IN A bid to intensify the campaign against illegal drugs in Northern Mindanao, the region's Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Xavier University (XU)-Ateneo de Cagayan, through its College of Agriculture's Development Communication Department, for the Buhay Ingatan, Droga’y Ayawan (Bida) Program.

The MOA was signed by DILG Regional Director Wilhelm Suyko and XU University President Fr. Mars Tan.

"The good thing about this partnership is that this will also be an opportunity to involve the youth in this campaign. We believe that our students could make a change and that they are our instruments in communicating effectively with the youth as well," Suyko said.

Tan, for his part, said the Bida program is aligned with the university's vision and mission to produce committed, conscientious, and passionate students who are in its pursuit to safeguard the people from harmful things like drugs.

"The program is very important advocacy for the whole country, and we are honored that we can contribute to this very big fight because this problem is also our problem," Tan said.

Under the MOA, the students of XU DevCom will be involved in the promotion of the program through the production of various Bida-related information, education and communication (IEC) materials. These include public service announcements, communication plans, infographics and poster materials.

"The program is really pro-life, pro-poor, and proactive […] XU is an institution that is committed to the mission not just to the church but also the whole society. We form our students to become good citizens," Tan said.

The university president also assured that the "contract will be realized until its completion for the benefit and interest of everyone."