“While the Middle East and Africa are using technology for protest, even revolution, the Philippines is using technology to bring the country back together”.
In a mass demonstration of how technology can be a force for good, thousands in Mindanao and Manila will unite in a giant videoconference on March 1st to support this month’s resumption of the peace talks.
Organized by Philippine-based “PeaceTech,” the event is one of several programs, which leverages technology to build understanding between young Muslims and non-Muslims throughout the Philippines.
“Until recenty, dialogue has mostly been from the top down.” But as the Middle East is confirming, dialogue and communication can increasingly be from the bottom up,” says PeaceTech’s founder, Robin Pettyfer. “The power of the internet can be abused. But if used responsibly, it can be a significant force for good – in education, democracy and in conflict reduction.”
The upcoming mass videoconference between Manila and General Santos City will complement numerous programs, including a classroom videoconference program that PeaceTech is holding for dozens of public high schools and colleges in Mindanao and Metro Manila. Other programs include teacher trainings; workshops on technology and peace education; and community projects.
“We have the technology to let young people understand that they might have more in common than what they are being told. So the time has arrived to use it!,” says Pettyfer.
PeaceTech will be joined by its partners including hosts Polytechnic University of the Philippines, the Peace Center at Notre Dame University of Dadiangas, AusAID, Germany’s GIZ, the Philippine Department of Education and the Office of the Presidential Advisor on the Peace Process.
Singer Gary Valenciano will be joining the thousands at the event.
What: “Building Understanding through Technology.”
When: Tuesday, March 1: 1 pm to 5 pm
Where: Gymnasium, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Sta. Mesa, Manila and Lagao Gymnasium, Lagao, General Santos City
Special Guest: Gary Valenciano
Hosts: Atom Araullo in Manila and Baicon Macaraya in Mindanao
- In Manila: Robin Pettyfer, PeaceTech: 0917 562 2790; (02) 358 7131;
- In General Santos City: Nerissa Piamonte, PeaceTech: 0917 562 2791; (083) 552 4351 loc. 2225
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