‘Voters Project’ spearheads youth registration drive

15 10 2006

(this news article was published in the Community Billboard of the Bohol Chronicle last October 15, 2006)


With the advocacy slogan “I am the future. I register. I vote. I transform.”, the First Time Voters Project (FTVP) leads the youth in a voters’ registration drive aimed specifically to the youth now qualified to vote in next year’s local elections.


Notwithstanding rumors of a no-election scenario come May 2007, qualified youth, aged eighteen and above (or at least aged eighteen at the day of elections next year) are strongly urged to visit their local Comelec offices, with their valid IDs and have themselves officially registered to vote, as early as now to avoid the deadline rush sure to be experience on December 30, 2006, the last day of registration.

First Time Voters Project is a national network of youth organizations aimed at developing a new generation of electorate who exercise their right to suffrage and maximize such potent tools in determining the fate of the country and their future vis-à-vis maintaining an atmosphere of active involvement. The FTV project believes that this generation has such diverse and powerful opinions and the most prevalent way to get their voice heard is by exercising their right to vote.

In the concept of youth helping the youth, the FTV Project gathers youth advocates from different schools, universities and communities nationwide to forward the FTV objectives.

In Bohol, the First Time Voters Project was launched last Saturday, October 7. The Sanguniang Kabataan Provincial Federation through its President, Hon. Bobbith Cajes-Auza, was among the first to support the project. Other member organizations in the provincial FTV Project network are: the Leaders Incorporated and The Varsitarian of the University of Bohol; the CM-Student Catholic Action, Political Science Society, the student officials of the HNU Criminology Department from the Holy Name University; the Sangguniang Kabataan of Tabalong, Dauis and the Aktibong Tingog sa Kabatan-onang Bol-anon (ATIKABO!), Pandayan Youth and Akbayan! Youth from the community youth organizations.

The FTVP has been discussing with the youth organizations on creative means in conducting the registration drives for the respective organizations. Posters and leaflets have been distributed to university students and the community youth, providing for instructions for the voters’ registration process.

Future programs will include organizing of alternative and creative youth events – parties, concerts, film showings, help-drives, and more parties – that all aim to educate the young generation while motivating their involvement and addressing the decline in their political and electoral participation through practical, youthful and action-oriented means of intervention and cooperation.

The FTVP hopes that through the project, massive and unified youth participation in the election processes will be felt, and the youth voice and the youth vote, which comprises a majority in the country’s voting population, will be proven as a major voting bloc.

“If young people register to vote, and go to the polls, we can have an impact on our democracy and get our voices heard.”

Those who wish to join the project are enjoined to visit http://firsttimevoters.blogspot.com for further information. (edeliza v. macalandag)

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9 10 2006