World Population Day, July 11, 2014

World Population Day is also celebrated in the Philippines. Here, is the logo of the event sponsored by POPCOM-CAR or Population Commission, Cordillera Autonomous Region, Baguio City, Philippines.

As we celebrate the World Population Day this July 11, 2014, I wish to revisit one of my favorite frame of references when I talk about Population and that is the Population Principle by Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834). It is also known as the Malthusian Growth Model which proposed that: “Population is growing geometrically while Food Production is growing mathematically”. For someone who came from a Third World country and witnessed the struggles of the poor, population and food production make a strong mark on my mind as to how people should cope. For me, one of the coping mechanism should be population control.

According to Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, and I quote “a Malthusian Growth Model, sometimes called a simple exponential growth model, is essentially exponential growth based on a constant rate. Thomas Robert Malthus, wrote An Essay on the Principle of Population (1798), one of the earliest and most influential books on population”. Hereunder is the formula.

Malthusian models have the following form:

P(t) = P_0e^{rt} \,
where

P0 = P(0) is the initial population size,
r = the population growth rate, sometimes called Malthusian parameter,
t = time.

I understand that our Popcom (Population Commission) workers in the CAR (Cordillera Autonomous Region), for example, may find this formula easy to use while I might be thinking how these things go about. To state it simply, may I raise it in the form of questions: What is the population of your city? Is the population increasing in numbers by both – birth and immigration? Is there a positive growth rate within a period of say: five, ten, or 20 years? If the total number of population and population growth rate are in the positive, then we can say that production of food (or sometimes sources of food) should also be increased to answer the need of this population in a given town, city, province or country. We can even ask the question, how much rice, for example, is produced by the farmers in that specific LGU. Is this enough or not? Even if the Community can provide adequate food for their increasing population, it is still wise to control the population.

Many years ago, I was connected as OIC-CPDC of Bacolod City and I recall reading a report about population and growth rate. I discovered that one of the sectors that contributed to the population increase were men and women belonging to the age bracket of 16 – 25 years old. A big number of this pregnancies occur before marriage.

So, without finishing their college education and without a reliable source of income, poverty, unemployment and malnutrition for this new nuclear family is not a far possibility.

That is why, celebrating World Population Day every July 11, enable local governments around the world to conduct public information campaigns and advocacies, seminars, trainings, programs and projects that keep our people specifically the target areas – sexually productive men and women of the community – to be aware of their responsibility as members of the society. That responsibility should include practice of safe sex, family planning and responsible parenthood, among others.

With Local Government’s emphasis or focus on how this vulnerable group – the sexually productive youth – could be helped, we will be assured of the attainment of our common goals of decreasing our population and at the same time minimizing poverty and other accompanying problems. The United Nations define youth as those whose age is 15 to 24 years old.

Again, On Malthus:

Malthus points out that “human nature being what it is, the passion between the sexes appears to be fairly constant and, if unchecked population will double itself every twenty-five years. “POPULATION, when unchecked, INCREASES AT A GEOMETRICAL RATIO. SUBSISTENCE INCREASES ONLY IN AN ARITHMETICAL RATIO.” A slight acquaintance with numbers will show the immensity of the first power in comparison with the second.”

THE PHILIPPINE INITIATIVE

Every town, city, province and region of the country have their own way of celebrating the World Population Day in consonance with the national mandate. The Philippines being a signatory to the UN Protocol on Population and Development. I will focus my example on one of the Cities and Regions in the country – Baguio City and the Cordillera Autonomous Region. My source is PIA-Baguio City. Here it is.

The Commission on Population-Cordillera (PopCom-CAR) has launched its program dubbed 101 XSX in a bid to educate the young on adolescent health and youth development programs. This 101 XSX is a social movement which is anchored on Adolescent Health and Youth Development Program (AHYDP).

Around 200 youth participants coming from Baguio-Benguet and Central Luzon including partners from the government and PopCom staff from Central Luzon were involved.

The program which is technically called (Ex to early sex) will be implemented in the Northern–Central Luzon Cluster covering Regions 1, 2, 3 and CAR.

This project 101 XSX was conceptualized by PopCom-CAR and intends to advocate AHYD programs, services and initiative to the youth themselves, partners and stakeholders.

This program also aims to create a visual impact on the youth and their involvement in the AHYD program goals and objectives and create a movement of organized youth for the youth aimed at promoting life skills and services available for them in relation to sexual health and development.

Included in the launching were exhibit on the issues and programs about youth, a press conference, and a mini concert.

In the mini youth fest, there was a lecture on Reproductive Health and Development programs and an on site activity interactions.

The activity was open to all high school and college students belonging to age group 13-24 years old.

Before the launching of this program, PopCom-CAR has already conducted a mini forum on 101 XSX to members of the media in the region. (JDP/MAWC – PIA CAR)

– See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/index.php?article=101391670470#sthash.0mMYGM0M.dpuf

Finally, Earthniversity hopes that your local initiative in the celebration of World Population Day will be a great success. If you wish to contribute articles, pictures or video of your World Population Day celebration, please contact us. We will surely give you a space.

References:

1. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia – On Thomas Robert Malthus and Malthusian Growth Model.

2. pia.gov.ph – Popcom Leads World Population Day.

3. http://www.google.com – On Logo of World Population Day 2014 and Logo of World Population Day 2014 of Population Commission at Cordillera Autonomous Region at Baguio City, Philippines.

Thanks to Ma. Aprila Cruz and Job David Manalang of PIA and Popcom – Baguio City

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