April 30, 2019

Turning e-waste around: Brother Philippines offers opportunity for savings from e-waste—and a way to deal with unwanted electronics the right way

It’s not uncommon for Filipino households to have one or two printers, copiers, scanners collecting dust from misuse. They might have upgraded to better models, found repair costs too expensive for a malfunctioning machine, or have no further use for the items. More often than not, these households found it too inconvenient to dispose of the machines—too bulky to throw out with the trash and virtually nowhere to pass them over for recycling.

In the photo: Mr. Glenn Hocson the President of Brother Philippines.

E-waste disposal can be a challenge—especially since the components within machines cannot be simply categorized to non-recyclables or biodegradable. At some point, we need e-waste disposal experts to come in and help.

Finding an opportunity to provide a little help for Filipino households with their e-waste dilemma, Brother Philippines initiated regular trade-in promotions, currently dubbed the “Switch to Tank” promotion, encouraging customers to use the genuine Brother Ink Refills only.

“The mechanics we’ve always had are very simple,” said Glenn Hocson, Brother Philippines President. “We ask customers to bring in their unwanted printers, copiers, fax machines, and scanners to select location, which will garner them discounts for their next printing equipment. Not only was this promotion a good opportunity for us to allow customers to try and purchase our products for less, but also for them to properly dispose their unused machines sitting around in their homes.”

For several years now, trading in machines for a Brother model of their choice enabled customers to experience all the practical yet impressive features of these products for themselves. But what happens to the machines that Brother Philippines collect?

“The trade-in events are a good way to boost sales,” shared Mr. Hocson. “But at some point, we have to think about the proper disposal of the machines brought to us. Obviously, we can’t store these in our own facilities or just throw everything out for the garbagemen to collect. So, we worked with a local e-waste, DENR-accredited recycling company, HMR Philippines, to help us responsibly deal with the machines our customers traded.”

HMR Philippines takes the traded machines from Brother Philippines, and break each machine down to its individual parts. Anything that can be reused safely (without potential risk of harm) will be saved for recycling, and the residual materials will be passed on for final treatment with another service provider.

“We made sure that our e-waste recycling partner will not just take the machines off our hands, but is also accredited in handling, transporting, and actually disposing the e-waste properly,” added Mr. Hocson“. It’s a small step toward becoming fully green, but along with our push for refill-tank printer systems to reduce waste from consumables like cartridges, we hope to contribute to efforts to help the environment.”

To learn more about the brand and its products, visit the Brother Philippines website at www.brother.com.ph, like its Facebook page (facebook.com/BROTHERatyourside), and follow @BROTHERPhils on Twitter and @BrotherPhils on Instagram.

#AngPagbabalik ! John Lloyd Cruz first endorsement appearance after two years! Is he coming back to the limelight?

Photos and videos of matinee idol John Lloyd Cruz  have been surfacing after being on hiatus from the showbusiness since 2017.

Cruz, one of the most bankable actors of the Philippine cinema and very effective endorser once again proved that his fans are still waiting for his return. In a teaser video, which lasted only for a few seconds and only shows the back shot of John Lloyd, and posted in the 
Facebook page of the number one selling shawarma Turks a few weeks ago had been viewed 3.2M times, shared almost 800 times and gained a huge number of comments.

Without any clue in that teaser video, his fans already assumed that it was him in the video. Even actress Bea Alonzo posted on her Instagram a screenshot of that teaser video, which garnered almost a million likes.

This Monday morning Turks finally revealed in the 1-minute and 17 seconds video of John Lloyd Cruz showing the actor walking through different destinations, which somehow depicts his sojourn. The video is very simple, yet there’s drama the way it was created, and in a very subtle shot, he stopped and took a bite of a Turks pita donner.

The rugged look of John Lloyd Cruz in the Turks video titled Ang Pagbabalik is way too far from his guy-next-door image and a lot of people in the industry are asking if this signals his return to the limelight. His fans are still wondering about the life he’s been living since his hiatus.

According to Turks president Gem L. Zenarosa that during the course of his talks with John Lloyd Cruz, they never talked anything about his showbiz career or plans. He added that he got him as the latest ambassador of Turks because of his great confidence working with him.

“I am really grateful that John Lloyd trusts our company, he is a brilliant and very creative young man. Aside from acting we have discovered some of his remarkable talents,” Zenarosa stressed.

The Ang Pagbabalik according to Zenarosa is actually about Turks Small Pita Doner, which will be available again in all its branches.

“John Lloyd is the best endorser for this because like him, despite his absence in the showbusiness for a couple of years, the warmth and love of his fans for him never dwindles. With our Small Pita Doner we believe that our customers will be happy to know that it is back in our menu,” Zenarosa explained.

Just like Cruz who is seen to have a different image since he last appeared in the big screen, a clear indication that the actor is recreating himself and exploring different grounds, Turks is also doing the same thing to keep its customers excited whenever they visit a branch.

In time for the release of Cruz’s endorsement video, Turks also released to the market its newest offering — Turks Rice Bowl, which is a complete meal. You can choose beef or chicken for your rice topping, and it is priced at P50.00. The Small Pita Donner on the other hand, is priced at P35.00.

“To keep up with the demands of our customers, Turks continues to improve our menu and offerings to satisfy the discriminating taste of our loyal patrons,” Zenarosa stressed.

John Lloyd Cruz now joins the roster of endorsers of Turks such as Piolo Pascual and son Inigo Pascual.

To watch the full video of Ang Pagbabalik visit https://youtu.be/Uh0WwLnIEDQ

You can also watch the video on Turk FB page: official.turks.

Dream Cruise Flash Sale! Exclusive Labor Day Offering of BUY ONE, GET ONE For Explorer Dream’s 7-Night Queensland and Great Barrier Reef Cruises!

Dream Cruises ushers in the holiday with an exclusive Labor Day offering onboard the newly-launched cruise ship purposely-built and recently renovated for the Asian luxury market with Explorer Dream!

Filipinos can get the chance to avail of a Buy One, Take One promo for the Explorer Dream 7-Nightcruises sailing out of Sydney, Australia to take on the Queensland and Great Barrier Reef itinerary for as low as USD822 for the 1st guest.

Truly evolving the Dream Cruises brand into “Asia’s Global Cruise Line”, Explorer Dream allow guest to experience the wonders of “Down Under” as the cruise will be making stops in Newcastle, Gladstone, Sunshine Coast, and Brisbane on the following sailing dates: Oct 24 and November 03, 10, 17, 24.

Booking for the promotion can be done through any local travel agency!

For inquiries, call (02) 836 6080 or email salesmanila@gentingcruiselines.com

ACTS-OFW Party List supports the LGBT Anti-Discrimination Bill

An LGBT Alliance meeting and solidarity dinner with ACTS OFW Partylist was held at Club Filipino, Greenhills, on Monday , April 29. 

During the dinner / meeting at Club Filipino, ACTS-OFW Party List Cong. Aniceto "John" Bertiz III reiterated their group's commitment for the passage of the Anti- Discrimination Bill in Congress. The said bill will protect the rights of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgenders in the workplace and in the schools, as well as the right to set up a business or practice a profession. It will also give them the equal rights that are the birth right of each and every Filipino

Cong. Bertiz gave this commitment to some members of the LGBT community, particularly to those who attended the solidarity event. They gave the commitment after consulting with the group and with their many members overseas, some of whom are also LGBTs

"We have Overseas Filipino workers who are also members of the LGBT community We have seen how hard they work so they could provide for their families back home. The LGBTs are the bread winners and the backbone of their families. They have sent their brothers and sisters to school, and have taken care of their parents' medical needs. Therefore, we should give them the protection that is enshrined in the Bill of Rights of our Philippine Constitution."

For their part, Ladlad Chairman Professor Danton Remoto lauded this commitment from a party list whose focus is to have the best ethical practices in the overseas recruitment industry. 

"I am also an Overseas Filipino Worker teaching at a British university in Malaysia. I welcome the consultation do ACTS-OFW Party List with us regarding LGBTQ rights. Fighting for the rights of our LGBTQ will always be a prime advocacy of Ladlad Party List." Professor Danton Remoto is running for Councilor of District 3, in Quezon City.

ACTS-OFW means Alliance for Community Transformation and Service for Overseas Filipino Workers," which was founded in 2010.  ACTS-OFW Party List pushed for the ten-year validity of our passport and the creation of 1,000 more slots daily for OFW applicants. They also worked for the exemption of the P550  terminal fee, among many other legislative measures to help our airport OFWs, dubbed the "unsung heroes of our country." 

Flex your financial muscles with the new Praxis Financial Gym

PRAXIS  Philippines officially opened a new facility where the public can flex its muscle to learn how to manage hard-earned money well.

Dubbled as Praxis Financial Gym, it serves as an activity center where the attendees are taught how to effectively manage their personal finances to prepare for their own financial freedom

Only 2% of more than 100 million Filipinos are financially literate, according to a World Bank study. This means that 98 million Filipinos are not skilled in making smart money decisions. 

Mastering money is critical especially at this time when we are faced with the rising prices of commodities and a weakened peso. 

Although the world of money can be difficult to understand, there is one activity that can serve as both an entertaining and learning experience to teach people how to effectively manage their money to prepare for their own financial freedom. 


Praxis was developed in Singapore, a financial literacy solution that focuses on enablingfinancial literacy and education through a Gameplay. This unique and effective engagement and learning tool is now being utilized in educational institutions, financial services companies, government organizations and other leading companies in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines with more coming soon.

In an exclusive Praxis Media Event held at the newly built Praxis Financial Gym, attendees got the chance to experience the Praxis Gameplay and got a jumpstart in managing their personal finances through a fun and interactive learning experience that inspires people to take action at the Praxis Financial gym.

Praxis can be customized to its specific audience, whether for students as part of their class, for companies’ employee wellness programs, or for financial institutions’ recruitment and training sessions or for their sales and customer engagement. 

Each Praxis Gameplay is facilitated by a certified Game Master directing its flow and announcing realistic “Breaking News” such as health scares, drastic changes in stock prices, and other news bits players need to make decision about their money. 

“We’d like more people to visit the Praxis Financial Gym to help in promoting financial literacy by letting them experience financial challenges and learn critical information that will help them fulfill their financial dreams,” says Mari-an Albert, Praxis Philippines CEO.

Mari-an believes that Praxis will help people in more ways than o

"Just like in a regular gym where customers can access trainers to guide them on their workouts, here, at the Praxis financial gym, licensed financial advisers can partner with Praxis to guide people and help master money. This gym tones your money muscles for life.”

April 29, 2019

ANGKAS Joins Fintech Philippines As E-Commerce Advisor

Angkas, the very first app-based motorcycle ride-hailing service in the Philippines, has joined the Fintech Philippines Association (FPh) as advisor to the board of trustees. 

Fintech Philippines Association (FPh) announced that Angkas will take seat as member of the organization’s advisory board. This was announced in the April edition of FPh’s monthly forum held recently at The Ark in Makati City. 

Dubbed the “Fintech April Mixer,” the forum saw major players in financial technology and related industries coming together to discuss the role of transport and logistics in the rising e-commerce industry as well as issues related to water technology and social enterprises.

George Royeca, Head of Regulatory and Public Affairs of Angkas, the ride-hailing app that changed the way people think about public transport in the Philippines, led the panelists in the discussion of their vision of a more financially inclusive country where smaller entrepreneurs can use their platform to scale up their businesses.

“Fintech and e-commerce are largely interdependent because fintech provides online payment platforms that allow e-commerce to thrive,. Without fintech and payment innovations, global e-commerce will not grow as much as it did in recent years,”  Royeca notes. 
“The teching up of small e-commerce players in the country is something that we in Angkas, in our capacity as advisor to Fintech Philippines, will recommend as a priority undertaking for the near future,” Royeca reveals.

Fintech Philippines executive director and trustee Amor Maclang, in turn, underscored fintech’s role in shaping global e-commerce. “Fintech Philippine’s Association strives to promote all e-commerce players, and recognize all contributions to global and micro e-commerce players by creating access to the constant development and improvement of online payment systems,” she stresses. 

“Our mission in Fintech Philippines is the democratization and access to the technologies by allowing online merchants and service providers to also target as many people as possible through safe and secure means,” she adds.

The association’s board of trustees was also presented during the forum. 

The FPh board is composed of : 
- Justo Ortiz of Uniobank, chairman 
- Mark Vernon of TagCash,  vice chairman and treasurer 
- Mark Gorriceta of Gorriceta Africa Cauton & Saavedra, corporate secretary  
- Amor Maclang of GeiserMaclang Marketing Communications Inc., executive director and trustee
The  Trustees : 
- Arvie De Vera of Unionbank  
- Edison Tsai of Seedin Technologies Inc.,  
 -  Ida Tiongson of Opal Portfolio Investments  
- Gerry Cruz 

During the last forum featured 5 leaders in the e-commerce industry :
- George Royeca, Head of Regulatory & Public Affairs of Angkas  
- Ronald Rodriguez, Founder and CEO of eebeelee  
- Steve Sy, Founder and CEO of Great Deals eCommerce Corp  
- Au Soriano, Founder and CEO of PinoyTravel  
- Archit Anand, Founder of Omnirio

The Fintech Philippines Association is the largest and most inclusive association in the Philippines that promotes digital entrepreneurship, among other things.

K-Pop sensation BTS performs at the "2019 Billboard Music Awards"


SKY brings the highly-awaited debut of global superstars BTS on the ‘2019 Billboard Music Awards” stage as they perform their newest collaboration track with chart-topping singer and songwriter Halsey, “Boy With Luv,” this May 2 live on Blue Ant Entertainment.


After the hit Korean group made history by becoming the first Korean group to win at the Billboard Music Awards last 2017 with a nod in the Top Social Artists category, the group went on to nab the same award last year. The group is out to reclaim the recognition this year but it is also up for the Top Duo/ Group Award this time around, up against Dan + ShayImagine DragonsMaroon 5, and Panic! at the Disco.
Apart from the performances from BTS and Halsey, viewers can also anticipate the return of the Jonas Brothers after 10 years as they join forces to sing their No. 1 smash hit “Sucker.” The said comeback track made them the first group to open at No. 1 of the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart in more than 20 years.
Other performers at the ‘2019 Billboard Music Awards’ are Lauren DaigleKhalidPanic! At The Disco and Sam Smith & Normani, and 2019 ICON Award recipient, Mariah CareyKelly Clarkson will also return as the host.
The “2019 Billboard Music Awards” will broadcast live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Thursday, May 2 at 8:00AM on Blue Ant Entertainment available on SKYcable channels 53(SD) and 196(HD), and SKYdirect channel 35.

A Trip Down the Memory Lane: 7 Manila Churches during Visita Iglesia

As a dominantly Catholic country, one of our practices every Holy Week is Visita Iglesia. Traditionally, Catholics visit around 7 churches to pray, reflect, and honor the Blessed Sacrament during Holy Week. The visiting of churches is done to commemorate the suffering of Christ, as well as to meditate and ask for penance. 

Here are churches within the Metro which you can visit this Holy Week:

1) Binondo Church 

Photo by Lawrence Ruiz - Own work, 
CC BY-SA 4.0,https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=51373004

Start your journey in one of the oldest churches in Manila. Binondo Church is also known as Minor Basilica of Saint Lorenzo Ruiz and Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Parish. It was built by the Dominicans and is located in Binondo, Manila. It became a place of worship to converted Chinese Christians back in the day when the trade between Chinese and Filipinos started to increase. Today, a number of Binondo dwellers and curious tourists still visit the parish. 

2) San Sebastian 

Photo by Geela Garcia

San Sebastian, also known as Minor Basilica of San Sebastian, boasts Gothic Revival architecture, and is the only steel church in the Philippines and Asia. The original structure was actually built using bricks, but because of a Chinese Filipino uprising which burned down the original structure, the current edifice was built to be fire and earthquake-resistant. 

3) Quiapo Church

Photo by By Judgefloro - Own work, 

Quiapo Church, also known as Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene, is one of the most famous basilicas in the Philippines. It is because of the said-to-be miraculous sculpture of the Black Nazarene which was carved in Mexico and was burned on its way to the Philippines. Large numbers of devotees visit every Friday, edging their knees forward to the sculpture to ask for miracle and or forgiveness. 

4) Baclaran Church 

Photo By Ramon FVelasquez - Own work, 

The Baclaran Church is also known as the National Shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help is one of the largest Marian churches in the Philippines. The shrine was established by Redemptionists when they began the novena in 1948. At first, only 70 people attended the novena, but after several sessions, the attendees doubled, and is now reaching thousands of devotees. Today, the church serves as home to many Marian devotees. 

5) San Agustin

By Patrick Roque (talk) (Uploads) - Taken using camera with model DSC-HX5V, CC BY-SA 3.0,https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=61019655

San Agustin Church is one of the two religious sites inside the walled city of Intramuros, and is the Philippines’ oldest church. Built by the Augustinians, the structure was modeled after beautiful temples in Mexico. It boasts a grandeur in architecture, very rich and grounded to the Spanish colonial history. The building has its own museum inside, which features great artifacts about the Philippines’ cultural heritage. 

6) Manila Cathedral

By Patrickroque01 at English Wikipedia, 

Manila Cathedral is a neighboring church to the San Agustin Church inside Intramuros, and is dedicated to the Immaculate Conception or the Virgin Mary. Initially built as a simple parish back in 1571, it received multiple reconstructions after several calamities hit the city. The cathedral was then upgraded with LED lighting, advanced sound system, and carbon-retrofitted structural foundations which add a modern detail to its beautiful Roman stone facade. 

7) Malate Church

By Ramon FVelasquez - Own work, 

Last but not the least is Malate Church, also known as Our Lady of Remedies Parish. It follows a Baroque style of architecture and houses a statue that travelled from Spain-- it is of Nuestra Señora de los Remedios, the patroness of childbirth. The small but beautiful house of prayer is also strategically located in front of Plaza Rajah Sulayman and Manila Bay. 

After a long day of Church hopping and driving around Manila, have a quick stopover and unwind at Century Park Hotel (CPH). Grab a soft and fluffy bibingka and hot chocolate at Cafe in the Park before heading back home.

Launched in 1976, the Century Park Hotel remains as one of the finest hotels in Manila. It is owned and operated by Maranaw Hotels and Resort Corporation and enjoys a mix of local and international patrons. The renowned establishment has over 500 rooms in varied types and facilities for a complete dining and leisure experience. To know more about Century Park Hotel, visit www.centurypark.com or contact information@centurypark.com.ph and telephone number: (632) 528-8888.


Global Superstar Returns to the Stage for Her First Performance of New Music on Television in More Than Four Years

Hosted by Kelly Clarkson, the “2019 Billboard Music Awards” Airs Thursday, May 2 at 8:00 AM on Blue Ant Entertainment

© Andy Lecompte

dick clark productions announced thatrevolutionary global icon Madonna will take the stage with Latin superstar Maluma for the worldwide television premiere performance of their brand-new track “Medellín” at the “2019 Billboard Music Awards.” Madonna and Maluma join previously announced performers BTS featuring Halsey, Kelly Clarkson, Lauren Daigle, Jonas Brothers, Khalid, Panic! At The Disco and Sam Smith & Normani, as well as 2019 ICON Award recipient Mariah Carey. The “2019 Billboard Music Awards,” with returning host Kelly Clarkson, will broadcast LIVE from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Thursday, May 2 at 8:00AM on Blue Ant Entertainment available on SKYcable channels 53(SD) and 196(HD), SKYdirect channel 35, Destiny Cable channel 53, and Cablelink channel 37, and will feature this year’s hottest musical acts, unexpected collaborations and buzzworthymoments.

Returning to the award show performance stage with new music for the first time in over four years, four-time BBMA winner Madonna last performed on the BillboardMusic Awards in 2016 with a tribute to Prince.Maluma will be making his BBMA debut. “Medellín” is the first track from Madonna’s highly anticipated 14th studio album Madame X which will be released on June 14.

Talent Billboard Chart Facts:

· Madonna

Queen of Pop Madonna has long been royalty on Billboard’s charts. The superstar was named the most successful solo artist in the 60-year history of the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, based on a special ranking to honor the chart's anniversary last summer, and holds the record for the most top 10 hits of all time among all artists on the Hot100 (with 38). Further, she also holdsthe record for the most No. 1s by anartist on any single Billboard chart (46 on the Dance Club Songs tally). Throughout her career, the Billboard Music Award-winner has claimed eight No. 1 albums on the Billboard 200 (of 21 top 10s in total) and 12 No. 1s on the Hot 100. Further, shecontinues to hold the BillboardBoxscore record as the highest-grossing female touring artist ever, with over $1.3 billion earned from herconcerts.

· Maluma

Since Maluma’s Billboard chart debuta little more than five years ago, he’sscored 12 No. 1s on the Latin Airplay chart, a pair of No. 1s on the Hot Latin Songs chart, and has seen both of his albums hit No. 1 on the Top Latin Albums tally. In 2018 he scoredboth his first top 40 effort on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, and hisfirst top 40 single on the all-genre Billboard Hot 100 songs chart. In total, his catalog of songs have collected nearly 2 billion on-demand streams in the U.S., according to Nielsen Music.

“Billboard Music Awards” nominees and winners are based on key fan interactions with music, including album and digital song sales, streaming, radio airplay, touring and social engagement, tracked by Billboard and its data partners, including Nielsen Music and Next Big Sound. The awards are based on the chart period of March 23, 2018 through March 7, 2019. Since 1940, the Billboard charts have been the go-to guide for ranking the popularity of artists, songs and albums, and are the ultimate measure of success in music.

The “2019 Billboard Music Awards” is produced by dick clark productions. Mark Bracco, Barry Adelman, Kelly Clarkson and Robert Deaton are executive producers.

For the latest news on the Billboard Music Awards (BBMAs), exclusive content and more, be sure to follow Blue Ant Entertainment on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BlueAntEntertainment/, @BlueAntEntertainment on Instagram and @BlueAntEnt on Twitter.

April 28, 2019

STATE OF WORLD POPULATION 2019: Unfinished Business: the pursuit of rights and choices for all

Despite remarkable achievements in the past five decades, much more must be done to break the barriers that prevent women, men and couples from fully exercising their reproductive rights and choices, says new UNFPA report released today

POPCOM Undersecretary Dr. Juan Antonio A. Perez III with UNFPA Philippines Representative Iori Kato at the turnover of the State of World Population 2019 Report, entitled “Unfinished Business: the pursuit of rights and choices for all”

The year 2019 is unique as it marks two important milestones in the field of sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights: 50 years since the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) began operations globally, and 25 years since the landmark International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo where 179 governments agreed on a call for all people to have access to comprehensive reproductive health care, including voluntary family planning, and safe pregnancy and childbirth services. UNFPA’s State of World Population Report 2019 traces advances in reproductive health on the anniversaries of these two important milestones.

These two events—the launch of the first United Nations agency dedicated to addressing population dynamics and the reproductive health needs of the world’s people with Filipino national Rafael Salas as its first Executive Director, and the declaration of a global commitment to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights—have fundamentally shaped the lives of women and families, and the societies in which they live, in the decades that followed. The revolutionary changes have been made in measurable and immeasurable, profound and trivial, permanent and fleeting ways.

Activists, advocates, government agencies like the Philippine Commission on Population and Development (POPCOM) – which also celebrates its 50th anniversary this year - and UNFPA have jointly advanced the transformations that ordinary citizens see around themselves today and have helped tear down various and evolving social, economic and institutional barriers that women and young people have faced in exercising their reproductive rights over the past 50 years. As a result, more women today have access to the information and services they need to decide for themselves whether, when or how often to become pregnant.

Much has been achieved in the Philippines since 1969. The average number of births per woman was 6.0 in 1973. Today it is 2.7, even though the country has the highest total fertility rate in the ASEAN region. In order to reach the national target of 2.1 average number of births per woman under the Philippine Development Plan (PDP), the Philippines needs to step up its efforts. 

“UNFPA takes pride in having partnered with the Philippines and witnessed together so many remarkable achievements together in the areas of sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights in the last five decades. And yet, there should not be complacency. Much more needs to be done to empower those who are not yet able to enjoy their rights and whose choices are still constrained,” says UNFPA Philippines Representative Iori Kato. 

According to the 2017 Philippines National Demographic and Health Survey, about 17 percent of currently married women aged 15-49 have expressed intention to space or limit their children but are not using any method of family planning. Such proportion of unmet need for family planning services is highest among adolescents at 28 percent. 

The fulfillment of sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights is key to reducing poverty in the country. The PDP 2017-2022 contains a specific chapter on Reaching for the Demographic Dividend; this chapter emphasizes the fact that reducing fertility through increasing access for young people to reproductive health information and services is a necessary pre-condition for the demographic dividend to be realized. 

The Philippine Government is a champion of the ICPD and President Rodrigo R. Duterte is committed to ending the unmet need for family planning, reflected in the recently revamped National Program on Population and Family Planning (NPPFP) to accelerate the full implementation of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act.

“The Philippine Government remains strong in its commitment to fulfill the promise of the International Conference on Population and Development Programme of Action, to put people at the center of sustainable development and to pursue the realization of every Filipino’s sexual and reproductive rights,” said Dr. Juan Antonio A. Perez III, Under-Secretary for Population and Development and Executive Director of POPCOM. 

To finish the unfinished business of the ICPD, governments, activists and stakeholders will rally at the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 to be held on 12-14 November to sustain the gains made so far, and fulfill the promise of the ICPD agenda. Most countries, including the Philippines, need to build on the foundation of the past achievements to reach those who have been left behind and make sexual and reproductive health and rights a reality for all.

Facts and figures on the Philippines:

• Number of deaths of women from pregnancy-related causes per 100,000 live births: 121 in 1994; 114 in 2015 (SWOP, 2019)

• Modern contraceptive prevalence rate among currently-married women: 11 in 1973; 25 in 1993; 40 in 2017 (NDS, 1993; NDHS, 2017)

• Total fertility rate, or average number of births per women: 6.0 in 1973; 4.1 in 1993; 2.7 in 2017 (NDS, 1993; NDHS, 2017)

• Percent women 15-19 years old who have begun childbearing: 6.5 in 1993; 8.6 in 2017 (NDS, 1993; NDHS, 2017)

The fulfillment of sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights is key to reducing poverty in the country. Much has been achieved in the Philippines since 1969. The average number of births per woman was 6.0 in 1973. Today it is 2.7, even though the country has the highest total fertility rate in the ASEAN region. 

Poised to give us a good scare, Fox produces its first local film “Maledicto”

Fox Network Philippines’ first local film production, “Maledicto” - a horror movie showing on May 1 starring Tom Rodriguez, Jasmine Curtis-Smith, Miles Ocampo, and Inah de Belen. 

Home to the most popular series and Hollywood movies, FOX is about to delight viewers yet again with their newest must-watch

Directed by Mark Meily, “Maledicto” (which means bad words like a curse or insult) is about exorcism, and written by Palanca-winner Jonathan Guillermo. Co-produced by Cignal Entertainment, Maledicto, is a chilling tale that will surely get under your skin.

A horror film where Tom Rodriguez play the lead role of Fr. Xavi, a priest to perform an exorcism on Miles Ocampo as Agnes, a student in a Catholic school who is under demonic possession. 

Jasmine's played in ‘Maledicto’ as a nun, as Sister Barbara, who is assigned to help a young and arrogant priest, Father Xavi

Tom said that his role, is not a conventional priest since he’s also a psychologist who becomes a skeptic after his sister, Inah de Belen as Mara, died under mysterious circumstances.

Fox Senior Vice President  and General Manager Jude Turcuato shares his excitement for the upcoming movie and share the bloggers / media , why they went into film production. 

Tom Rodriguez , Jonathan Guillermo, Palanca-winner and Jude Turcuato, Fox SVP  and General Manager

"Maledicto is a really big feat for FNG, being the first ever film we ve produced locally, with an all-Filipino cast. With Maledicto under our beit, we're hoping to elevate Filipino cinema to one of the Hollywood pedigree." 

“We’ve produced docus and sports shows before, but we also want to have our own scripted content properties, like what Hong Kong and Korea are doing now with their worldwide productions." 

“Our bosses in Los Angeles made us spend a week there meeting producers and attending shoots for their shows and they want to see if could do similar shows here. For the past two years, we read about 100 scripts submitted to us before finally choosing “Maledicto,” written by Palanca-winner Jonathan Guillermo. It was the best script given to us and we felt we can have a good shot with it. This is done in cooperation with Cignal and Unitel.” 

Turcuato adds, "we have always prided ourselves ㄺ creating ongnal content that would speak to our audience on a personal level, and I feel that Maledicto will do just that, because faith and belief are things that are innate in almost everyone. More than a horror movie, it is an invitation to look inside ourselves and assess what wo truy beleve in. We hope that this film will offer a fresh perspective." 

Inah de Belen shares her experience in doing the horror film Maledicto , photo with with  Tom Rodriguez , Jonathan Guillermo, Palanca-winner and Jude Turcuato, Fox SVP  and General Manager , during the recent blogcon.

The lead actors have also expressed enthusiasm on being part of FOX's first film, saying it was an opportunity to play roles that stray from the norm of romance and loveteams. They have happily accepted the challenge, and are excited to bring the characters to life.

The movie also stars Eric Quizon, Martin Escudero, Franco Laurel, Nonie and Shamaine Buencamino, Liza Lorena, Nina Ricci Alagao and Menggie Cobarrubias.

"Maledicto,” opens nationwide on May 1, distributed by Star Cinema. 


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