Monday, October 24, 2016


When I got the invite for this awesome event, I immediately confirmed.  The summit embodies everything that I believed in -- the beauty of social entrepreneurship, the importance of businesses giving back to communities, and being an empowered and fearless Pinay!   On top of that.... my favorite teacher in the world, Teacher Ani Almario is an awardee.  Yey!  Would be forever grateful to her and the Raya School for instilling national pride and love for learning in my children  :)

Human Nature teamed up with De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde to inspire young people to serve the least, the last, and the lost while pursuing excellence with the mounting of the 1st Pinay & Proud Summit.

Themed “Your Goodness Shines”, the summit was held at Benilde’s School of Design and Arts Theatre last October 19. Part of Human Nature’s longstanding campaign to highlight the lifework of Filipino women from all walks of life, Pinay & Proud honors the unique and exceptional values of the Filipina: nurturing, courageous, kind, and beautiful.  

The campaign’s youth focus comes at opportune time. In a report published by the National Youth Commission in 2015, half of our country’s population will be under 25 years old. The report adds that “passion, experience, adventure and meaning are just some words that define today’s millennial.”

“We brought back Pinay & Proud because we felt that many of our youth are looking for role models. Our honorees are not just an inspiration because of their personal achievements in life, but because of their commitment to serve others,” explained Human Nature Co-Founder and President Anna Meloto-Wilk.


Ten women who have made significant contributions in the fields of environmental protection, poverty alleviation and education were honored at the summit.

Pinay & Proud honorees for 2016 included outstanding public school teacher Sabrina Ongkiko, Hindy Weber and Melanie Teng-Go of Holy Carabao Holistic Farms, Ani Rosa Almario, Vice President of Adarna House and Co-founder of Raya School; Anya Lim, Co-Founder of Anthill Fabric Gallery; WWF-Philippines’ Earth Hour Steward and member of the International Olympic Committee Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski; Reese Fernandez-Ruiz, Co-Founder of Rags2Riches and award-winning journalist Kara David of GMA Network. 

Two students from the School for Experiential and Entrepreneurial Development (SEED), Gabrielle Rabino & Rinalyn Pagao were also honored at the event. The two will be the first public school students in Bulacan to earn a scholarship at the prestigious ESSEC Business School in Singapore and France.

Teacher Ani wasn't there to accept her award -- but watching this video, made me quite emotional...

The summit’s 3 sessions are reflective of the weighty issue young millennials face.

The first session, “Path Seeking to Life Giving ,” presented by Sabrina Ongkiko, delved into the long term benefits of short term sacrifices.

Ongkiko’s talk was followed by a provocative presentation on creating out of the box solutions for age-old problems. It will be presented by Anthill Fabric Gallery’s Anya Lim dubbed “Humble Fabrics to Heart-woven Legacy”.

Kara David of GMA Network shared her experiences on bringing Filipino excellence to the global stage and how she wove compassion into each story she did in “Stories of Hardship to Communities of Hope”.


For the women panelists, who were also mothers, they were asked this question "when you've given it all, how do you keep from running dry?

Akiko Thompson-Guevarra answered, "You know your own limits. Even God rested on the seventh day."  Lisa Macuja-Elizalde agreed, "You need to accept that you're not superwoman, that there are only 24 hours in a day."

Looking back, I have had a successful career as a TV writer.  Almost 23 years.  I am a mother, wife, daughter.... and juggling all these responsibilities is not easy.  I must not forget to rest and reflect.  I would like to believe that I did the right decision -- of prioritizing family over work, in the last 2 years.  Life has never been this good.  Not financially -- but there are more things to life than money  :)

The Pinay & Proud Summit is supported by the Philippine Commission on Women. The Pinay & Proud Summit is proudly presented by MyPhone, the first and leading Filipino mobile brand; with media partners Chalk Magazine, Village Pipol, DWDD 1134 Khz Katropa Radio and The Manila Times.

More info about the campaign can be found here:

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