First Filipina, a young Zamboagueña, bags Zonta Internationa Award PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 30 August 2011 00:00

Zamboanga City will be mighty proud that a young Zamboagueña was one of the top 5 international awardees during the 16th Zonta International Convention  held in Sofitel Hotel last Saturday, August 27. She is the first Filipina to bag this prestigious award that recognizes young women around the globe for their demonstrated leadership skills and commitment to public service and civic causes. 

Zonta International, an international association of professional and businesswoman, believes young women are the key to women's advancement in the field of public service. This award aims to encourage the awardees to continue their participation in in public and political life. Though women account for nearly 50 percent of the workforce, they hold just 18.7 percent of seats in the world's national parliaments as of 31 December 2009, according to the Inter-Parliamentary Union.

Since the program's inception, Zonta has given 601 awards to 534 young women from 50 countries. Established in 1990 by Past International President Leneen Forde, the Young Women in Public Affairs Award honors young women of age 16 to 19, who demonstrate a commitment to leadership in public policy, government and volunteer organizations. The program operates at the Zonta club, district and international levels. Zonta clubs provide awards for club recipients, and district and international awards are funded by the Zonta International Foundation. District recipients receive US$1,000, and five international recipients are selected from the district recipients to receive awards of US$3,000 each.

YWPA awardees are women of any nationality who are students of age 16-19, living or studying in a Zonta district/region at the time of application and demonstrate active commitment to volunteerism m, experience in local or student government , volunteer leadership achievements, knowledge of Zonta International and its programs, advocating in Zonta International's mission of advancing the status of women worldwide

The 16-year Nocum is the current administrator of the Kristiyano-Islam Peace Library (Kris Library) which was founded by her father Armand  Nocum.  This non-profit organization aims to eradicate poverty and conflict by educating the youth. Kris, first library was put up in Manicahan, Zamboanga City and has expanded in other places like in Quezon City, Motalban, Rizal and in Tungawan, Zamboanga del Sur.

Since she was a small girl,  Arizza has been sorting the books at the libraries, writes news articles and letters to donors, facilitates activities with children, and interacts with volunteers, donors and partners of the organization. She graduated with honors from the Philippine Science High School, and currently, a freshman at the University of the Philippines taking up Industrial Engineering. Kris Library has been growing fast under her dynamic administration. She was recognized for her full dedication to the cause of achieving peace through education.

"My dad always tells me: every book we get from our donors and send to the kids takes them one step away from poverty and one step towards a better life. That's what I believe in, too," she said in an interview.


"Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity."1 Timothy 4:12 (KJV)

Last Updated on Thursday, 01 September 2011 10:14