new HIV Ab sero-positive individuals confirmed by the STD/AIDS Cooperative Central Laboratory (SACCL). This was 25% higher compared to the same period last year. Most of the cases (96%) were males. The median age was 28 years (age range: 16-70 years). The 20-29 year (57%) age group had the most number of cases. Fifty-four percent of the reported cases were from the National Capital Region (NCR). Reported modes of transmission were sexual contact and needle sharing among injecting drug users. Males having sex with other males (82%) were the predominant type of sexual transmission.
John Piermont Montilla YouthActionNet Global Fellow of 2005 and the association’s National Council President said during the 15th National Council Strategic Planning held in Guimaras on October 27-29, 2012 that:
"The support of Starbucks has been significant in the 10 year efforts of the association in blending community leadership, stewardship and entrepreneurship that crystallized into one unified behavior change platform dubbed as the “Me, My Peers and My Community: A Behavior Change Entrepreneurship framework. A framework that creates a peer environment that enables behavior change to happen in a way that is fun, exciting and income generating."
"To measure behavior change outcomes, the River of Life serves as the tool to measuring behavior change performance, understanding the learning processes and styles of various peer groups, and keeping track of individual and peer groups’ progress toward their own behavior change goals and their life aspiration."
Recipients of the Youth Action Grants were chosen through a competition established by IYF and Starbucks in 2008 in order to makes grants available to young leaders who have completed IYF’s YouthActionNet® fellowship program. YouthActionNet® strengthens and scales up the impact of youth-led social ventures around the world. A committee comprised of IYF staff and Starbucks partners (employees) selected the final grant recipients.
To learn more about the Starbucks™ Shared Planet™ Youth Action Grants program and the planned activities of all 19 grant recipients, visit: www.youthactionnet.org
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About the Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay (KGPP), Inc.
TheKabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay is an association of boys and young men thriving in exploitative working environments in the Philippines founded in 1998 in Iloilo City. Through its social enterprise, the PEERS Network Philippines, it operates in the corridors of exploitation across the vulnerable routes of human trafficking via the nautical highway, the trade centres in urban cities and the tourism hotspots in the country. Since its founding, the organization seeks to respond to needs of young men who are victims of trafficking and exploitative labor that are neglected due to strong cultural double standards and norms that considers their experiences a rite of passage or being blamed of their own victimisation. The organization focuses its efforts to address human rights encompassing health and social issues surrounding exploitation that impact youth lives and well-being. Activities of the organization are linked to its three portfolios on community leadership, stewardship and entrepreneurship with the goal of transforming vulnerable youth groups into behavior change entrepreneurs who are able to co-create and outsource practical solutions to their everyday life concerns, rise above them and set their life stories as example of hope and positive change.
The organization has been recognized as one the most outstanding youth organizations in the Country in 2003 for its Iloilo Chapter and 2008 for its Negros Chapter by the National Youth Commission and a 2008 recipient of the Coca Cola Foundation’s Coke Barkada Award for its work with HIV positive young people.
The River-of-Life tools (ROL) is a learner centered approach for behavior change programming for communities of at-risk young people. It uses appreciative inquiry principles for behavior change facilitation, communication and peer learning. It is composed of four tools, the Tree of Dreams, the Self-Assessment of Risk, the River of Life and the "I" Journal. Enrolled community groups facilitates it quarterly to generate individual and group outputs that used to stimulate behavior change and are showcased every year during an annual knowledge fair in line with the World AIDS Campaign. It was developed by the pioneers of KGPP in Iloilo in 2005 under the name "Self-measurment of ChangeTools with the assitance of the Asian Development Bank through the Constellation for Life Competence (formerly AIDS Competence) based in Thailand during the organization’s implementation of the Skills for Life project funded by UNICEF Country Program for Children 6 (2005-2009). The Philippine NGO Support Program (PHANSuP) selected the initiative as one of the Community Engagement Learning Case and was adopted as a tool for measuring behavior change for the Positive Living program scaledup to 11 CBOs implemented in Manila, Iloilo, Cebu, Zamboanga and Davao.
The toolkit was selected as one of the Official Global Village Activity for the XIX International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) held in Washington DC at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. from July 22 – 27, 2012.
The International Youth Foundation (IYF) invests in the extraordinary potential of young people. Founded in 1990, IYF builds and maintains a worldwide community of businesses, governments, and civil-society organizations committed to empowering youth to be healthy, productive, and engaged citizens. IYF programs are catalysts of change that help young people obtain a quality education, gain employability skills, make healthy choices, and improve their communities. To learn more, visit:www.iyfnet.org.
About the Starbucks Youth Action Grants Program
The Starbucks Youth Action Grants program helps young people realize their natural potential to reinvent their local communities. The program is the primary vehicle through which the Starbucks Foundation invests in communities globally as part of the Starbucks commitment to communities where the company does business. Since launching the Fund in 2007, more than $1.5 million has been invested in programs around the world. The Fund is integral to the company achieving its goal by 2015 of engaging 50,000 young social entrepreneurs to innovate and take action and, in turn, to inspire 100,000 additional individuals to take action in their communities. For more information, please visitwww.starbucksfoundation.com/sef.
John Piermont Montilla
Rhea B. Penaflor
Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay
Venturing boys and men thriving in exploitative environments to address the health and social outcomes exploitation bring about to their well-being
PEERS Network Center for Behavior Change Entrepreneurship
The Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay is set to Particpate in the 19th International AIDS Conference to be held in Washington DC on July 22-27, 2012 and showcase its behaviour change entreprenuership program entitled: My River of Life, My Toolkit for Change at the Global Village Marketplace and Networking area.
The River-of-Life Tool is a behavior change outcomes measurement tool developed during the HEART Emergence Project supported by the Starbucks Youth Action Grant through the International Youth Foundation in year 2008.
The tool is a consolidation of dream-building sessions, self assessment of risk behaviors and river-of-life workshops and peer helping activities that help community groups of vulnerable, at-risk and those already living with HIV and their partners build their dreams, assess their risk-behaviors, benchmark change objectives, measure progress and celebrate change in one learning package that is fun, exciting and income generating.
The River-of-Life Toolkit for Change was collectively developed by emerging leaders from the male sex work community under the UNICEF Country Program for Children 6 HIV Prevention project in the year 2005-2009 and Constellation for Life Competence in 2007.
Currently, the River-of-Life initiative is integrated in the MDG programs of KGPP and being adopted by the Philippine NGO Support Program or PHANSuP for its program for Positive Prevention in the Cities of Manila, Cebu, Iloilo, Bacolod, Davao and Zamboanga supported by the MAC AIDS Fund and the International HIV/AIDS Alliance and the City Government of Iloilo for its Exclusive Breastfeeding program supported by the World Health Organization.
The event is hosted by the Peers Enabling Each other's Recovery social Network (PEERS Network) Philippines, United Western Visayas, The HIV and AIDS Core team of the Western Visayas Medical Center and the Philippine NGO Support Program (PHANSuP), Inc.
The River-of-Life Marketplace Booth at the Global Village will start at July 22 at 8:00am until July 27 at 8:00pm in EDT
The event will be represented by George Bartolome III, President of the United Western Visayas and PHANSuP Development Fellow
In 2008, the international youth foundation through Starbucks Youth Action Grants revived the entrepreneurial efforts of the Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay (KGPP) on its HEART innove project under Yearn, Learn and Earn through Peer Entrepreneurship (YouthLEAP ) a social entrepreneurship program.
In early late 2010, the Fisherman Foundation, the SEVEN Fund, the University of Asia and the Pacific – Center for Social Responsibility, the Rotary Club of Philippines, and the Asian Social Enterprise Incubator launched the Breakthrough Innovation Grant.
The grant will provide seed capital to the most innovative business idea that can create prosperity in Metro Manila, Philippines. We are looking for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as well as social entrepreneurs whose ideas can serve as drivers for poverty alleviation and social improvement.
In order to scale-up the investments made by the International Youth Foundation and Starbucks Youth Action Grants to the YouthLEAP program of KGPP, the organization submitted its PEERS.net entrepreneurial innovation entry designed for young people who rise above prostitution in the Philippines.
In April 15, the PEERS.net; MyPEERS.net venture was selected as one of the 7 Finalist and the organization is preparing for a full business proposal to finalise its entry at the University of Asia and the Pacific.
As previous fellow, we are seeking support from the International Youth Foundation and the YouthActionNet fellows for ideas to improve our model.
Of the 94 entries received by the deadline March 15, 2011 in an open search worldwide, seven (7) entrepreneurs/teams have been selected to proceed to the final stage of the search for the most innovative business idea(s) that would have an impact on poverty alleviation in the Philippines.
The winner(s) will receive a grant of up to USD $20,000.00 to be used exclusively as seed funding for implementing the winning proposal. The winner(s) will also receive the Asian Social Enterprise Incubator prize and can avail 6 months of free management consultancy (1 session per month) in the implementation of the project.
Our screening panel consisted of representatives from the three (3) organizing bodies:
The Fisherman Foundation;
SEVEN (Social Equity Venture) Fund; and
University of Asia and the Pacific – Center for Social Responsibility
This search is focused on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as well as social entrepreneurs whose ideas can serve as drivers for poverty alleviation and social improvement. The initial entries were judged based on the following criteria:
Effect on the quality of life and poverty alleviation in Metro Manila;
Promotional reach and community participation; and
Feasibility of implementation
The seven (7) finalists will submit the following by June 15, 2011:
a full business plan (format provided);
a 60-second video clip (optional);
a 100-word abstract of their business plan;
three (3) references as proof of participant’s capability to implement the proposal (indicate the names and their contact information); and
Other forms of proof of capability for project implementation (e.g. for participants from outside of the Philippines, partnership with a local institution that can closely monitor project implementation; access to networks; technical expertise; access to necessary equipment)
The seven (7) finalists will also be assigned specific business consultants who can help them refine their Grant entries prior to the final selection of the Grant winner(s). The open-source evaluation process (i.e. votes and comments) will again be open to the public on June 15, 2011. The seven (7) finalists can once again invite their networks to provide suggestions on how to improve their business proposal. The submission of revised business plans will be on July 1, 2011. The winner(s) will be announced on July 15, 2011.
The winner(s) will be selected on the basis of outstanding merit founded on the following criteria:
Effect on the quality of life and poverty alleviation in the chosen locality
Sustainability – “COW-F” Framework
Feasibility of implementation
Creativity and innovation
Promotional reach and community participation
Scalability and replicability
The applications of the seven (7) finalists met our criteria of work that is innovative and has direct social and economic benefits for the community. The seven (7) business ideas are listed alphabetically:
Bottle School Project: Grassroots Contractors by Illac Diaz
Coco-fish composite business plan by Taufan Arhammar, Fajri Nugroho, Sabila Haqi, and Fanny Purwati
GKonomics: The Business of Nation Building by GKonomics International, Inc.
Hodapen, an Environmentally friendly Substitute for Wood by Hossein Davani, Anthony Davani, Morgan Munter, and Aryan Davani
Let the Last be First: The Poor as Vanguard of Solar Energy by Crescente de los Reyes
Messy Bessy Cleaners: Helping Ourselves through Sustainable Enterprises by Messy Bessy Cleaners, Inc.
PEERnet Venture, a YouthLEAP Initiative by Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay (Peers for Positive Living)
John Piermont Montilla, Youth Champion for Reproductive Health to REPRESENT THE PHILIPPINES AT THE ASIA SOCIETY'S ASIA 21 YOUNG LEADERS SUMMIT IN INDONESIA
Multi-cultural, multi-sectoral dialogue brings together
over 150 young leaders from the Asia Pacific
(29 November 2010, Jakarta) - John Piermont Montilla, founding President of the Kabataang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay, a National association of young men surviving abuse, exploitation, and violence based in Iloilo City Philippines has been chosen among more than 200 emerging leaders from some 30 countries and economies in the Asia-Pacific region who will participate in the Asia Society's fifth annual Asia 21 Young Leaders Summit, to be held in Jakarta from December 3-5, 2010.
Montilla, a nationally and internationally recognized youth leader in the field of HIV and AIDS joins other young leaders, all under age 40, who will engage in discussions about "Unity in Diversity: Responsible Leadership in the Asia-Pacific." The diversity of representation - from business, government, academia, to media, civil society, and the arts - brings a wide range of perspectives to the discussions which will explore issues such as the recent natural crises in Asia, ways to foster more equitable growth across the region, and lessons in leadership from history's greatest leaders.
The Asia Society's Asia 21 Young Leaders Summit is part of a larger initiative designed to help emerging leaders from across the region to develop common approaches to meet its shared challenges. "The Asia 21 Summit brings together the region's most impressive young leaders to develop relationships, trust, and mutual understanding that can drive collaborative approaches for addressing the region's greatest challenges," says Asia Society Executive Vice President Jamie Metzl. "We are thrilled to be bringing the Asia 21 summit to Indonesia, one of the most important emerging economies in the world and a thriving democracy. Asia 21 leaders from across the region will work with Indonesia's new generation of leaders to help build a better future for all."
The Asia 21 Summit is supported by founding international sponsor Bank of America Merrill Lynch. "As a global organization committed to developing our public and private sector relationships in the region, we are honored to be a part of such a meaningful and educational program," said Brian Brille, Asia Pacific President. "Responsible leadership is a core value at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and as such, we encourage the sharing of best practices and innovative ideas that will enhance the tools and capabilities available to the next generation of Asia's leaders."
Manong Pier as he is called by his peers is a Biological Sciences graduate of the West Visayas State University as a feed the hungry scholar of the Department of Foreign Affairs, an UNLAD Kabataan Program recipient of the Department of Social Welfare and Development and a ford fellow on gender, sexuality and reproductive health at the University of San Carlos.
Known for his sexual and reproductive health and rights advocacy, particularly his HIV prevention work among young people, he is deeply involved in strengthening community engagement for at risk and marginalised youth who because of the their highly stigmatized conditions disabled their bid to engage in decision-making processes afforded to them by law. He facilitates engagement between marginalized communities with government service providers like the social hygiene clinics and the social welfare offices where the youth are recognized as "rights holders" and the government as "duty-bearers" where both are co-performers in the efficient, effective and sustainable delivery and uptake of services for those needing these health resources most.
He advocates comprehensive life skills-based sexuality education for young people which he believes a key in empowering young people to equip themselves with the right and appropriate knowledge and skills against exploitation, abuse and trafficking as well protecting themselves from HIV and risk-factors of infection.
Kabatang Gabay sa Positibong Pamumuhay - a two-time National TAYO award winner with constituency representing people who survived exploitation, violence and trafficking supports the reproductive health bill pending almost ten years in Congress which promotes sex education and family planning services.
According to him, "young people engage in risky behaviors not because of the reproductive health bill or sex education measures but largely because they are robbed of their right to [have access to] accurate and appropriate information about sex, sexuality and reproductive health including services on the prevention of sexually transmitted infection and HIV.
His leadership endeavor champions youth-led development which gained recognition from the TAYO Awards Foundation, the Coke Barkada Award and the Starbucks Youth Action Grants. His prominent regional engagements include serving as YouthActionNet Ambassador of the International Youth Foundation, an e-mentor of the Sprout E-Course of the TakingITGlobal in the field of HIV and one of the Young Leaders in Governance Fellow of the Galing Pook Foundation and the United Nations Democracy Fund. He had served as Asia-pacific national focal point for the global youth network under the UNODC and as current national focal point for the Philippines of the Global Youth Coalition on AIDS based in New York.
Currently he is involved in the Community Engagement Strengthening for the Philippine HIV Response or CES4PHR - a joint project of the Philippine National AIDS Council (PNAC) and the Philippine NGO Support Program (PHANSuP), Inc. as project consultant
The Asia 21 Summit is the pre-eminent gathering of Asia's most dynamic young leaders from the Asia-Pacific region, from every sector including business, government, media, culture and civil society. To date, the network counts more than 600 of the most accomplished young leaders in the Asia-Pacific among its members, including businessmen, documentary filmmakers, environmental activists, human rights advocates, members of parliament, military personnel, performance artists, and social entrepreneurs.
The Asia 21 Summit in Jakarta is also supported by Biznet, Blue Bird, Femina Group, GlobeAsia, HPRP Lawyers, Media Indonesia, PricewaterhouseCoopers, PT Freeport Indonesia, and Saratoga Capital, among others.
The Asia Society is an international organization dedicated to strengthening relationships and deepening understanding among the peoples of Asia and the United States. It seeks to enhance dialogue, encourage creative expression, and generate new ideas across the fields of policy, business, education, arts, and culture. Founded in 1956, the Asia Society is a nonpartisan, nonprofit educational institution with offices in Hong Kong, Houston, Los Angeles, Manila, Melbourne, Mumbai, New York, San Francisco, Seoul, Shanghai, and Washington, DC. For more information, contact the Asia Society, 725 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10021.
For more information about the Asia Society's Asia 21 Young Leaders Initiative, including details about previous conferences and Fellows, please visit www.AsiaSociety.org/Asia21.