Davao City –
NEDA Region XI Director Maria Lourdes Lim served as member of the Panel of Judges in the recently conducted UNILAB Foundation Ideas Positive Run 9 Grand Finals in Davao City. 

As the country’s premier youth engagement program, Ideas Positive gives the youth a platform to create and implement innovative solutions that address pressing health issues in their communities through a competition.

The Ideas Positive Grand Finals Run 9 was part of the back-to-back events in Davao City, dubbed as “#YOUthCan: Unleashing the Power of the Youth” namely: Ideas Positive Youth Forum on Public Health on August 10-11 and the International Youth Day 2019 on August 12. The grand finalist teams hailed from Tuguegarao to Tawi-tawi, which currently implement health projects in their chosen communities. After six months of implementation and through rigorous assessment, validation and deliberation process, top six teams were chosen to advance to the Grand Finals to present the outcomes of their projects. The Panel of Judges, composed of top executives of corporate foundations, heads of universities and government institutions and the UNICEF deliberated on which among the teams and projects had produced the most significant changes in their community.

Adjudged as Grand Champion was Team Kabanatan, whose project addressed the mental health needs of children in distress in three public schools in Datu Odin, Maguindanao due to armed conflict, family problems, abuse and low self-esteem by equipping their teachers with basic skills on mental health and psychosocial services. 

The Ideas Positive event gathered more than 1,500 youth from various provinces in the country. It also brought together various partners from non-government organizations, government, and the private sector to support the youth in unleashing their potentials and showcasing their achievements.

Spearheaded by the UNILAB Foundation, in cooperation with UNICEF, ING Group and the SK Federation, the Ideas Positive Program was established in 2010.  Now on its ninth run, the Program has by far empowered 398 young leaders, engaged 50,000 youth, helping them transform 208 communities, and touch 2.2 million lives nationwide.

– Felicidad M. Rabe