June 09, 2013

Greeneration Ambassadors on the Cover of Zee Lifestyle

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.

June 07, 2013

Health and Comfort in a Shoe

Everyday comfort is one of the things that we hope to have as we brave through our busy schedules.

Comfort is one of the things that people shouldn't sacrifice. Health is always a serious issue, and we should never compromise the well being of our body. With that said, wouldn't it be a relief to have an everyday pair of shoes that brings comfort and health together?

Hong Kong shoe brand Dr. Kong held a small gathering, inviting its founder Raymond Ng to come over to Manila and share more details about his brand. Raymond Ng has had this earnest pursuit to inform everyone and stress the importance of foot health. He explained that the shoes we wear create an impact on our knees and joints, therefore affecting what we feel and how we walk. Even the slightest problems in our footwear can cause pain and discomfort that affects not only the knees and joins, but even areas like our back and upper parts of the body. It was informative and got most of us aware of what to consider in buying a new pair of shoes.

After the talk and interview, all the guests were invited to try their one of a kind "Check and Fit" foot examination. The Dr. Kong team is trained to determine the feet's health and its current condition. Through this, the sales of Dr. Kong can assess which among its selection of specialized insoles is the right type for your feet when you buy a pair from their store. These machines are available in all Dr. Kong stores in Manila, ready to use when you need to know what you need for your feet.

Of course, I had to try it out. For the first test, it was to check wether or not my feet were aligned. It was great to hear that my right foot was normal, but was a little concerned that my left was slightly unbalanced.


The next test was to determine what type of feet I have. This was something I was so curious to know since I've always heard people having flatfeet, but with no idea how it is determined. I was asked to step on the gel-like surface of the device for ten seconds. Afterwards, green footprints came out and it was determined that I had pronated feet.

Dr. Kong has an extensive shoe line that includes leather shoes, loafers, sandals, and even rubber shoes for both men and women. They also have baby and kids shoes, proving that it's never too early to take care of your feet. A definite must, these shoes should be considered by the older folks when buying a new pair as they might already experience difficulty in walking. 

Everyday comfort goes a long way and Dr. Kong shoes might make walking and working a lot easier for you.

Dr. Kong

June 02, 2013

Attempting To Race

I've always wondered what makes driving or riding fast cars exhilarating.

Some weeks back, the uber fab PR Frank Briones invited me to the launch of the Lotus F1 simulator in Manila. This got me all excited since I've never driven a fast car before. This improvised experience is probably the closest that I'll get to trying it, knowing how bad traffic is in this city. Other than that, it was an opportunity for me to see in person, the globally renowned racer Marlon Stockinger.

Guests from the media were first treated to a heavy afternoon snacks before the official press conference. Sitting in one of the tables, I was able to observe Marlon's reserved personality - one that I found a contrast to his passion for a high-energy sport like racing. He was quiet, yet very polite and accommodating, talking to the media people and sharing his experiences as an international racer.

Afterwards, we were all escorted to the lobby of the newly opened area of Glorietta. From there, a horde of people surrounded us, trying to have a glimpse or take a quick snapshot of Marlon. The people who were there might not all be racing enthusiasts, but I'm sure that they all wanted to extend their support to a pride of the Philippines.

I was with my friend Geolette Esguerra during the simulation and we were both so eager to try it out. It may seem like another video game but this was more precise. A wrong turn or bad break timing can get you off the road or driving in the opposite direction. Trust me, it wasn't easy at all. I don't know how these racers drive at fast speeds, still keeping their mind on the turns while trying to be ahead of everyone else. They make it seem so easy on tv! 

Geolette and I were laughing afterwards and we both enjoyed our fun challenge. Well, I'll leave the race car driving and winning to Marlon. While at the presscon, Marlon's mother briefly sat in our table and I saw a woman who was genuinely friendly and was sincerely proud of her son, as he stood in front and addressed his guests. I hope Marlon achieves more success in his career, as he continues to make his fellow Filipinos proud of who he is.