Images and Text by VIANCA GAMBOA
The youth deserves more than a pat on the back, or even a medal for doing remarkable things. The betterment of their training ground, whatever it is, concrete or otherwise, will give these deserving individuals a better outlook in life. It will give them a more ambitious drive to pursue their sometimes impractical but nevertheless important dreams. It can benefit them in the long run.
Aiming to bridge the gap between the youth and an active lifestyle in a gadget-centric generation, Milo has been hosting sports tournaments every summer break in grass roots communities as part of its Summer Sports Clinic campaign. In 2018, it headed out to 170 different barangay courts across the country to make a better home for the athletic youth. Seventy of them have been refurbished and equipped with trophies, medals, jerseys, and other sports equipment.
The Barangay Milo Liga paved for modernized and accessible facilities that also engage everyone to play fair and square by hanging around tarpaulins with words like “Matuto ng disiplina” (develop self-discipline)—transforming them into “MILO Courts of Values.”
The kids of Jaime Cardinal Sin Village in Sta. Ana, Manila are among the lucky community players to enjoy a heated game of basketball in their newly renovated court. Coming from separate teams of the Champ Camp, Iverson Quinial, Jerome Casimsiman, Drewh Caramoan, Alvin Lopez, and Jastine Abalayan aged 13 to 15, competed last Saturday for the Milo Best championship. Every summer, basketball keeps them preoccupied for the whole day, even joking that their bath time and lunch go in between breaks. They believe that the Milo campaign helped them a lot in developing their basketball skills as well as values needed in real life like discipline and creating a balance between leisure and education. It also keeps their body fit and healthy. This makes a huge difference to the parents of the children who are now more inclined to sports rather than computer games.
“It is our hope that by reaching out to different barangays and local sports communities around the country, more parents and kids will realize the value of sports, and ultimately build a nation of champions,” said Willy de Ocampo, vice president of Nestle Philippines, Inc.
“All these efforts are being made so that the barangay’s young residents and even children from surrounding communities and nearby schools will have access to well-conditioned sports venues and become inspired to go out and play. We want to encourage kids in the barangays to become more active through sports, and not be too consumed by their gadgets,” said Lester P. Castillo, Milo sports executive. “We envision Barangay Milo Liga to be a training ground for young athletes to pick up at least one sport, develop their skills, and hone their character as future champions. We are very thankful to the barangays who have partnered with us to rally behind this advocacy.”