Potential volunteers from different sectors within the university lined up for registration right before participants and organizers officially launched the Blue Vote 2016 last November 18 at Arrupe Hall, Martin Building.
High school and college students, university administrators, faculty and non-teaching staff joined the Blue Vote 2016, which aims to empower not just themselves as voters but also the most vulnerable in the society, as what Political Science Chair Ramon Beleno III said.
Blue Vote is an electoral engagement organization of Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) with the coordination of University Community Engagement and Advocacy Council (UCEAC), University Research Council (URC), St. Ignatius Spirituality Center (ISFO), University Academic Council (UAC), and Samahan Central Board (SCB). Dating it way back two years ago, Blue Vote first got involved during the 2013 midterm elections.
Being the university’s agenda for the upcoming election, Blue Vote “educate and lead the AdDU community and vulnerable communities to a discernment on the 2016 elections, and establish a political trait and senatorial quick polls among qualified voters in AdDU.”
Since the university is a member of the Davao Association of Catholic Schools (DACS), Blue Vote also adopted the CHAMP, DACS’ advocacy for electoral processes, which stands for clean, honest, accurate, meaningful and peaceful elections.
During the launching program, Atty. Romeo T. Cabarde Jr., UCEAC chair, revisited Blue Vote 2013 and showed the participants how it went during the national midterm election.
During Cabarde’s talk regarding the nature of Blue Vote, he also introduced the following clusters for volunteers to choose: the facilitator’s circle, resource mob team, online campaigners, creative and arts department, volunteers management group, and election forum managers.
In behalf of DACS, Fr. Archimedes Lachica also presented the “mutual understanding” of Blue Vote 2016 and the latter association through his message during the launching the program.
Aside from its internal partners, Blue Vote has also coordinated with the ABS-CBN’s “Boto Mo I-patrol Mo,” through local TV journalist Francis Magbanua.
“Among notable actions that Blue Vote 2013 was able to report was the discovery of canned goods contribution with money inside,” Magbanua said, pointing out how Blue Vote 2013 managed to watch the previous senatorial elections.
Meanwhile, UCEAC and its partners continue to urge willing and potential volunteers within the university community to be part of the Blue Vote 2016.
“There will be a total of 18,022 positions to be filled in the 2016 election. At tayong lahat, we are all expected as volunteers of Blue Vote na bantayan ang boto para sa pagpili ng 18,022 na posts na ‘yan,” Cabarde noted.
SAMAHAN Pres. Michael Zachary Leyson, together with Cabarde and Magbanua, unveiled the official logo of Blue Vote 2016 and joined the crowd singing the “Blue Vote” jingle.
Setting as the beginning, the launching of Blue Vote 2016 is meant to be the start of tapping sheer volunteerism from the Ateneo community. The UCEAC office, located at Xavier Hall, 8th Floor, Community of the Companions, is open for new registrants.