The event on mid-week was exceptionally important though. This is when we had a presscon to award the Palaban 5! A project jointly undertaken by our "masa brand" 555 Tuna and our celebrity endorser, Action Star, Robin Padilla.
|Si Binoy with.....Manoy.....hahahah - our endorser, Robin Padilla and I shortly before the presscon.|
A Jaded and Desperate "Masa"
There is no such thing as a perfect government. Maybe because the present administration's focus is on eradicating corruption, somehow the benefits of whatever economic progress we're experiencing is not being felt by the lowest members of our society. In fact, the opposite is true. We hear of 4 million children now being part of the "labor force". Of growing hunger, expanding poverty and heavier reliance on overseas Filipinos to keep the economy bouyant. This is despite the rich resources we have as a Nation.
All this adds to the feeling of hopelessness and desperation among the masses. And, under prolonged exposure to this situation, values, good work ethics, perseverance are thrown out the window in exchange for the quick fix and an "every man to himself" attitude among the poor towards society and life in general.
The Palaban 5 Award- inspiring hope
However, we feel that the best opportunity for greatness of the Filipino is indeed at hand. Both by design and sheer circumstance, we have a skilled populace who is generally well educated, literate and possess good work and family values. This has been proven by the very high demand for Filipino labor all over the world. It is a matter of highlighting, promoting and even celebrating such values to create a bandwagon effect of positivism and optimism.
As such, Century Canning, led by the marketing group of 555 Tuna and on the suggestion of our endorser, Robin Padilla created the Palaban 5 Award. This is an award given to five outstanding Pinoy workeres who exhibit1) exemplary value towards their work; 2) dedication to help or delight other people; 3) excellent work attitude; 4) a strong responsibility to their families; and of course, 5) care for their health.
After a careful and extensive search, the 5 awardees were honored yesterday via a lunch and a presscon at Annabel's in QC with no less than the "Idol ng Masa", Robin Padilla leading the awarding ceremonies.
These are our Palaban 5 Winners:
First on the list is Lilia Miniano, the pioneer employee of Century Canning who rose up the ranks from a factory worker to becoming the Assistant Plant Manager. Her outstanding commitment, exemplary dedication and loyalty has made here a role model for her co-workers and all who've had an opportunity to know her. She's been at it for over 30 years and still going strong.
|From Plant Worker to Plant Manager|
For those who frequent the Cubao area, the next Palaban 5 winner is Traffic Enforcer, Margarito Reyes. He is known as the dancing traffic enforcer and is a constant source of delight and entertainment as he dances his way through his task of directing traffic. His passion, creativity, and seemingly limitless energy brings joy to motorist and despite the snarls of traffic.
|Dancing Traffic Enforcer|
Juanita Dagumas is a mother who has been widowed for 11 years. She is solely responsible for raising her nine wonderful children. This challenge never fazed Juanity as she continues to overcome daily difficulties of being a breadwinner. She provides for her family by collecting and selling recyclable materials and still works as a feeding volunteer at the Philippine Christian Foundation caring for Orphans.
|Volunteer in caring for Orphans while caring for her own brood of 9 children.|
The 4th Palaban 5 Awardee probably has the most noble cause and methods. Adrian Cobardo is a teacher who sacrifices his weekends by organizing student volunteers and himself to travel to various seaside communities and islands around the area of Zambales to bring knowledge and education to children there. The kids from far-off communities get to learn to read, write, etc as Adrian visits them using a motorized bangka as a mobile learning center aptly called "Bangkarunungan".
|Teach and Bangkarunungan Advocate, Adrian Cobardo|
|Honored to meet the proponent of the Bangkarunungan.|
They say the true test of character is when you do good even when no one else is looking. If so, the next Palaban 5 Awardee is overflowing with character and integrity. Joel Navarez is known as the honest cab driver. Many times over, passengers in his taxi have left items behind accidentally. Whether these be highly valuable items or minor personal effects, cash or belongings, Joel has always made sure that these are returned to their rightful owner. This is despite having to toil and sweat out a living driving his cab more than 12 hours a day. His honesty is both refreshing and inspiring.
|Hardworking Cabbie who has returned valuables |
left behind in his taxi everytime.
Helping Lilia, Margarito, Aling Juanita, Adrian and Joel overcome the daily challenges of their work is 555 Tuna. This is a good source of protein and tuna nutrients packed in affordable cans for the Pinoy masa. Plus, the brand comes in 14 delicious variants making it a "grand slam" in preferred brand especially among the masa.
The event was well attended by all the networks, print, radio and on line media. I guess that's the "hatak" of Robin. But they all enjoyed and some even touched by the stories and efforts of our 5 awardees. Columnist Jessica Safra even said that it was a rare and well appreciated presscon given that some recognition for "heroes" among the masa was done while we introduced our new endorser.
Annabel's restaurant in QC served as the ideal venue given the great food, warm and friendly ambiance and strategic location (near the networks). Our host was Phoemela Baranda who did so well in adding glam to our event without alienating any of our masa awardees.
|Host, Phoem and Idol, Robin|
Our Group Product Manager for 555 Tuna, Macky Lim did a good job in explaining the Award and updating the media with the latest news on 555 Tuna. Robin couldn't help notice the striking resemblance of Macky with his wife, Mariel Rodriguez.
|555 Tuna Group Product Manager and Mariel Rodriguez look-alike, Macky keeping the media updated.|
|This is Robin Padilla's spiritual adviser and close in security - "Uncle".|
Robin up close.
Robin Padilla is a very sincere, warm, respectful and down-to-earth person. Despite his superstar status, he is approachable and very practical. He engaged us in light conversation and made it a point that everyone is at ease and having fun. He is gracious and generous to the people around us, conceding to photo ops even in various posses. As we prepare for the event via a briefing from the production crew, he patiently listens to the Director and gives out very good suggestions on how to make the show better. He then asked that we all do prayers before the event starts.
Prayers were done in Islamic and Catholic versions on his own suggestion. He then wishes everyone good luck and we go to our respective "places" to get the Awarding Ceremony and Presscon underway.