Almost every week, I read about a new advocacy being formed. The following are three advocacies that I have recently encountered in the www.
Citizenship by Good Example (CGE)
This is a Simbahan Lingkod Bayan (SLB) initiative. SLB is an Ateneo based socio political ministry of Society of Jesus. It is interesting to note that SLB recently came out with Iniibig ko ang Pilipinas statment at the height of the NBN ZTE scandal. Anyway, going back to CGE. I am with them since part of my advocacy is good citizenship. The initiative has two basic activities, distribution of a double CD celebrating love for the Philippines and are regular radio program on the AM band. The initiative is allied with various organizations like Center of Positive Futures, Gawad Kalinga, Inigo Corporate Formation Group, Pathways to Higher Education, Rags2Riches and other groups.
Another initiative is TEAM RP a youth led organization. This group, I think, was formed at the height of the Jun Lozada expose. The another Ateneo led group made news when they came out with a statement On The Makati Rally expressing their disappointment over the presence of former presidents Cory Aquino and Erap Estrada on stage during a rally at Ayala Ave. More on TEAM RP can be read on this blog.
Another initiative, Center for Responsible Governance Philippines, Inc. seeks to fight the culture of corruption by giving awards to uncorrupt and incorruptible people in government. They believe that a counterculture exists and that they want to turn the spotlight on good individuals, nurture them and hopefully grow them. This is a La Salle alumni led initiative.
These three initiatives are truly admirable. They do what they do for love of country. I believe there is no hidden or personal agenda. These initiatives were formed out of frustration, maybe, from all the scandal and crisis in our country. Through these initiatives, the participants won't feel helpless. They do their share in helping our country get on its feet.
Having said that, my problem with these initiatives are the following.
1) There is no direct participation from ordinary Filipinos. Very typical middle class initiatives. A magtataho may never be able to relate with these initiatives if ever he hears or sees them on the news. These kind of initiatives is good only for those who are part of it. I don't think poor Filipinos can empathize with these initiatives. There is no mass appeal in any of the initiatives.
2) There is nothing new being offered. Many initiatives have come and gone. A few have endured but not one truly made a dent, not even Gawad Kalinga, into our collective consciousness. Forgive me but I view on these initiatives is doing something for the sake of doing something.
3) There is no attempt to capture the imagination of our people. An advocacy can truly make a difference if it captures the hearts and minds of our people.
4) From the start, the initiatives are already labeled. CGE and TEAM RP being an Ateneo led initiatives while the other is La Salle led.
5) The initiatives have faces. Only a FACELESS campaign will get the attention and capture the imagination of our people.
Having said the above, I wish all three initiatives success in their endeavor for they do what they do for love of country.