Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace

by Kapamagogopa Incorporated
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Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Invest in Muslim youth volunteering for peace
Women fetching water at Boganga Transitory Site
Women fetching water at Boganga Transitory Site

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your support in these difficult times.

The continuing Covid restrictions in the Philippines, which were again increased in our area by the Government on April 12th, means that at present we are unable to begin the process for the volunteering program. Rest assured that all donations are waiting to be utilized as soon as we can start our recruitment process for a new batch of volunteers.

However in the meantime, we are implementing a small project beginning later in April utilizing some of our experienced volunteers that completed their year of service last July.  The volunteers will be working at two transitory sites in Boganga, Marawi City, where there are still hundreds of displaced families, and there is such a great need for protection and socio-economic integration. These volunteers will go about protection work giving training and support towards women considered vulnerable. We will give updates on their work in the next report.

Wherever you are in the world, I hope you stay safe.

Mariam

 



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Hamza facilitating a youth listening session
Hamza facilitating a youth listening session

Dear Friends,
I am writing this as the end of 2020 approaches. It has been an extremely challenging year for KI as it has for many around the world., I would like to give my warm wishes and a big thank you to all of you who helped our program. The 13th batch of KI volunteers helped to improve the lives of 13,406 people and they contributed more than 20,000 hours of work on Peace and Development issues. Through your donations, you are helping to improve the lives of young people from Mindanao and to reduce some of the factors that are drivers for conflict here in the Southern Philippines.Currently our volunteering program is in furlough but we intend to start recruitment and training of new volunteers as soon as possible.

This is the experience of Hamza who completed his placement last August but continues to work for his partner organization,

HAMZA: STORY OF A DREAMER

Being a Volunteer is not easy as what others think. Being a volunteer in an organization is not a profession, it is a passion to serve the community that you engage all the time. That is the reason why I applied in Kapamagogopa Inc. (KI). Often the volunteers are the only Muslims working for these organisations. Their placement not only helps overcome stereotypes of Muslims in communities that the host organisation serves, but also allows the host organization to help communities which non-Muslims have trouble reaching.This NGO taught me a lot of things like: Values Formation for Peace and Development, Community Organizing and Community Development, Communication Enhancement and Public Speaking Skills, Project Development Monitoring and Evaluation, Networking and Peace Advocacy, and Community Immersion. It is a great avenue for us as Young Professionals to develop our skills doing the volunteering works. After our 1 month training, I was placed in Pakigdait Inc., an interfaith grassroots peacebuilding organization that engages in conflict transformation, peace advocacy, interfaith dialogue and peace-anchored community development in Northern Mindanao.

After a month, I was assigned as Project Coordinator. I don’t expect this kind of task as a volunteer. But with the help of our training in Kapamagogopa Inc. we are flexible enough to accept the challenge to do the duties and responsibilities of being a project coordinator.This project aspires to sustain peaceful communities and prevent violent extremism by creating space and dialogues through a series of listening sessions for 300 Bangsamoro women (wives and mothers of combatants) and 300 Bangsamoro youth in 6 vulnerable towns of Lanao del Norte, Philippines that have been excluded from the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) This project intends to manage expectations, dissipate fears of being excluded from progress, mitigate any radicalization and/or violent reactions particularly from youth, articulate their expectations and agenda, and uplift hope in their communities.We listened to the sentiments for a total of 747 Bangsamoro people (Youth and Women) within the 6 municipalities of Lanao del norte and documented their sentiments.

During the conduction of this project, I witness how the participants convey their sentiments with different emotions. The participants were able to share their thoughts about the result of the plebiscite and what they think about the BARMM government. Some of the youth participants extend their gratitude even though their municipalities were not included to the BARMM government yet they are included to the development plan of the BARMM.Apart from that, I am thankful that I personally met the mayors of the 6 municipalities which I never expected and the Political Officer of Canada Embassy. Moreover, in this project I also met the different Peacebuilders of Lanao del Norte who are committed to participate in our project.

Despite of the goodness of this experience, I still faced a lot of challenges, however those challenges never stop me to extend my efforts and service as a volunteer. Instead it becomes my motivation to continue my passion and inspire my fellow youth to engage their selves to this kind of Job and to be advocate of change. I also consider myself as instrument to promote Peace and share the knowledge and skills to them. I believe that doing this job is a big contribution in my fellow Bangsamoro and non-Bangsamoro people.Thank you for nurturing me Kapamagogopa Inc. and Pakigdait Inc.

 Once again thank you for supporting KI

Stay Safe

Mariam

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Volunteers at Year End Evaluation
Volunteers at Year End Evaluation

Dear Friends,

At the end of this July our 13th Batch of 10 young Peace Builders completed their year of volunteering. Congratulations go to the 7 Women and 3 Men who managed to achieve so much even though their lives were disrupted just like the rest of us.

Despite the severe curtailment of programs and activities in the development sector since March, our young Peace Builders still managed to help a total of 13,406 (7665F: 5741M) people in need during their placements. Due to severe lockdown conditions imposed by the Philippine Government most work recently has been conducted remotely. However some recent example of the work conducted by them include;

  • Facilitated Youth and Women Listening Sessions with marginalized communities
  • Distributed Relief Goods to those affected by Covid
  • Psychosocial support to displaced children
  • Facilitated at empowerment summit 100 young women
  • Assisted in providing Humanitarian assistance to Earthquake survivors

These young people are now equipped and empowered to continue to uplift their local communities and will continue to do so for many years to come.

If you would like to empower to more young people to make a better world around them then please consider supporting our program

Thank you to everyone who continues to support us at this most challenging time.

Mariam

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Sahira in the field
Sahira in the field

Dear Friends and Supporters,

I hope that you are all able to keep safe wherever you are in the World.

Covid 19: Due to the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) currently implemented by the Government, we have had to suspend all of our operations. I am not permitted to leave my home and no staff are able to go to the office due to the restrictions. Three volunteers have elected to stay in the office but are only permitted outside for essential items.

For this report, we will give you the story of Sahirah, who after four months in her placement, wrote about her experience of becoming a KI Volunteer.

VOLUNTEERISM: SELF-NOURISHMENT

Young. Fierce. Brave. I am Sahirah  from  Marawi City. 23 years old and finished my studies with a course of Bachelor of Science in Community Development Without my friends’ knowledge, I was suffering from severe depression in my last three years in College. The reason was my family’s expectation which caused me so much pressure. I was forced to love doing field work though it contradicted my dreams. “Field work was never my strength” I told to myself.

After my graduation day, the depression I felt increased. My family was expecting me to gain better work which caused me for not having good nights. Wet pillows weren’t unusual. I was at the point of going outside my room for ablution purposes only. I even forgot what sour, bitter and sweet taste like. I lose about 3 kilo for a month only. With the reason of showing them my worth and for me to get from my room out, my sister encouraged me to do volunteerism. Coincidentally, Kapamagogopa Incorporated was open for volunteers. There was a lot of questions bothering me those times. “Like seriously? Me? Volunteer? I’m sick of doing field work”. I passed my papers at KI office personally in the month of February and received text message from the project office saying I was qualified to be interviewed and attend written exam in the month of May. In all fairness, I passed the interview. On the following month, I received message from the project officer again for being qualified for the next step of KI hiring process.  I qualified to be part of KI 1-year Volunteering Program. After a month of training, I and one of my co-volunteers were assigned in EcoWEB, Inc. It is a National NGO which is also engaged in Peacebuilding and Humanitarian work same as KI does. There was huge adjustment done by me for being assigned in a new organization. I was assigned in Cotabato during the disaster happened. Earthquake almost destroyed the province of Cotabato. As I stepped out from the car, my tears fell down. I just didn’t know what come to my mind why I unconsciously cried after seeing community people living in tents made of tarpaulins and sticks. No foods and water. No shelter. No rug. The only thing they had is their selves.

Houses were devastated. Three-storey houses became ash. Luckily, there was response done by my host organization and I was part of the team. My contribution was not that much huge however I could feel that what I was doing was a big help for them. Their smile is what pushes me extend more help and do field work with heart as it was taught to me by Kapamagogopa Incorporated. Their thank yous rubbed out my negative stress. I am now falling in love with doing field work. I am now voluntarily engaging myself in responding at any disaster. as a volunteer humanitarian worker under KI, one of my objects now is to see smiles in people’s faces. I am not hoping and dreaming for appreciation and honour for I believe god loves those who do good. What I want now is to spread happiness. I may not be able to make everyone happy but at least, I can make anyone happy.

There are few friends asking me the reason why I am just a volunteer when in fact according to them, there are a lot of opportunities out there where I can apply and possibly receive more money. Well, the only response I tell them is “I don’t need money. I don’t help because of money. I help because apart from it’s our obligation as a human, I just love doing things without expecting any in returns and I love seeing people happy”. We have to remember the idea that when somebody has something negative to say about us, it’s often they have nothing positive to say about their selves.

With these things, I don’t regret that I chose to enrol BS-Community Development and I am so thankful of not backing out from KI’s offer as it opened more opportunities more than I expect. With it, I meet new friends; gain knowledge and skills; I am able to sightsee my veiled flairs and I was assigned in Ecoweb which really taught me philosophies. I just volunteered for four months as of this month of December however I feel like I have done many things. In addition to that, because of volunteering, my emotion was diverted. The depression I felt was lessen. As to my family’s expectation from me, they enlightened me that they are not pressuring me. They just wanted goodthings for me. Moreover, what really makes me happy now is the idea that my family now is the one encouraging meto promote volunteerism through telling me “You can earned blessing by doing good deeds and helping the people”.

Fieldwork wasn’t my strength, but that was just my thought. I did it; and I will do it for god’s sake.

Thank you!!!

 Once again thank you for supporting KI

Stay Safe

Mariam

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Bidaya (left) working on Social Enterprise Project
Bidaya (left) working on Social Enterprise Project

Dear Friends and Supporters,

Project Update:

As we enter a new calendar year, I would like to give my warm wishes and a big thank you to all of you who helped our program. In 2019, KI volunteers helped to improve the lives of 14,978 people and they contributed more than 20,000 hours of work on Peace and Development issues. Through your donations, you are helping to improve the lives of young people from Mindanao and to reduce some of the factors that are drivers for conflict here in the Southern Philippines.

Our current batch of 10 young women and men will soon be halfway through their placement year. Here is the story of one of them.

Bidaya's Story

Bidaya is 23 years old from Lanao del Norte. She graduated with a BS in Education and is a licenced teacher. She planned to work in the Department of Education. “Although I am a licensed teacher, it is hard for me to be employed in a government agency. (due to corrupt practices ed) I waited more than a year to for the result of my application but unfortunately, I never received any response. My friends invited me to apply to Kapamagogopa Inc. At first, I was not interested because it might not work for me however, I still submitted my application. When I was in KI Office, one of the staff explained what is KI, the works of KI, and the processes in the screening of the aspirant volunteers. It made me think that this is not an ordinary volunteering work and that made me interested.

Those explanations enlightened me to pursue my application in KI. I was able to pass the written and interview process, the one day assessment with mixed emotions and of course the one month capacity development training. I feel so blessed and proud when we were introduced as 13th batch volunteer of KI (MASAKAW BATCH). I was deployed in KI and became a project support staff in one of their projects. I assist on the Social Enterprise Project to Internally Displaced Persons. I was able to learn how to interact with high personality people and meet different NGO workers.

 I am very thankful because of the learnings, knowledge and skilled given by this organization. It is not about the allowance/salaries received but because of the contributions and dimensions that they have had shared to us.”

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Organization Information

Kapamagogopa Incorporated

Location: Iligan City, Mindanao - Philippines
Website:
Project Leader:
Mariam Barandia
Iligan City, Lanao del Norte Philippines
$12,850 raised of $30,000 goal
 
238 donations
$17,150 to go
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