Expanding Horizons: Through JENESYS 2.0 and Beyond (Day 36)by Rey Laguda
(This is the 36th day of 50-day journey of DepEd Undersecretary Rey Laguda as being serialized here with his permission, culled from his Facebook account - Blogger/owner
The Department of Education has numerous long-standing partnerships with institutions from across the globe to help us realize our education outcomes and in particular, to provide more opportunities for our learners. One of these partnerships has resulted in the program called JENESYS 2.0 Program, or the “Japan-East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths.” It is a revitalized youth exchange program that aims not only to spread understanding of Japanese culture and values but also to strengthen the basis of diplomatic relations between Japan and respective Asian and Oceanian countries and lay foundations for the future bond among the youth of said countries through mutual understanding and friendship. JENESYS is an initiative of the Japanese government, under the wing of the Japanese International Cooperation Center (JICE) which has been involved in various international cooperation activities mainly for developing countries since its establishment in 1977, and provides the funds necessary for implementation of the project.
JENESYS provides opportunities for our learners not just to discover a foreign nation, but also to promote and uphold our Filipino culture to the world. The program is open to all healthy bona fide Filipino students who show strong interest in the Japanese culture and is knowledgeable in the Japanese language, and must be accompanied by their respective supervisors. All candidates and supervisors are screened by region and selected on a national level. The program includes school exchanges, home-stays with host families, and visits to various historical and technological sites.
Since the reinstatement of the program in 2013, DepEd has endorsed and sent more than 260 delegates—many of initiated projects upon returning to their respective schools sharing their experiences and lessons to others.
In the process of learning about other cultures, it is hoped that they acquire a better appreciation of their own culture and identity and the resolve to help in building the nation. In the words of Br. Armin Luistro, FSC, “…ang ating pangarap ay pagbalik nila dito, ‘yung kanilang pagtingin sa pagiging Pilipino at kanilang mga pangarap ay magbabago at magiging mas matayog ang kanilang pangarap bilang mga Pilipino rin.”