ILOILO CITY, Dec. 1 (PNA) — The Provincial Population Office (PPO) is looking forward to complete the construction of 50 teen centers next year in line with the directive of Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. to have the projects done in 2016.
Currently, 26 teen centers have been established in the province. Another two teen centers in the municipalities of Oton and Maasin will be inaugurated this December.
There is also an ongoing construction of 22 others to complete the 50 target teen centers.
Meanwhile, the governor also directed PPO to improve, enhance and capacitate teen centers counselors.
Yee said that they will be hiring professionals or expert guidance counselors and psychologists to improve peer counselors’ manner of dealing with their fellow teens and in handling counseling sessions.
“The governor said that we need to improve the counseling skills of the teen centers coordinators because it is one major factor that we can give essence to the teen centers in schools,” Yee said.
Yee disclosed a decrease in the incidents of smoking, drugs, and drinking of alcoholic drinks among teenagers in the province based on the recent survey of PPO. He said that the teen centers and the efforts of the guidance counselors contribute to the decrease of incidents.
However, based on the survey conducted by the Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality (YAFS), Western Visayas is among the top five region in the Philippines which has the highest incidence of teenage pregnancy in 2013.
“This is the reason why we are doing more intervention in schools,” Yee said.
Last month, PPO awarded 10 teen centers that won in their film contest. The narrative films will be used by PPO in its information education campaign for children to avoid risky behaviors. (PNA)