Dr. Jose Rizal has said, “The youth is the hope of our nation.” Fast forward 150 years later – in the midst of different times, different conditions and different technologies – the youth is bombarded with issues of juvenile crimes, cyberbullying, substance abuse, just to name a few. The society is seeing an increase in young people who believe that their voices have not been heard, or that their efforts have been impacting their community. Is there still hope for the hope of the nation?
It’s not that the youth doesn’t care. It’s not that they have no desire to become part of something bigger than themselves. It’s not that they have no dreams and hopes as individuals or as a sector. The youth was, is and will always be the hope of the nation… but it is time they are given the opportunities and the venue to do what we “hoped” they would do.
Having started his career at a very young age, while he was a student, Pocholo has realized long ago that when you want something and your desire is strong enough, there’s no better time to do it than NOW, and no better place to do it than HERE. Since then, it has become his advocacy to encourage every Filipino youth to believe in themselves in creating positive social change. This led him to establish Voice of the Youth Network (VOTY), a volunteer youth organization that aims to inform, inspire, involve and empower the Filipino youth through media and ICT.
Today, VOTY has over 100,000 members and 20 radio programs across the country, which has given many young people – especially Communication students – to experience broadcasting even while they are still studying. VOTY’s radio programs have also become a venue for like-minded individuals and organizations to meet and share inspiring and empowering stories to the youth.
Furthermore, VOTY has also become an avenue for the youth to become involved in various youth programs, initiatives and advocacies here and abroad. VOTY’s accomplishments and contributions to the youth sector earned them the badge of becoming the official youth media partner of the National Youth Commission.