This Youth Organization Is Leading The Fight Against COVID-19 In Cagayan Valley

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Masakbayan Youth Initiative - Metroscene Mag

During a global health crisis when resources are on an all-time low, what would a certain individual buy; sanitary pads or food? Both kinds of commodity are necessary, but in the conditions of people living in a fourth-class town within a third world country, they would rather buy something that is certainly a priority, something that sustains them, and that is food. 

 As one group of youth of the collective demographic among millions of Filipinos in the country, residing in a fourth-class municipality located at the Northeastern region of the island of Luzon, it was trying times for us, especially the youth to experience a problem such as a global health crisis which goes by the name of the COVID-19 Pandemic. So, we asked ourselves, “What can we do?” and in terms of doing something for the community, we gathered as one and made the decision of delivering our efforts to provide a helping hand to the people in whatever way we can. 

Masakbayan Youth Initiative

Pushing onwards, we then started an initiative of creating a youth volunteers’ hub, the MASAKBAYAN YOUTH INITIATIVE  (MYI ) first launched within the social media setting or on the online platform. The MYI being a non-partisan non-government organization is a young and newly standing association of the youth inclusive to all backgrounds as such gender, life status, religion and the overall persona. The town of Camalaniugan and the province of Cagayan needed and placed a high demand of youth leaders, volunteers and advocates to join in the workforce of generating support by any means to the people. Although only a few members of the youth are active in participating in initiatives, our association of volunteers and advocates are dedicated in bringing about the conduct of advocacy programs, campaigns and drives for the people especially during a state of emergency brought by COVID-19.

 As we shed light in performing our way of helping-hand, the MYI launched a campaign with the hashtag #ProtectWomenBeatCovid19. Upon launching our campaign, we saw gender gaps — we established the insight of calling out both the national and local governments to also prioritize women amidst this enhanced community quarantine. We have known that our girls and women are left behind, and so, they are compromised. 

Youth Action 

We received a call that there are stranded students from a State University in our location and nearby areas, and these students are from the far islands of Calayan and Batanes. That's where it all began. The MYI along with its member-advocates, pushed on with the goal of aiding the fellow girls and women thru starting an online movement which instigated the gathering of the youth; contacting local pharmacies and groceries, as we sought to seek for Sanitary Pads as donations. 

 For about three weeks of conducting the project, our initiative has provided sanitary pads for the stranded college girls. And in hopes of reaching more girls, we started to expand our efforts by reaching more communities, like the Indigenous peoples’ community in our place. And so, it continues even now in hospitals to provide sanitary pads for the patients and the frontline workers. Up until this day, we have partnered with two working organizations in this initiative. As firm as our belief and our will of helping p we won't stop in making this initiative and we plan to carry this as a major initiative or project for our growing three weeks organization. 


We are proud to say that even boys and men, are happy to help us make this initiative possible by delivering and donating. One by one, town by town we are making our brothers too as feminists. As a core team of nine young people, we are in high hopes of making our place advocacy center of Cagayan Province.

Text By: Isiah Mikael Gasmen

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