Sunday, January 7, 2018

Miss Iloilo Dinagyang 2018 celebrity judges revealed

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The Grand Coronation Night of the Miss Iloilo Dinagyang 2018 will be on January 20, 2018 at the University of San Agustin Gym.

Here are some of the celebrity judges and guests (L-R):
- Sinon Loresca (Eat Bulaga's Catwalk King)
- Bea Rose Santiago (Miss International 2013)...
- Andrea Biondo (Gentlemen of the Philippines & second runner-up at the Mister Universal Ambassador Pageant)
- Maureen Wroblewitz, Guest of Honor (Asia's Next Top Model Cycle 5 Winner)
- Rachel Peters (Miss Universe 2017 Top 10; Miss Universe-Philippines 2017)
- Norman Tinio (Pageant Executive & Blogger of
- Shamcey Supsup-Lee, Host (Miss Universe 2011 3rd-Runner-up; Miss Universe-Philippines 2011)
- Maxine Medina (Miss Universe 2016 Top 6; Miss Universe-Philippines 2016)

Tickets are now available at Alta Moda, Gen. Luna st., Iloilo City. A free public viewing will also be provided outside the venue.

Kodak Express by Colours Profile at Gaisano Capital Lapaz

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Chef Miguel Treñas

Image may contain: 1 person, closeupIntroducing Chef Miguel. He also runs the Ang Kamalig restaurant of the RJT Group but lends his expertise on continental dishes at Geronimo’s.
Chef Miguel is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Napa Valley, California, USA. One of the top graduates of his class, his love and passion for new food creations and flavorful dishes can be seen in the menu he has cooked up for Geronimo’s.
Watch Chef Miguel cook at their open kitchen. Try the pasta, burgers, steak, sandwiches. Take a picture of Chef Miguel working in the kitchen, and the best submission wins a dinner from two.

See you all at Geronimo's! Say Geronimo! Hey Geronimo!

Virtualahan: Breaking down employment barriers for PWDs

(From L-R):  Kickstart Ventures President Minette Navarrete; Globe Telecom Head of Innovation Mikey Garrovillo; Virtualahan co-founders Ryan Gersava, Rose Gersava- Villamor, Elsie Losala-Gersava, Josh Gersava;  and Ashoka Philippines Chairman Rico Gonzalez. Virtualahan is one of the five winners of  Globe Future Makers Program.
Finding a sustainable source of income is one of the biggest challenge that People with Disabilities (PWD) face on daily basis. People with medical, mental and physical limitations are not just battling for their condition but enduring the inequality in the workplace primarily because of discrimination.
Virtualahan, a social enterprise based in Davao City is changing the system using a business model that upskills, employs, and empowers people with disabilities to become productive members of society.
"We equip people with skills and the right mindset so they can start working online as remote employees for digital businesses around the world. We have taken advantage of the power of the internet and the growing outsourcing industry to fulfil our mission which is to promote inclusive and sustainable employment, decent and productive work for all in a workplace that treats everyone as an equal," said Ryan Gersava, Virtualahan Founder.
Virtualahan was recently declared as one of the winners of Globe Future Makers Program, the social innovation program of Globe Telecom held in cooperation with the Singtel Group of Companies to help enable emerging social innovators create a positive impact on society with the help of technology.
"We see a lot of potential in Virtualahan in solving the need for gainful employment of PWDs and those with medical conditions who often face discrimination. We believe that innovations like this one plays a key role in making wide scale impact to help drive social development in the Philippines," said Chelle Gray, Director for Globe Citizenship.
"With the  technology support and mentorship of the Globe Future Makers program this will help us deal with our challenges in delivering our services, optimizing the tech aspect, improving our e-learning platform, even cut other practices to save on costs by using different tools and expansion to help those with no access to the Internet," declared Gersava.
Gersava, a Licensed Medical Technologist, put up Virtualahan when he was denied of employment due to a medical condition despite having high qualifications. With the help of two siblings, Josh an IT professional and Rose, a registered nurse, they set up Virtualahan which is a play on "virtual" and" eskwelahan," a Filipino term for school. The social enterprise is a 100% virtual company which keeps their operations lean and highly functional. It is a very innovative and highly scalable model that uses technology to deliver positive impact.
Virtualahan recruits, screens, and qualifies candidates to undergo an intensive six weeks' skills and capacity building program that allows unemployed PWD to become self-earning and dependable members of the family and the community. Successful graduates are then provided with employment support through direct hiring, referrals, and online job preparation. They are employed as virtual assistants, customer service representatives, transcriptionists, data managers, among others.
"The work from home model is the best strategy that we found to help people with mobility issues to earn a decent income. We create structure, accountability, management and the opportunities for advancement and set these people to deliver maximum value. In the process, we are building a support network that meets in person and online to nurture confidence, teamwork, and social equality among our members, "added Ryan.
For the past two years, Virtualahan served 127 beneficiaries from 20 different cities across the country. It has also represented the Philippines in major international competitions like the ASEAN Impact Challenge in Singapore, has spoken to international conference like the Social Enterprise World Forum in Hong Kong, was accepted in prestigious fellowships like The DO School in Germany, The Global Good Fund in USA, and represented the country at The Youth Assembly at The United Nations in New York.
Winning the Globe My Future Makers is an important milestone for Virtualahan in expanding its advocacy to more areas in the country and eventually to the world.

Thursday, January 4, 2018


Globe Telecom will comply with the NTC-DICT-DTI Joint Memorandum Circular No. 05-12-2017 prescribing a one (1) year expiration period for prepaid load.  Effective January 5, 2018, all Globe prepaid load with denomination of 300 pesos and above will carry a one (1) year expiration period. 
We welcome the latest directive of the DICT granting a six months extension on the implementation of the 1-year load expiration for denominations below 300 pesos.  
Telecommunications as a business requires complex, advanced and real time systems that should be extensively tested, bearing in mind the impact to our 57 million prepaid customers, including transactions and voice, SMS, and data traffic that these systems support. The 6-months extension will give us ample time to prepare for the smooth and seamless implementation of the expiration change across all denominations.
Among the changes that we will address are the following:
1.   Expansion of Capacity. Extension of the load expiry will require additional capacity and additional cost. While we have built adequate capacity for 2018, we will need to build more capacity and purchase additional licenses to accommodate the change. This will include purchase of licenses and software programming by third party vendors.
2.  System Tests. We will conduct optimization and interoperability tests to minimize any adverse impact to customers when we implement changes and expand the capacity of  several information technology systems.  
3.  Additional Number Series. To fully implement the change, we will need additional number series from the NTC. Otherwise, we will run out of numbers as a direct result of the longer load expiration period. Moreover, we need to define and fully test the new number series before making them available for our new customers.

Furthermore, there may be new conditions applied to prepaid services within the next six months to ensure a sustainable quality of service. -Atty. Froilan Castelo, General Counsel


IVolunteer: Making a sustainable impact in volunteerism

The young and dedicated iVolunteer team.  From L-R:  Danielle Najos, Jasmine Salem, Jennilyn Redublo, and Danalynne Dumaliang
Building a better Philippines takes a collective effort and not just a one-man team. But volunteering towards nation building takes a whole lot of education and understanding before one can truly grasp the whole concept of volunteerism and create a sustainable impact. Often, there are also mismatches for demand for volunteers and availability of volunteers.
These are the pain points shared by JB Tan and Bel Padlan, the people behind iVolunteer, one of the five startups which won the Globe Future Makers social innovation competition participated in by 135 individuals and groups. Tan noted the difficulties in finding volunteering opportunities even during the onslaught of Typhoon Ondoy in 2009 which opened up the floodgates for more volunteers.  People want to volunteer but they didn't know how and where to go.
This situation prompted Tan and Padlan to come up with iVolunteer where they partnered with many non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to help develop volunteer engagement facilities, make a sustainable impact on the community and create a holistic program for the beneficiaries. iVolunteer also helps volunteers find opportunities as well as encourages people to sign up as volunteers. IVolunteer is not just a website but a venue for education on how to become a volunteer.
"There was really a mismatch when it comes to demand for volunteers and the available volunteers. But there are problems every day that necessitates the need for volunteers, so why don't people volunteer every day? With our website, we want people to become conscious first and educated enough on how to become a volunteer, and to realize that everyone regardless of status in life can be a volunteer," shared Tan. "Volunteers are your so-called every day heroes, often unheralded, always in the background, never mentioned often, but are the ones most adamant in helping build a nation."
With their vision about volunteering and leveraging technology in furthering their cause, Tan said the benefits they received from winning the Globe Future Makers Program could help them reach out to more people.
"With access to Globe, we have a big marketing channel through SMS, Data or Internet to promote volunteerism. Technology can really help us elevate the level of understanding and professionalism among volunteers, remind them that they signed up for this to show their commitment, and probably institute a rewards system, though we should be careful about this. We want to delight them as well but be cautious against making it a livelihood. So that's about using technology, facilitate volunteerism and provide Volunteer Delight."
Chelle Gray, Globe Citizenship Director said:  "Globe always espouses volunteerism even among its employees so this is something dear to our hearts.  Hopefully, through Globe Future Makers, we can help iVolunteer further their cause and encourage more people to participate in this worthy undertaking."
The Globe Future Makers program which Globe introduced early this year seeks to influence and build a whole ecosystem of social innovators with the help of technology. Globe teamed up with Ashoka, the world's largest professional network of social innovators as well as venture capital firm Kickstart Ventures to give the winning teams an opportunity to receive coaching and mentorship from some of the best social innovators around the world as well as meet possible investors.
At present, the people that run iVolunteer are 100-percent volunteers and no one gets paid.  The organization has more 200 partners inside and outside of Metro Manila and is still looking at expandings its operations to Cebu, Davao and other regions.
Volunteer work which people may sign up with include tutorials particularly for out-of-school youth, soup kitchens, tree planting, relief operations, medical missions, among others.
Tan said their goal is to grow non-volunteers to become one-time volunteers and eventually transform them to become committed ones. The benefit of volunteerism is really two-fold: immediate output to the community and the intrinsic transformation to the volunteer himself in terms of perspective and maturity. "We want to move people eventually to higher levels of commitment that creates longer term impact; this is what we call 'volunteer evolution.'"

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Globe Futre Makers: MilkTrack - Solving the problem of breast milk scarcity

From L-R:  Kickstart Ventures President Minette Navarrete,  Ashoka Philippines Chairman Rico Gonzalez, MilkTrack Founder Kevin Facun  with teammates Mark Sampayan and Richie Ryan Tan, and Globe Telecom Head of Innovation Mikey Garrovillo

The importance and value of breast milk for newborn or sick babies can never be understated. Stories have been written numerous times as to how babies' lives have depended much on the availability of breast milk while its scarcity brought dire consequences.
As a research project undergraduate, Kevin Facun and his team were tasked to create innovative solutions to answer basic problems in his community in Malolos, Bulacan. One of these concerns involved health care, particularly in hospitals in his home town where he noticed a peculiar need for breast milk.
Facun said they visited neonatal units and saw how breast milk is considered a basic necessity for babies for them to survive. "We heard lots of stories on the need for breastmilk, especially for premature babies and it's so hard to find trusted sources. What most people and mothers don't know is that breast milk is very important for premature or sick babies because formula milk is hard to digest."
The Philippine Milk Code strictly implements breastfeeding in all hospitals nationwide, but the lack of available breast milk is still prevalent, particularly in government hospitals. He said that there are 11 milk banks nationwide and only four are government owned. Private milk banks sell breast milk at P500 per bag, and a baby needs at least 3 bags a day. "So you can imagine how hard it is, especially among mothers from poor families. There's really a huge demand but supply is limited. Couple this with lack of awareness and education so we came up with an application to help for supply to cope with the demand because we know that saving lives is of importance," declares Facun.
Thus, Facun's team came up with "MilkTrack," a mobile application that will facilitate the logistical and information dissemination concerns when it comes to sourcing breast milk. Among its key features are information focused on storage of milk, proper expression and others that aim to correct common misconceptions about breast milk, plus a breastfeeding location tracker through Global Positioning System (GPS) that can zero in on government establishments, some malls and even academic institutions where breastfeeding stations are located.
Users can also use MilkTrack to sell, buy or donate milk or place an order as a beneficiary, and have the milk delivered right at one's doorstep. "We follow the guidelines of the Philippine Human Milk Bank. Mother donors need to undergo a strict testing process on HIV and Hepatitis B. We also track the medical records of donor applicants. We started this in our area in Malolos, Bulacan that served as a pilot community."
MilkTrack received a big break when it was picked as one of the top five winners of Globe Future Makers Program which seeks to influence and build a whole ecosystem of social innovators.  The program received 135 entries from individuals and startups from all over the country who want to make a difference in society through the use of technology.
 "We know that the award will take us to an even better place to help realize our dream. With the magnificent partners at Globe, Ashoka, and Kickstart and their invaluable mentoring, we are confident that we will realize that dream," Facun said.
"We believe in the advocacy of Milktrack and what they want to achieve. Globe wants to build a better world and espouse the creation of social innovators and game-changers in order to create a brighter tomorrow especially for the next generation," said Chelle Gray, Director for Globe Citizenship.
MilkTrack  plans to put up its own facility instead of going to the nearest milk bank to have the milk pasteurized.  "Other than selling the product, we wanted a modern-day bayanihan initiative because this concerns the lives of mothers and babies. Through crowdsourcing, we want this to eventually resort to a healthier nation," he said.
Facun figured its best to focus on his hometown first within 3 months but they are already eyeing Metro Manila since it has the biggest and greatest demand. The Philippine General Hospital alone, he said, needs at least 10 liters of breast milk per day.
Although MilkTrack primarily operates through its mobile app and website, Facun said there are also plans to establish a direct partnership with hospitals and doctors, with priority on Pediatrics and Obstetrics-Gynecology because they already have the network. 

Monday, January 1, 2018

GCash scan to pay rolls out in transport industry

GCash is expanding its scan to pay feature in the transport industry through a partnership with Emotors, Inc. Emotors, Inc. is the operator of Zum e-Series which provides e-shuttle service for tenants and employees of the W Group, Globe Telecom, and Mynt.
"This is just the beginning of our foray into the transport sector.  Wherever cash is used, we want to offer a quick and hassle-free alternative," said Ernest Cu, chief executive officer of Globe Telecom.  Globe, together with Ant Financial and Ayala Corp., owns Mynt, the financial technology company which operates GCash mobile wallet service.

Globe Telecom's collaboration with Emotors, Inc. is hinged on three factors: innovative technology, clean and sustainable electric transport, and the demand for services that avoid commuting pain points. 

Emotors, Inc. is a hundred-percent Filipino-owned social enterprise committed to environmental sustainability through the Zum e-Series, an electric tricycle that can seat six passengers. Compared to traditional vehicles, the electric tricycle is quiet, economical, and emits a lower carbon footprint.

Globe Telecom President and CEO Ernest Cu trying GCash scan to pay for Emotors e-shuttle service.  EMI CEO Elizabeth Lee holds the GCash QR sticker while Mynt President and CEO Anthony Thomas (right) and W Group CEO Francis Wee (2nd from left) look on.

Through the service, commuters can enjoy cashless payments by scanning the QR code provided by the pilots. GCash's scan to pay feature is the only mode of payment available.

The Zum e-Series offers point-to-point transport from the WCC Building to Market! Market! and vice versa.

To use the scan to pay feature, customers must simply download or update the GCash app on their smartphone, tap or point the phone's camera at the QR code, and input the amount to be paid.

Customers can load their GCash wallet in any of the 12,000 GCash partner outlets nationwide, including Globe Stores, SM Business Centers, Robinsons Business Centers, Puregold branches, 7-Eleven Barcode Cash In, TouchPay kiosks, and many more.

GCash aims to make cashless payments the preferred choice of payment as it eliminates the hassle of bringing money and waiting for change. Merchants don't need to pay for expensive equipment and will only need a QR sticker linked to a GCash wallet.

To date, GCash has partnered with top establishments like Ayala Malls, Robinsons Department Stores, SM Stores, Megaworld Lifestyle Malls, Ministop, Mercato Centrale, among others. GCash will soon roll out to the parking segment with a partnership with Megaworld's Uptown Mall.

Learn more about GCash by visiting and following them on their social media channels:,, and


Globe #PlayItRight campaign goes to the MMFF via ‘All Of You’

Globe is seeking to change the landscape of entertainment by promoting the digital lifestyle and at the same time protecting the industry through its advocacy #PlayItRight. It pursues its mission to bring more original content to Filipinos as it brings Globe first ever co-produced film, "All Of You". The beautifully crafted romantic comedy is among the movies participating in the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF).
"Producing original content also comes with the responsibility of educating our customers to consume the right and legitimate way through the advocacy #PlayItRight," says Quark Henares, head of Globe Studios.
The #PlayItRight campaign champions the entertainment industry by producing or releasing quality online or offline content and making more accessible to audiences.  It encourages Globe customers to consume their entertainment in the right way, by avoiding piracy. Piracy undervalues and takes away the creative efforts that each member of a production team puts into making a movie or staging a show.
The noted director adds that as Filipinos enjoy their annual film fest through the MMFF, they need to learn and appreciate the hard work that comes with putting together a movie – from the number of people down to the hours. 
"We are proud of the first MMFF entry and reminding the public to watch 'All of You' and the rest of their MMFF favorites the right way."
The movie, which is headlined by Derek Ramsey, Jennylyn Mercado, Sam Milby and Solenn Heusaff is a romcom set in Taiwan about two individuals who find modern day love through Tinder. After three years of being together, the couple finds themselves at a point where they have to make the major decision to stay with each other or keep looking for #ThePerfectMatch.

Miss Iloilo Dinagyang 2018 celebrity judges revealed

6.2K Likes & 1,317 Shares 7.3K Likes & 2,956 Shares The Grand Coronation Night of the Miss Iloilo Dinagyang 2018 will be...