Inspiring Moro youth all over the Philippines, the Ateneo de Davao University through the Salaam Movement convened Moro youth leaders from different tribes through the MSummit: National Moro Youth Conference last Nov. 30-Dec. 1 at the Finster Auditorium.
As an avenue for the delegates to be more motivated in furthering their respective initiatives and causes, the summit provided a platform to recognize the efforts of these Moro youths especially on their grassroots engagements in achieving peace through its first ever MPower Awards.
“We are working to make sure that peace in all forms, peace in all sectors will be achieved. We work for our community. We work for our people,” Al Qalam Institute Exec. Dir. Datu Mussolini Sinsuat Lidasan said during his official message for the event.
After a “rigorous” selection process of initially about 1,500 Moro and Moro-serving youth applicants, the board members of the summit selected the final roster of participants through their written application and “unique M power.”
“MSummit will provide a safe space for productive conversations, intra- and interfaith dialogue and networking for the participants. Whether you are a Moro, Millennial or Mindanaon, to #MPower is to share the same confidence in others and move towards change,” Salaam Movement Project Coordinator Fatima Star Lamalan shared.
Acknowledging their contributions particularly on the peripheries, the exemplary Moro youths out of the chosen participants were awarded for their efforts on influencing others, and actualizing their part of the ‘responsibility on rebranding a new breed of Moro youth for the next generation.
The two-day event kicked off with a Cultural Night that showcased the traditional dress of each represented tribe while the second day of the summit was the MSummit proper wherein social media campaigns, SCRAM: Stop Casual Racism Against Muslims by Salam: The Ateneo Muslim Society, Siraj – Xavier University’s Reducing Religion Gaps (ReGAP) and To Reduce Extremism and Achieve Lasting Peace (#ToReal) of I Am Mindanao, through Generation MPower: Social Media Campaign Series were highlighted. Breakout sessions also tackled social media management, events planning and organization, and journalism.
First year political science student Earl Mae Yusoph expressed her gratitude to be a participant of the MSummit.
“To be one of the chosen participants to join the #MSummit is an amazing opportunity and experience as a Moro student. The feeling was surreal – to be able to meet the hope of Bangsamoro youth in the event. I believe that the #MSummit is significant in empowering the Bangsamoro youth and for us to know the struggles that they’re facing and the efforts that each individual made to be able to make a change in their community and to make a difference,” she said.
In partnership with the Al Qalam Institute for Islamic Identities and Dialogue in Southeast Asia, Salaam Movement, under the Office of the University President, aims to promote Moro and non-Moro youths’ efforts in ‘proving safe space for the youth to promote inter and intra-faith understanding.
“It is high time we highlight the triumphs of the Moro youth and use the conference as an opportunity to influence others to do more and be more for our communities especially in the Bangsamoro,” Lidasan said.