The most extraordinary and awe-inspiring citizens of the Philippines can be found decked in school uniform on a week day. These are kids who love to play, explore and think out of the box. One thing’s for sure: kids surprise us every day with their inquisitive and unassuming nature – whether they catch us off guard with a thoughtful question, come up with the most unique ideas and stories during playtime, or even propose an innovative yet simple solution to life’s daily challenges. Kids remind us that there’s so much to wonder about in our world – and they possess the enormous potential to help make it better.
Wyeth Nutrition, a global leader in nutrition, recently recognized some of the smartest and most creative kids of our country today from the 2017 Philippine Robotics Team at the Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria. 42 young robot enthusiasts triumphed in the 19th International Robotics Olympiad (IRO) held in Qinhuangdao, China from December 16 to 20, having competed against teams from Thailand, New Zealand, USA, Indonesia, Malaysia, Korea, and China. The team, a blend of students from various schools all over Manila, participated in the Robot in Movie Junior, Emergency Rescue Extreme Challenge, and the Creativity Category Junior.
“I thank the coaches and school administrators for providing a nurturing learning environment that fosters love for science and technology. Your untiring support in patiently guiding and molding these children provides the climate that they need to become the science and technology leaders that our country needs,” said the Philippine Robotics Team President, Mr. Anthony Gabitan. “Our kid innovators deserve today’s recognition.”
“We at the DOST are also here to promote kids’ love for science. Our goal is to motivate young Filipinos to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. We inspire the young to explore, experience, and excel. Our ultimate dream is to have you with us in the science community – as world class Filipino scientists and engineers. Together, we will serve the people. Pagyamanin natin ang siyensa, mahalin natin ang ating bansa – Pilipinas.”
Some of the youngest members of the team turned out to be Grand Champions of the Creative Category Junior, for which they were bestowed the Wyeth Nutrition Kid Innovators Special Award for exemplifying the Filipino innovative spirit even at a young age. The five Special Awardees include Brixe Andrei Federico, Izellah Anezka Merdegia and Jona Gabriella Navarez from Colegio De San Juan De Letran-Calamba; Dominic Leo Ramos and Robert Zachary Santos from De La Salle Santiago Zobel School. In the 19th IRO, the two schools presented their robots geared toward improving public safety.
As we all know, parents play a vital role in nurturing their child’s potential to be the best they can be. “Parents should recognize the strength of every child,” advises Gina, mom of Jona Gabriella, when asked for her tips on how to raise a Kid Innovator during the Q&A portion with parents. Dominic’s dad, IT professional Rhett Ramos, adds, “I want to urge not just parents, but also institutions like Wyeth Nutrition to continue to promote the value of innovation especially among Filipino children. Parents, keep encouraging your kids to reach for their dreams.”
“A few years ago, we were presented with the opportunity to support the Philippine Robotics Team, through the Wyeth Nutrition Kid Innovators Special Award. This is a new Wyeth tradition that lives on to this day, as we uphold our advocacy of sparking scientific curiosity among our nation’s brightest and most curious kids,” said Wyeth Philippines, Inc. Head of Communications, Ms. Michelle Pador. She adds, “Raising curious and creative kids so they become catalysts of change requires support of the whole society—parents, the academe, public and private sectors. It is for this reason that we at Wyeth Nutrition are committed to working with parents and other stakeholders in helping children achieve their full potential.”
Wyeth Nutrition and the Philippine Robotics team share one thing in common: a purpose to promote kids’ love for science and passion for innovation towards making a difference in society. The Search for the Wyeth Nutrition Kid Innovators aims to spark awe and wonder for science among children ages 6 to 14 years old. The program celebrates Wyeth Nutrition’s meaningful partnership and shared commitment with parents, the academe, public and private sectors in nurturing and inspiring more children to unleash their full potential to become their best selves.
Video from Manila Bulletin: