Iloilo 3rd District Board Member Lorenz Defensor (4th from left) led the inauguration of Sibarew Teen Center of Santiago National High School in Barotac Viejo on November 28, 2018. With him were former First Lady Myrna Tupas (3rd from left), the mother of Barotac Viejo town Mayor Niel Tupas III, and Provincial Population Officer Ramon Yee (6th from left).
The Iloilo provincial government, through its Provincial Population Office, opened its 49th school-based multipurpose teen center in Santiago National High School in Barotac Viejo on November 28, 2018.
Dubbed as Sibarew Teen Center, the project is under the Adolescent Health and Youth Development Program of Governor Arthur Defensor Sr.
The center aims to provide youth-friendly services in guidance counseling, spearheads peer-led activities for skills advancement and personality development, and promotes friendship and understanding among peers and adults.
It also offers educational or recreational programs and it has become a venue where students, including out-of-school youth, can freely share their aspirations and problems in growing up.
It started in five public high schools, one in each district in 2011. It then expanded to 49 public high schools, including two island barangay high schools in Concepcion and Carles.
The center has the support of Barotac Viejo Mayor Niel C. Tupas III, Liga ng mga Barangay, Sangguniang Kabataan and Parents and Teachers Association.
Third District Board Member Lorenz Defensor, who represented the governor during the inauguration and turnover ceremony, told the teachers to never give up on their students and always treat them fair and square.
Sharing his personal experiences, Defensor also emphasized the importance of the project in developing the youth since not all can be taught in the four corners of the classroom and only the teen center can provide.