Tag Archives: Advocacy

Bookworm Alert – June 2015

One of my friends said she wants to read here in my blog the books I read. I love to read. From reports, blogs, books to newspapers – reading has been a habit ever since young. It has helped me survive life – land at my fulfilling jobs, be prepared and be an effective advocate. Reading also helps me be a conversationalist. So here, let me share to you the books I am reading this month:


1. Doing Justice – Bible Studies on Advocacy (World Vision)

I got this for free! I rummaged through Philippine Commission on Women’s library collection when they were throwing some books. That was in 2013. I got a whole box of books. Last week, I opened the box because I was looking for something then I got this. It is from World Vision, a Christian international NGO so the book is having advocacy at the core. Being in international development, this book is such a great help to align my work with God’s will. I read this every morning.

2. The Power of Determination (Joyce Meyer)


This one is from Fully Booked book sale, original price was 630 pesos but got it for 100 pesos! Good deal, right? It is filled with daily bible verses and her insights on how to live a life to be Christlike. As the title says, it highlights what it takes to be determined – faith, courage, boldness. It is a good quick read. I read this at night before sleeping.

20150624_073754_resized3. Cure for the Common Life: Living in your Sweet Spot (Max Lucado)

This is my first Lucado book. But at first chapter, he already got me! This is about finding your purpose in this life. He is talking about finding you “sweet spot” – where passion and calling meets. I like his writing and narrative style. Sharing anecdotes, bible verses and life lessons is all throughout the book. I have been learning a lot from this. I bought this I think with my first salary in Tacloban last year, the Philippine Christian bookstore was just beside our office. I normally read this on free time.

4. True Love (Robert Fulghum)

This is not a pocketbook with a romantic novel haha! Next to All I Need to Know I learned in Kindergarten, this is my second Fulghum favorite. 20150624_073819_resizedIn Uh-oh, he announced that he likes to receive short stories on love – all kinds of love – he was flooded with people sharing their stories to him. I knew that I badly want that book, but unfortunately National Bookstore, Fully Booked, Powerbooks, even the bookstores in UP Diliman did not have it. How I got this treasure – my friend Michelle got this for me. She found it in Book sale for just a whooping 30 pesos. Panalo! I always have this on my bag. It is not meant to be read in one seating. I will lend you for 15 minutes when we meet. I have this in my bag. 🙂

My favorite book though is still the Bible. When I was a freshman in UP, on my first day one student said “The Bible is fiction.” Whatever they think, that is still the best book for me. It speaks life. And most importantly, God speaks through it. I love metaphors and stories, life lessons and guidance on how to live a fruitful life.

“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12 (ESV)

Go share your books for this month too!


20150624_073836_1_resizedP.S. I always write on my books, or highlight, circle, heart haha lahat na ng shapes! I have been using these Muji Gel Pens, I like to recommend it too. Per color is 65 pesos, but it goes a long long way. Mine I have bought 3 years ago pa until now di pa ubos.

Ideas that Matter 2015 focuses on Women Empowerment

Two weeks ago, I received an invitation from an organization called Ideas that Matter in University of Sto. Tomas, Manila. I was invited to be the guest of speaker for the topic “Woman of Courage.” Wow. They found my thesis online on political empowerment of women in the Philippines, and felt the importance of imparting to students the significance of women empowerment.

I prepared my talk last week, and I was just happy because things kept popping out of my head as I make a note for the talk. Then made a presentation using some of my personal photos. (I will share the text in my next blog).

So this morning, I went to UST to give a talk to students from the College of Fine Arts and Design. It was overwhelming to see a lot of them, but I was pumped up with their energies and passion. My talk went on for an hour, then some of them asked questions. One of the questions was “In simple terms, can you define women empowerment?”



That was difficult because women empowerment is never simple. But it is through women empowerment that we can achieve gender equality, I shared. Women are discriminated in all sectors of society, from education to employment. It is critical that we fight for women’s rights as human rights. Empowering women can be as simple as giving us the platform to speak, to providing equal access to resources.

It was a great experience for me, sharing my life learnings in the short journey so far after graduation. I really hope they were inspired to hear from me how to be a “Woman of Courage.” Thanks UST Ideas that Matter. Sa uulitin!


P.S. I really love the token of appreciation from them. This happens when you get to talk with cool advertising students. 🙂




What makes your heart beat?

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Many people are trying to do anything to search for what their true passion is. For some, they discovered it when they were working; for others, it took them years to fully understand what they really want to do in their life. I think it is very important to understand what your calling is and live fulfilling what you are called to do.

When I was in primary school and asked what I want to become when I grow old, I proudly say I want to become a lawyer. I have such a loud and solid voice, and people always tell me it would really fit when you are arguing in court. Growing up, I always enjoy TV shows and movies that have scenes in the court, thinking someday I will also do that.

I reached Grade 6, and I became our school paper News writer. Then in high school, I intentionally chose Journalism over Home Economics. I became the Editor-in-Chief of Ang Gabay, our school paper in Filipino. Writing became my way of voicing out my thoughts and influence people. It then led me to consider becoming a journalist as a profession.

I vividly remember how I easily chose Broadcast Communication as my first option for undergraduate course when I filled out my UPCAT form. I know deep in my heart that I want to be a communication major in my four years at the university. But circumstances did not permit me to take up BA Broadcast Communication. I passed and was admitted in Department of Speech Communication and Theatre Arts in UP Diliman. Let me tell you, until now I am thanking God for bringing me to that department. Who I am today has been influence by my UP training as a Speech Communication major.

During all this time, there is something that didn’t change: I am a girl scout. This has exposed me to be independent, to lead others, and to empower girls. In 2006, I became a volunteer at the National Headquarters in Manila that gave me the opportunity to participate in national, as well as international events.

God is with me through all this journey in knowing what my true calling is. My spiritual family also helped me understand God more, and helped me in developing my relational skills.

Put all this together, my heart beats to be the voice of young girls and women. I want to be forever an advocate for young people. Being an advocate is not a profession, it is a way of living. God has blessed me with skills that I can use efficiently. On every opportunity I am asked to speak, I know it is an opportunity to influence lives. Extending help to every needy is helping myself as well. This is my way to change the world.

Last November 2, 2012, I went to the UN High Level Panel meeting with young people in London. There was uncertainty, but I know I will be there to fulfill what I have been wanting to, that is to represent the voice of young people. True enough, I was given a chance to speak in front of eminent persons around the world, and other young people with the same passion. It was surreal; I was on the verge of crying because I was overwhelmed with that once in a lifetime opportunity. I was there, standing, in behalf of the young people worldwide.

My heart belongs to the young people, if I would specify it would be the girls and young women. I envision a world where every girl goes to school, where she has access to health rights, where she is given the voice in the decision-making, where she is empowered. Reality tells us that we have to do more to achieve that vision. I want to be the change; I am doing my role in this society for my dream to become a reality.

Only few people discover the path they want to take at a young age. I am grateful I discover it this early, so that I can have every chance to develop this passion and live a fulfilled life.

You are not too young or too old to know what your true passion is. During one of the speeches of a Korean advocate Ms. Hana Biya, she asked everyone a significant question we need to answer in life: What makes your heart beat?

I am asking the similar question to you. Go find it.