United States Embassy in Manila, in partnership with the Alcantara Foundation, sponsored a series of camps in General Santos City on September 5 to 7, to provide young leaders with entrepreneurship skills to start small businesses and improve their communities.
Over 60 youth leaders from the provinces of Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, North Cotabato, and Cotabato participated.
The young leaders presented community projects, stemming from a July 2014 Entrepreneur Bootcamp and joined sessions to strengthen their skills in leadership, networking, collaboration and community service.
On September 6, the participants, along with alumni of US government programs, planted mangrove trees as a community outreach activity and released 500,000 bangus fishes to promote environmental conservation and protection.
During the July camp in Cotabato, the youth participated in a series of workshops that encouraged innovation and creativity through business planning. At the conclusion of the bootcamp, participants designed community outreach projects, which ranged from educating indigent children in North Cotabato on proper hygiene, to promoting environmental awareness to Alternative Learning System (ALS) students through a tree planting in Tacurong City, to teaching women and youth how to grow vegetable gardens in Maguindanao as a source of income.