PASIG CITY, April 29, 2022 – Highlighting its Makakalikasan core value, the Department of Education (DepEd) showcased the green initiatives of its learners and personnel in celebration of the Earth Day 2022 on April 22.
“We cannot underestimate the efforts of the youth because even in their own ways, they take active steps to protect the environment. For example, Generation Z or better known as Gen Z supports movements like purchasing cruelty-free products, zero-waste management,and the like. If they can do it, so can we with our learners,” Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones said during the event.
Organized by the Office of Assistant Secretary for Youth Affairs and Special Concerns (OAYASC) and the Youth Formation Division (YFD), the Earth Day virtual event highlights the theme “Youth: Invest in our Planet” which tackles the importance of bayanihan to protect and conserve the environment for future generations as the goal moves from restoring the earth to investing in it in sustainable ways in the light of climate change and growing number of environmental issues worldwide.
“I call for the youth and everyone to be good role models, to take care of our Mother Earth, and be the bearers of change for a better world. we cannot tell what the future holds but every day, let us invest in our planet by being actively involved in environmental activities and endeavors,” Sec. Briones added.
During the panel discussion, youth representatives presented their green initiatives such as the establishment of a vegetable garden, following sustainable food consumption practices like backyard gardening, steaming vegetables, Gulayan sa Paaralan Program (GPP), distribution of fruit-bearing tree seedlings, and Environmental-Friendly Purchase.
Davao Del Sur School of Fisheries SSG Vice President Ramzel Ivan Hugh Delloro shared the following tips for eco-friendly purchases: shop at eco-friendly stores, avoid impulse buying, buy local products, buy fruits and vegetables that are in season, reduce online order deliveries, buy recycled items, bring eco-shopping bags, avoid pre-washed groceries, and choose organic and natural products.
“Eco-friendly living can lead to cost savings from energy and water efficiency, less maintenance, enhanced air quality, a healthier lifestyle, increased property value, and positive impact chance in the community to help save the planet,” Delloro said.
Meanwhile, Assistant Secretary for Youth Affairs and Special Concerns Juan Valeriano Respicio IV noted that investing in something entails a certain degree of sacrifice coupled with hope as he urged learners to rise and invest in planet Earth for their future and the future of generations yet to be born.
“Now is the time for us to act. To sacrifice and to invest. To the youth, I encourage you to be more conscious and proactive and to be supportive of our efforts to preserve the environment. Let us focus our attention on matters concerning climate change and be part of the solution to the ever-growing and ever-changing challenges concerning the environment,” Asec. Respicio said.
YFD OIC-Chief Rovin James Canja, Region XI Director Allan Farnazo, School Division Superintendent – SDO Davao del Sur Nelson Lopez, and ASDS Janette Veloso also attended the virtual Earth Day 2022 celebration.