By REYMA BUAN-DEVEZA and
Quite a number of Filipino celebrities share their blessings with the less fortunate. abs-cbnNEWS.com asked around and was glad to find out that many, if not most, Filipino stars are not jaded and self-absorbed but are aware that they are in a position to help those in need--and they go out and take action.
Let’s take for example actor-host Edu Manzano who shared that he is supporting The Adult Night High School (ANHS) of De La Salle University and Bahay Pag-Asa.
Manzano said he’s supporting ANHS since he believes that everybody should be able to afford an education.
"And iyong night high school ng La Salle ay for people of all ages, all income bracket kahit driver, kahit kasambahay, kahit farmers, those who’d never had high school. It gives them an opportunity to get a high school degree," Manzano said.
Manzano believes helping others is not about sentiment, and never about getting a good feeling for one's good deeds, but a duty of every Filipino.
"It’s not about what you're feeling--it’s an obligation we all have to share what you have, so that others may be able to contribute positively to society," he said.
Aside from ANHS, Manzano is also supporting Bahay Pag-Asa.
"(I also support Bahay Pag-Asa) to help first time juvenile offenders--so they’re not incarcerated. The Supreme Court through justice Davide has allowed La Salle to take possession of these young juvenile offenders and teach them cooking, teach them singing, computer literacy.
"So it’s a beautiful program that started in Bacolod. Now [Bahay Pag-Asa] will open in La Salle, Dasmarina," said Manzano, who also leads in the fight against video piracy as Chairman of the Optical Media Board.
Other local stars support Bahay Pag-As as well. There's actress-singer Gretchen Barretto, who gives first-time juvenile cooking lessons. Singer-musician Jose Mari Chan on the other hand gives them singing lessons.
Television personality Kim Atienza, has no specific, regular charity that he supports, but he said that whenever he makes extra money, he donates it to the Philippine Association of Wildlife Veterinarians Inc. (PAWVI). PAWVI is a group of animal doctors that dedicate themselves to providing veterinary services for wildlife conservation and environmental protection.
When Atienza (more popularly known as "Kuya Kim") won on Deal or No Deal a year ago, he gave half of his one milion peso prize to PAWVI.
Dubbed as the Steve Irwin of the Philippines, ‘Kuya Kim’ said that giving to others is also a way of improving one's luck or karma, so that later on one also receives something.
"Ako ang feeling ko immediate ang pagbalik, ang sarap magbigay dahil mabilis lalong lumuluwag ang swerte ko whenever I give," he said.
Beauty inside out
Some of our most beautiful stars show that their beauty is not only skin-deep since they are actively helping others.
Former beauty queen and host Miriam Quimbao who just turned 33 last May 20, celebrated her birthday with almost 20 abandoned kids staying in the children's shelter Mary Comforter of the Poor and the Inflicted.
She said that celebrating her special day with the kids at the shelter is her own little way of helping those who have very little in life.
Former celebrity sweethearts Kristine Hermosa and Diether Ocampo may have parted ways romantically, but they have not stopped their commitment to the KIDS Foundation, which aims to improve the life of today’s youth, especially the underprivileged.
Showbiz princess KC Concepcion on the other hand is a regular donor of Virlanie Foundation Inc. (VFI).
VFI is the largest private non-sectarian child caring institution in Metro Manila. It operates 12 residential homes that provide shelter, food, education and love to over 1,000 disadvantaged children.
Other celebrity VFI supporters include celebrity couples Maricel Laxa- Pangilinan and Anthony Pangilinan; as well as TV anchors Julius Babao and Kristine Bersola-Babao.
1967 Bb. Pilipinas-Universe turned actress Pilar Pilapil is also busy with charitable works and managing her Pilar Pilapil Foundation that was established in 1998. Her foundation is also dedicated to helping underprivileged people.
Other stars’ charities
The ife of the late actor Rudy Fernandez, Lorna Tolentino helps street children through donations to charitable groups.
Actress Sharmaine Arnaiz donates for Preservation and Care of Animals while actress-politician Alma Moreno gives free medicine not only to the residents of Parañaque City and other places.
Celebrity make-up czar Fanny Serrano regularly supports street children through orphanages such as Hospicio de San Jose.
Miss Gay Philippines and actor Ian Valdez raises funds for Golden Acres Home for the Aged to buy foods and medicine while young actress Yasmien Kurdi protects animals by being a vegetarian and member of PETA or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
Aiza Seguerra uplifts victims of calamities by organizing relief fund drive operations like the Tulungan Lo-Cal when Quezon District IV was devastated by floods.
Veteran actress Boots Anson-Roa facilitates housing project for homeless movie workers through Mowelfund and Bahay Kalinga while director Eddie Mayo convenes movie reporters who are homeless to apply for housing plan designed by restaurant magnate Rod Ongpauco.
Gab Drilon is a member of Ninang ng OFW Foundation, an organization which assists Overseas Filipino Workers who have problems in employment abroad, like maltreatment from employers, sexual harassment, physical abuse, mental anguish etc.
Celebrity couple, William Martinez and Yayo Aguila support Hug Me, a project of Psoriasis Philippines seeking to foster proper care and understanding of psoriasis patients. Actor Paolo Contis also inspires persons with psoriasis by conversing with them online.
Rufa Mae Quinto supports th Home for the Golden Gays, a foundation established by movie writer Justo C. Justo to take care of gays fifty years old and above.
Finally, action superstar Robin Padilla continues to provide help through bloodletting for the Philippine National Red Cross.