August 28, 2014
Essay contest top honorees. On the far right is first-place winner Angel Joy Orpilla, 15, and second from the right is second-place winner Luis Antonio Valdez, 14.
Filipino youths were awarded prizes Aug. 7 in an essay contest put on by JICA Philippines Office with the theme “the lives of people in the Philippines and Japanese ODA." More than 170 entries had been received.
The contest for Filipinos ages 11 to 16 was held in commemoration of the 60th anniversary of economic cooperation between Japan and the Philippines and to encourage young people to think about the relationship between the countries and what they can do to maintain and strengthen friendly relations and cooperation.
Angel Joy Orpilla, 15, of Tabuk City National High School in Kalinga Province, won first prize. Her essay "Dumanay Meets JICA" illustrates, from the point of view of an elementary school girl, how life in her mountain village was changed by roads and a power plant built with Japanese assistance.
The second-place winner was Luis Antonio Valdez, age 14, of South Hill School Inc. in Laguna province. He wrote about the project Enhancing Resiliency through Community Participatory Flood Observation for Laguna Lake Basin.
In 1954, the year official development assistance from Japan to the Philippines began, administrative officials of the Philippines went to Japan for training. That was the beginning of economic cooperation between the countries. Since then, Japan has carried out cooperation in various fields based on the pillars of continuous economic growth, stable local infrastructure, a stable production base, and peace and development in Mindanao.
To read the winners’ essays, see below.