Swedish king in town

By Pia Lee-Brago, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jan 25 2014 09:56 AM | Updated as of Jan 25 2014 05:56 PM

MANILA, Philippines - King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden will see the projects of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines in Typhoon Yolanda-hit Tacloban City and other related projects of the Swedish government during his first visit in the country.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Gustaf would be in the country from Jan. 24 to 26.

The king, guest of honor at the Invitational Peace Jamboree of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines in their centenary year, yesterday called on President Aquino, who is the country’s chief scout by virtue of Republic Act 7278.

Vice President Jejomar Binay, concurrently the national president of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines, hosted last night a dinner together with officials of the World Organization of the Scout Movement and the World Scout Foundation.

The king will also visit other projects of the Swedish government implemented through the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The DFA said the king’s commitment to the Boy Scout movement has been life-long. From being a scout himself as a young man, he has served as honorary chairman of the World Scout Foundation (WSF) since 1977.

The WSF raises funds for various scouting projects worldwide, including the Ticket to Life project in the Philippines.

The king is also actively involved in issues related to nature and the environment, personally instituting the King Carl Gustaf Environmental Competition and the Royal Colloquium, an international environmental symposium held annually in Sweden with participants from all over the world. He has been chairman of the Swedish branch of the World Wide Fund for Nature since 1988.

King Carl XVI Gustaf is second cousin to Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom and is related to the reigning monarchs in Europe.

‘The Ring’ star visits Tacloban

Meanwhile, Hollywood actor David Dorfman was moved to help Typhoon Yolanda victims when he saw news about the aftermath of the most devastative typhoon in history.

This is the reason he has chosen to come to the Philippines for the legislative exchange program he needs as part of requirements at Harvard Law School, where he is a candidate for a law degree next year.

Dorfman, who boasts of a 4.0 General Point Average in college, is on a three-week legislative exchange program at the Philippine Senate under the office of Sen. Juan Edgardo Angara.

“The reason I chose to come to the Philippines (is) obviously the tragedy in Tacloban... I want to help. I have seen the tragedy, I want to be part of the solution,” Dorfman told The STAR.

“Hainan (Yolanda): It’s important that (for) tragedy like that (to) happen, particularly to a place with such kind people, you got to help. I want to take advantage of that.

“And also, it’s laboratory for learning how the legislative processes work because you have the same structure with America but totally different application,” he added.

Dorfman is turning 21 this Feb. 7. He was admitted to the University of California at Los Angeles at age 13, and graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in Geography. – With Christina Mendez