Empowering Dreams: ULAP.org’s Christmas Event Inspires Generosity and Tech Aspirations Among Catanduanes Youth

Written by: Hazel Cherry Tabirao, Audrey Faye De la Cruz

Promoting opportunities and embodying the spirit of giving back, ULAP.org, in partnership with Solidify and Dewise, orchestrated a groundbreaking event titled IT Career Talks + Gift Giving on December 20, 2023, at Bato Rural Development High School in Catanduanes, Philippines. The event aimed to inspire the youth of Bato and BRDHS students by providing a platform for networking, engaging activities, exciting prizes, and gift-giving, all while fueling a passion for technology.

A Collective Endeavor

Solidify, a prominent DevOps Consultancy Company from Sweden, and Dewise, a software development company specializing in cloud, web, mobile, integration, and architecture based in the Philippines and Denmark, joined forces with ULAP.org to make a meaningful impact.

Magnus Juvas, CEO of Solidify, emphasized their dedication, stating, “Each year, Solidify gives a volunteer project, and this year, we’ve chosen to collaborate with ULAP to help people in the Philippines pursue a career in IT.

Henrik Mohr, CIO of Dewise, shared his enthusiasm for technology, delivering a hopeful message: “We love technology, and we hope that you will too.” Marilag Svennevig, the CCO of Dewise and ULAP.org CoFounder, added, “It’s an amazing place to work, especially now more than ever, where we need more young people like you who can solve the world’s greatest problems with the help of technology.

Other contributing organizations included Bato Rural Development High School Supreme Secondary Learners Government, Sanguniang Kabataan-Bato, MaribaTech ApS, and Azure User Group Sweden.

Empowering Youth through Career Talks and Engaging Activities

The event kicked off with opening remarks from Mrs. Annabel Tendenilla, BRDHS Head Teacher V. ULAP’s founder, Michelle Tabirao, followed with inspiring messages and entertaining anecdotes, encapsulating the sentiment that “the world is your oyster,” encouraging individuals to unlock their unique potential.

ULAP scholar John Paul Teves continued the narrative, sharing his life journey and emphasizing the importance of purpose and authenticity. Following these enriching talks, Hazel Tabirao led engaging activities and raffle draws for prizes such as Arduino kits and event swags, fostering a sense of camaraderie.

Lyka Caparas provided valuable digital marketing insights, her experiences as  marketer, wine enthusiast and life-long learner. The event concluded with exciting announcements for ULAP.org’s 2024 programs by Michelle Tabirao, creating a holistic experience. The closing remarks were delivered by BRDHS SSLG President, Rigo Traballo and SK Bato Vice President, Joseph Buendia.

Christmas Spirit of Sharing and Volunteering

Capturing the true essence of Christmas, ULAP.org ensured that every participant received gifts such as school supplies. Fun raffles and games also gave away arduino boards and tech merchandise. The joy and laughter that permeated the atmosphere reflected the genuine impact of the event.

Jonah C. Andersson, an ULAP.org mentor and volunteer based in Sweden, also generously gave away her recently released book, “Microsoft Azure: Cloud Computing and Development Fundamentals,” published by O’Reilly. It’s inspiring to witness #FilipinaInTech continuously inspires the youth of the Philippines, despite the geographical distance.

As the IT Career Talks + Gift Giving event concluded, minds were shaped, knowledge deepened, and smiles adorned the faces of inspired and joyful attendees. Undoubtedly, this event was a gift that keeps on giving, empowering the next generation of tech enthusiasts.


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