Extracurricular activities in youth tied to social engagement later in life

admin   •   February 4, 2017   •   3659

FILE PHOTO: FIFA volunteers celebrate a goal scored by Neymar at the media centre in Recife’s Pernambuco arena during the World Cup. Photo: Reuters

(Reuters Health) – People tend to become less involved with community work and social groups as they age, but those who were most active in their high school years are the most likely to stay engaged as they age, researchers say.

Youth may be an important time for people to develop a sense of themselves as contributing to society, and this identity may last throughout life, the study team writes in The Journals of Gerontology: Social Science.

There are many benefits to being involved in a community, including more social relationships, greater cognitive engagement and better health, lead author Emily Greenfield, an associate professor of social work at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, told Reuters Health.

“Participation in voluntary groups is thought to be especially important for older adults, who are more likely to lack other major social roles (such as through paid work) and who might face economic and health barriers that jeopardize their inclusion within their communities,” Greenfield said by email.

“Encouraging young people to become civically engaged is important not just for the here-and-now, but might have effects that last over decades to come,” she said.

To see whether early participation in voluntary groups is related to social engagement later in life, Greenfield and a colleague used data from a study that followed Wisconsin’s 1957 high school graduates through the age of 72.

The study checked in with participants at ages 36, 54, 65, and 72 years and asked about their involvement with various community groups, such as church groups, labor unions, parent-teacher associations, sports teams, political groups and charity or welfare organizations.

The study team also used data from high school yearbooks to determine whether participants were involved in volunteer activities, clubs and sports earlier in life.

On average, they found, participation in volunteer organizations and other groups was highest in midlife and declined when people reached their 60s and early 70s.

Community participation increased most rapidly between ages 36 and 45 and continued increasing until about age 54. At 54, participation began to decline and the lowest levels of community participation were among 72 year-olds.

People who were involved in extracurricular activities in high school were more likely to stay involved throughout their lives, particularly if they had done four or more activities when they were young. They also had less of a decline in participation between middle age and older age.

“Communities that need volunteers often do not consider the value that older adults offer,” said Dawn Carr, an assistant professor of sociology at Florida State University who studies aging populations and community participation.

The study’s measurements may not fully capture older people’s involvement, as they emphasized how many groups people were involved in, while older adults may tend to narrow their focus, said Carr, who was not involved in the study.

“Previous research suggests that we engage in fewer organizations but contribute more time to the organizations in which we are engaged,” Carr told Reuters Health by email.

Organizations or communities that give older people a chance to be valuable and learn new skills are more likely to keep them engaged, Carr noted.

SOURCE: bit.ly/2jtJX06 The Journals of Gerontology: Sociology, online January 19, 2017.

Lorenzana sees ROTC as good way to reawaken love for country among youth

Maris Federez   •   August 26, 2019

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana (Presidential Photo)

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana believes that the best way to rekindle the essence of love for the country among the youth is to reintroduce to them the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).

Lorenzana said the ROTC will teach the youth the value of discipline, respect for the higher-ups and service to the country.

Lorenzana added that it is the duty of everyone to impress into the hearts of the young people the essence of loving the country like what our heroes have done in the past, offering the lives for the country. (with details from Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

Youth urged to learn martial arts, other sports to wean off gaming addiction

Robie de Guzman   •   April 2, 2019

Kids train in martial arts at Bonifacio Javier National High School

MANILA, Philippines — More than two billion people play video games worldwide, based on the 2017 report released by the Global Games Market intelligence firm Newzoo.

Gamers come from all ages, with the average age being 35, based on gamer demographics reported in the 2015 Essential Facts about the computer and video game industry by Entertainment Software Association (ESA).

The PEW research Center also noted in a 2018 survey that overall, 84 percent of American teens said they have or have access to a game console at home and 90 percent said they play video games of any kind. The “teens” mentioned in the report refers to those ages 13 to 17.

For most, gaming is a fun hobby but for others, it can be destructive and can lead to significant impairment in personal relationships, work, education and overall well-being.

The growing number of young people persistently engaging in digital or video-gaming has led the World Health Organization (WHO) to classify gaming addiction as a mental health disorder in its 11th International Classification of Diseases (ICD).

The WHO described gaming addiction as a pattern or recurrent gaming behavior so severe that it takes “precedence over other life interests.”

READ: Gaming addiction classified as mental health disorder by WHO

In many parts of the world, gaming addiction has already been identified as a major health issue.

How do we detoxify the youth from excessive computer gaming?

A group of sports enthusiasts in the Philippines suggest for parents to enroll their children in sports playing activities, such as martial arts.

According to JM Carlito Lañada, Jr. of Kuntao ng Pilipinas, practicing martial arts not only instills discipline in young people as it also helps them exercise and avoid bad vices.

“Actually, napakahalaga sa pagiging martial artist mo matuto kang disiplinahin yung sarili mo, then mababawasan yung pakikipagbarkada magkakaroon ka na ng sariling self-discipline. ‘Yung mahabang pasensya and ‘yung respeto sa lahat ng tao sa paligid,” he said during the third Inter-school Youth Martial Arts Games that opened in Bonifacio Javier National High School in Mandaluyong City last Sunday. The tourney aims to teach self-defense and discipline among young people.

(Being a martial artist can help instill discipline in a person. It can also help reduce idle time with bad peers as it will promote self-discipline, patience and respect for people around you.)

John Joseph Hugo, head of Jendo Mandaluyong Association, also believes that getting the youth involved in martial arts and other physical activities will help them wean off video-gaming.

“Kaysa mag-gadget, maglaro ng computer mag ML [mobile legends],yun ang nakakasira ng kalusugan, ng pangangatawan at pag-iisip ng isang bata. Dito, ‘pag nag-martials arts ka, mamomotivate kang ma-discipline sarili   mo, maiiwas sa bisyo,” he said.

(Instead of using electronic gadgets or playing computer games such as ML, that can lead to health and mind deterioration in children, they should practice martial arts to motivate them, instill self-discipline and avoid bad vices)

Theresita Biscaro and Engr. Ecel Aquino, who both lead local martial arts groups, also attest to the positive effects of playing sports in detoxifying their children from gaming and gadget use.

“Like yung mga anak ko, lagi na lang [nakaharap sa] computer or sa cellphone. They have time para maalis sa paggamit ng mga ‘techy.’ Then sa karatedo sila, ‘yung oras nila naisasabay sa martial arts, at the same time time, physically nagiging fit sila,” said Karatedo sa Pilipinas Vice President Engr. Ecel Aquino.

(My kids often use computers and smart phone. To give them time away from ‘techy’ gadgets, they practice karatedo, which also makes them physically fit)

“Nagkaroon ng time ‘yung mga bata na hindi humawak ng gadget kahit na anong gadget habang nandito sila sa training. Nagii-start kami from 1pm-4pm yung mga bata bawal humawak ng gadget so talagang concentration nila ‘yung pag tetraining nila martial arts,” said Theresita Biscaro, the President of Jendo Philippines Association.

(Children can have time away from any gadget during training. During training from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., kids are not allowed to hold any gadget as they need to concentrate when practicing martial arts)

Martial Arts enthusiasts also stressed that practicing sports and other physical activities are important things to help the youth, especially those who are addicted to video gaming, to help them regain equilibrium of mind, rekindle physical relationships and improve their overall well-being. – Robie de Guzman (with reports from Nel Maribojoc)

Kids train in martial arts at Bonifacio Javier National High School

Vietnamese teachers join UNTV and MCGI volunteers in a visit to Tam Duc Orphanage

UNTV News   •   November 29, 2017

VIETNAM — Nadia and Bao Tram are both working as teachers in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.

With their Filipino friends, the two volunteered to join a visit to Tam Duc Orphanage in district 4.

According to Bao Tram, his participation in the activity of the volunteers of UNTV and Members, Church of God International (MCGI) helped her value the blessings in life and giving joy to others, especially among orphans.

“I am very happy to join today’s charity with you. Through the charity, I realized that there were so many unfortunate lives around me that needed help. If possible I hope you will have more such charity. On behalf of the Vietnamese community, I thank you very much,” Vietnamese volunteer, Bao Tram Nguyen Hoang said to MCGI members.

The group entertained the children by playing with them, as well as teaching them how to dance and sing.

They also provided the children with their needs like milk, yogurt, diapers, toys and books.

The management of the orphanage acknowledged and thanked the volunteers for visiting and helping the children.

They are hoping the group of volunteers will return again to bring smiles to the faces of the children who are left without parents to guide them. – RJ Timoteo | UNTV News & Rescue


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