On February 19, 2016, a total of 1,500 Grade 9 and 10 students gathered at the Provincial Capitol Ground in Mambajao, Camiguin and joined the 1st Youth Summit on Adolescent Sexuality and Reproductive Health (ASRH).

This 1st youth summit with the theme: ‘Moving Towards Youth Development “is a project of the three dedicated leaders of Camiguin, namely: Governor Jurdin Jesus Romualdo, Mambajao, Mayor Maria Louisa Romualdo, and Congressman Xavier Jesus Romualdo.

According to Nikolsha May Closas, Provincial Public Information Officer (and Population Officer Designate), the purpose of the youth summit is to convene a large number of youth and educate them on healthy lifestyles and responsible sexual behavior. She said that intensive information dissemination is needed to address currently emerging issues like the rising teenage fertility and the proliferation of STI, HIV, and AIDS.

The 2013 Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality Survey (YAFSS4) indicated that 51.4% of Region 10’s teenage females have begun childbearing at age 19. The survey also showed that level of AIDS awareness among Region 10’s youth has decreased from 96.7% in 2002 to 79.1% in 2013. The youth largely misunderstand HIV and AIDS, 36 in 100 believe that AIDS is curable (YAFSS4).

Prior to the youth summit, the Commission on Population Region 10 and the Department of Health Region 10 conducted three (3) batches of U4U facilitators’ training on February 16 – 18, 2016 at Villa Paraiso, Mambajao, Camiguin. The participants of the training were selected Grade 9 & 10 students of Guinsiliban National High School, Eulalio Pabillore National High School, and Camiguin National High School. Each school sent twenty-five (25) participants and one (1) teacher. A total of seventy-eight (78) students and teachers attended the training. The participants were additional U4U facilitators in the youth summit apart from the existing fifty (50) U4U trained facilitators in Mambajao and Mahinog National High Schools. POPCOM Executive Director Dr. Juan Antonio M. Perez III, OIC/Regional Director Neil Aldrin G. Omega and some staff of POPCOM-10 were present in the summit. Executive Director Perez and OIC, Regional Director Omega gave an inspiring message to the participants.

The U4U teen trail was one of the activities of the 1st Youth Summit on Adolescent Sexuality and Reproductive Health (ASRH) in the province. Other activities conducted were symposium on STIs, HIV, and AIDS, showing of ASRH-themed films, barbeque party, and live band performance. The short films shown were entries of POPCOM-10s 2015 Inter-School Regional Short Film Making Contest and Festival on ASRH.

Governor Jesus Jurdin Romulado, Mayor Maria Louisa Romualdo, and Congressman Xavier Jesus Romualdo were very thankful to DOH and POPCOM for helping them in conducting the summit.