Advocacies bring about a strong compassion and support for an important cause or idea.
While working with the Climate Change Commission (CCC), I have been part of campaigns and summits that not only spreads awareness about our changing environment, but also influences the consciousness of the people to transform their mindset. This was how the idea of promoting lifestyle changes was brought to the table, and how the 'Greeneration' campaign was conceived.
Enough of the always so dismal headlines on climate change. We at the commission believe that it is high time to be more proactive and positive with the issue. The idea of unplugging an electrical device when not in use or switching to LED lights to lessen energy consumption, recycling and reusing, garbage segregation, or simply conserving water can help address the growing concerns of climate change.
One of the most crucial agenda that we have is to involve the youth of today to be more conscious about their actions as these can and will affect others. Also, they are the generation most vulnerable to climate change since they are already feeling its effects, and will continue to suffer through these changes in the future. Some months back, the idea of having youth influencers who can carry out and embody our advocacy came to mind. I remember meeting with Secretary Lucille Sering of the CCC as the team thought of and shortlisted the people worthy to become the Greeneration Ambassadors.
Three lovely and intelligent ladies became the CCC's Greeneration Ambassadors. They are: Bianca Gonzalez, celebrity host and tv personality; Pie Alvarez, mayor of San Vicente in Palawan; Anna Oposa, Chief Mermaid of the Save Philippine Seas group. They best fit the characteristic of the shapers whom the youth could look up to, and the right role models who could instill the needed change for the youth of today.
At the last Greeneration Summit held in Cebu, these three ladies were formally introduced. They shared their personal insights on how each individual could do their part. Coincidentally, a day before our summit, I arranged an interview between Secretary Sering and editors of Zee Lifestyle magazine - Cebu's lifestyle bible. It was not even a formal interview, but rather a fun banter and chat filled with interesting info and tons of laughs. Weeks after our Cebu summit, I was contacted by one of the editors if we were open to collaborate with them on their idea of placing the Greeneration Ambassadors on the cover of their magazine. So, after coordination and approvals, we were on!
One sunny day, I flew in with Bianca to Cebu for the cover shoot. Pie and Anna flew in earlier as they had an earlier call time. With all three ambassadors flying out on the same day, schedules had to be carefully planned.
We were all welcomed by Zee Lifestyle editors David Cua and Shari Quimbo during the shoot. The venue, the lovely Crimson Resort in Mactan, Cebu, with a picturesque view of the horizon by the beach. The editors of the magazine played with the idea of Anna Oposa's role as chief mermaid. The editors envisioned the ambassadors as majestic mythical creatures that take refuge by the beach, frolicking by the sand or floating on water. Each ambassador had their solo and group shots, with Anna bravely taking on the challenge of doing the underwater shoot. It was amazing!
The cover was shot on a cliff by the beach, overlooking the horizon. We were all trying to get a glimpse of the shoot but was a little scared of falling on the rocky shores below. Everyone had to rush and get the money shot as the sky was slowly turning dark and the natural light of the sun was fading. The energy during the shoot was fun, with everyone anxious to see the final outcome.
behind the scenes photos of the cover shoot
I entice everyone to grab a copy of Zee Lifestyle's socially conscious June issue. The cover story beautifully and concisely narrates the diversity of each of the three ladies, with climate change as one of the important advocacies that brings them together. Also in this issue is the interview on Secretary Lucille Sering who I work closely with at the Climate Change Commission.
Sharing my interview with Secretary Sering of the CCC to those who would like to know of her:
Climate change need not be a lost cause. We all can still do our part in saving this planet. It's all a matter of knowing what to do, and influencing others to do it too. Amidst their busy schedules and other priorities, these three ladies serve as key people who prove that every individual has something to contribute in addressing climate change. If they can, certainly you can too.