THE Filipino representatives to the 2013 Association of South East Asian Nation (Asean) Youth Camp begin preparation for the week-long event. Themed “In Celebration: Asean Youths Unite,” the youth camp is set to happen in Singapore from August 26 to September 1.
The Asean Youth Camp will be participated by the 10 members of the Asean: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Countries such as South Korea, China and Japan are also invited to join the camp.
Each country shall have a delegate aged 16 to 25 years old for Traditional Music, Traditional Dance, Photography/Photojournalism and Painting. Also, they are required to have an adult leader during the camp.
The country’s delegation is composed of Lester Babiera for Photography/Photojournalism, Joseph Martin Gabriel for Painting, Rolinda Gilbaliga for Traditional Music, Michael Barry Que for Traditional Dance, and Niño Selibio as the Head of Delegation.
As the last in the series of youth camps implemented by the Asean Committee on Culture and Information, the event aims to promote awareness and understanding of each other’s culture through interactive activities, as well as build friendship among the youth delegates.
This year’s Filipino delegates were chosen based on their portfolios, talent presentations and interviews. The selection committee included Director Julius Flores of the Department of Foreign Affairs, Lilian Barco of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, Prof. Brenda Fajardo of the University of the Philippines (UP) and 2003 ASEAN Youth Camp fellow Mr. Jose Claudio Guerrero.
Babiera, the Philippine delegate for Photography/Photojournalism, is an Art Studies graduate student from UP Diliman. He earned his AB Journalism undergraduate degree at the University of Santo Tomas (UST) and was a former editor of The Varsitarian, the official student publication of UST. He is also contributing articles and photographs for newspapers and magazines.
The Philippine delegate for Painting is Gabriel. He took up Bachelor of Fine Arts major in Painting at UP Diliman and he graduated cum laude. Also in the same university, he finished a diploma course in Theater Arts. Gabriel became an exchange student at École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris where he attended courses in Drawing, Ceramics and Stone Carving.
Que, the Philippine delegate for Traditional Dance, is a UP Diliman student taking up Dance. He is currently the president of the UP Dance Company. Que was honed in folk dancing when he was studying in the Philippine High School for the Arts at Mt. Makiling.
The rose among the thorns of this year’s Philippine delegation is Gilbaliga who will represent the country for Traditional Music. The student from UP Diliman Music Education is a chanter from the indigenous community of Panay Bukidnon. Gilbaliga knows how to play various traditional musical instruments such as the Kulintang, Sarunay, bamboo xylophone and bamboo wind instruments, among others.
The adult leader of the Philippine delegates is Selibio, a musician and a cultural officer from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA).
The NCCA, the prime arm of the government for culture and the arts, is the partner of the Asean for the youth camp. During the delegate’s pre-camp activities, Bong Billones from the Philippine Educational Theater Association was tapped by the NCCA to facilitate the delegates’ team building and to help in their cultural presentation which will be presented in Singapore.