The Philippine youth with disabilities contingent made a solid performance in the recently held Global IT Challenge for Youth with Disabilities (GITC) in Busan, Korea from November 25-29, 2019 garnering Excellence awards in eLifemap Challenge (Web Browsing), eTool Challenge (PowerPoint and Excel) and eCreative Challenge (Robotics).  The group bested 19 countries in eContent Challenge (Video Making) securing the Best Award while Florenz Jaime Fernandez of Valenzuela National High School (VNHS) was declared the 2019 Global IT Leader.

The GITC is an annual competition in Information Technology (I.T.) for youth with disabilities hosted by Rehabilitation International (R.I.) Korea and their partners to bridge the digital divide and information gaps of persons with disabilities as well as promote their participation towards accessing higher education and decent employment.

This year, the GITC served as an associate event of the ASEAN-Republic of Korea (ROK) Commemorative Summit to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

 The Philippine team is composed of Florenz Jaime Fernandez (Low Vision), Keith Rafael Ignacio (Learning) both from Valenzuela National High School and Karl Francis Du (Deaf), Manila High School and Ace Benedict Dayto (Ortho) General Pio Del Pilar National High School.  Mr. Crisanto D. Perez of the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA) and Angelita L. Nicolas of the Department of Information and Communication Technology (DICT) performed as official coaches and chaperones of the participants.

Florenz Jaime Fernandez and Karl Francis Du both got Excellence awards in individual contests in eLifemap Challenge and eTool Challenge respectively while in team competition, the group got Excellence Award in eCreative and the Best Award in eContent.  Florenz Jaime Fernandez got the highest individual points accumulated from all contests that made him the 2019 Global IT Leader.          

The coaching staff and personal assistants include Ms. Maribel P. Trinidad, Maria Teresa C. Dayto, Jocelyn T. Ignacio and Roschelle G. Magalong who also served as sign language interpreter.  Mr.Juan Paolo E. Espiritu and Ms. Sarah A. Acero of Haraya served as trainers and consultants.

Officer-In-Charge and Deputy Executive Director Mateo A. Lee, Jr. with Mr. Dandy C. Victa as technical support officer served as guest resource speaker in the Innovation and Inclusion (InI) Forum and acted as the head of the Philippine delegation to the global competition.