Each year, celebrity mom Tintin Bersola-Babao spends the weeks leading up to Christmas preparing for her charity bazaar—the Grand International Importers and Exporters Christmas Bazaar.
"[It is] a celebrity and charity bazaar that I organize yearly with my Mommy Ching. This will be our sixth year," she says in an e-mail sent to PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) this week.
Tintin tells how she and her mom got started with organizing bazaars.
"Unknown to many, my mom has been a 'mompreneur'—a bazaarista since I was in high school.
"She was a biyahera, traveling to Hong Kong and Bangkok to import clothes, shoes, and accessories. We sold them in our boutiques in Virra Mall and Shoppesville in Greenhills.
"It was my mom who taught me my entrepreneurial skills—how to deal with and sales talk customers, and how to be patient with all kinds of clients.
"I remember having customers who would ask me to bring down all the clothes from the display window, fit them all, but end up not buying.
"Still, I smiled and kept my cool. My mom reminded me: 'Smile to your customers all the time, even if they're giving you a headache, even if they're demanding and makulit, hehe.'
"It was my mom who taught me the value of hard-earned money early on and this is why I grew up to be a wise spender."
From humble merchants, Tintin and Mommy Ching have evolved to become bazaar organizers.
The Good Morning Club host says, "Today, I'm making my mom's senior years fruitful, productive, and unpredictable by helping her organize bazaars.
"It's tough, stressful, and challenging, but we survive every year.
"It feels good when you are on a mission. We are the ultimate mother and daughter tandem!"
Their mission is to help less fortunate kids through the World Vision organization, a non-profit charity group that Tintin proudly supports.
Other beneficiaries of the bazaar are the children from the Shepherd of the Hills orphanage, and a sick child named Judymae from Gawad Kalinga Amparo Novaliches.
To ultimately raise huge amounts for these kids, Tintin has sought the help of her celebrity friends and asked them to donate some of their pre-loved items and put them on sale.
The partial list of celebrity donors include Iza Calzado, Bea Alonzo, Toni Gonzaga, Aga Muhlach, and Charlene Gonzales.
Other stars like Ruffa Gutierrez, Amy Perez, Alex Gonzaga, IC Mendoza, Angeline Quinto, Shalani Soledad-Romulo, and Xyriel Manabat will be selling some of their clothes and personal items.
Dawn Zulueta will put one of her precious Prada bags on sale, while Cheryl Cosim and Chiqui Roa-Puno will be passing on their Coach and DKNY bags respectively to generous buyers.
Sharon Cuneta will also sell some of her beaded bags created by her makeup artist/fashion designer friend Fanny Serrano, and TV host Grace Lee will be selling some of her Korean branded stuff.
International singer Charice will be selling an autographed black shirt, while Pokwang will put a black gown she previously worn to the Star Magic Ball on sale.
Other clothing items from Boy Abunda, Jericho Rosales, Paolo Bediones, and Edu Manzano will also be available at the bazaar.
Also, couple Ryan Agoncillo and Judy Ann Santos will be selling their his-and-hers motor bike helmets.
Tintin says, "When you shop in my bazaar, you are also going to help the many merchants.
"You also help Shepherd of the Hills orphanage when you buy the cookies and paintings made by the orphans.
"Caritas Manila will sell handmade crafts made by cooperatives.
"Women's Correctional will sell magazine racks, placemats and coasters, Christmas trinkets, beaded bags, and knitwear—all made by the women of the correctional [facility] in Mandaluyong.
"The Kababaihan ng Gawad Kalinga Art 2 Heart Village will also sell beautiful cutlery adorned with beads, and bags made of recycled plastic bags—a must buy.
"The Angono Cooperative will also be there to sell tote bags made of old tarpaulin and worn-out jeans.
"I also gave a booth to World Vision. They will sell stuff donated by their celebrity ambassadors.
"I gave these booths to these charitable institutions gratis et amore, so they can raise funds without the rental cost."
Celebrity performers will also grace the bazaar to provide entertainment to customers.
Sam Concepcion will be dropping by on opening day, November 9, to perform for World Vision.
On November 10, Giselle Sanchez, Pinoy Dream Academy 2's Laarni Lozada, and Talentadong Pinoy grand finalist Wanlu will bring fun and music to the bazaar.
And on the final day, November 11, Nikki Valdez is set to perform for the crowd of shoppers.
Tintin says there will be more confirmed celebrity guests as the bazaar's opening day approaches.
The Grand International Importers and Exporters Christmas Bazaar will be held on November 9-11, 2012 at the World Trade Center's Hall A from 11 AM to 8 PM.
Free admission will be given to students, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities bearing valid IDs.
For more information and inquiries, please call (02) 931-0852.