NCCA calls for active involvement from youth

THE National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) called for a more active involvement from public in the promotion of arts and culture in the country.

The NCCA continues to push its effort in calling the youth and struggling artists to be involved in cultural heritage preservation and protection through its different programs.

Fr. Harold Rentoria, OSA, head of the Committee on Cultural Heritage of NCCA said they are conducting a youth heritage camp called “Angat Kabataan” in Sorsogon, May 30-June 24, with 600 participants.

Angat Kabataan aims to make youth the arm of the agency to protect our cultural heritage; to create awareness on the importance of the culture; and to empower the youth.

Rentoria said they are hoping for a multiplier effect in the youth to engage them to join the cultural heritage force.

Meanwhile, the NCCA is also calling the attention of struggling artists who find it hard to enter the mainstream.

To help them, the agency is featuring variety of artworks from mainstream and commercial to regional and indigenous art in Manila Art, Art Fare Philippines and Tam-Awan International Arts Festival to call attention to local artists from the different parts of the country.

Tony Perez, Cultural Affairs Specialist of the United States Embassy in Manila, also believes in every individual’s art capability.

This as he leads the program “Writing from the Heart”. The project is a monthly creativity program that targets “undeserved audiences” like prisoners, gang leaders, drug users in rehabilitation centers, children in conflict with the law, out of school youth and abused women and children.

“Basically participants of Writing from the Heart is made to discover or become aware that there is an infinite well within each person, and that they can draw anything from this well. Unfortunately, society has trained everybody to specialize,” Perez said.

He continued that by opening the infinite well, “they are able to see the possible persons that they can still become.”

Perez stressed the project does not deal with output but insight and reflection. Specifically it wishes to make its target audience realize they are lesser people.

“Every criminal in every prison is really an artist who is not given the right teacher at the right time. And every lunatic in every asylum is the same,” he said.

The project has been to Bilibid Prison, Payatas, Quezon, Dumaguete, Quezon City and Smokey Mountain. It is also set to visit Lingayen, Pangasinan next month.

NCCA claimed all these efforts show they are going beyond being gallery owners and stressed promotion of involvement in cultural heritage is their main objective and not business from arts.
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