It’s a fitting time to recognize a bevy of empowered women as we usher in the International Women’s Month this March.
On February 27, Downy Premium Parfum organized #NeverFade, an appreciation night held at Manila House Private Club in Bonifacio Global City.
This year’s awardees have showcased their enduring passion, making a difference in the lives of Pinays. They have made sure that their voices will be heard, and the impact of their chosen advocacies will never fade.
PIA WURTZBACH ON HIV AND AIDS AWARENESS
Leading the list is Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach, a known advocate for sexual and reproductive health.
In an interview after the program, Pia expressed how grateful she is for the award and promised to continue raising awareness for HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) and AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome).
The 30-year-old UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador said, “My biggest goal is that nobody has to suffer from HIV and AIDS anymore, na mawala na rin yung takot ng mga tao dun sa mga tao who are living with HIV at dun sa mga apektado na pamilya at kaibigan nila.”
Pia also hopes that more people will get themselves tested.
“Dun sa mga tao na malalaman nila na meron silang HIV, sana mawala yung takot nilang magpagamot, mawala yung takot nila na baka hindi na sila tanggapin ng mga kaibigan at pamilya nila,” she said.
“Sana alam nila at maniwala sila na kapag nagpagamot sila, agad-agad, kaya nilang mabuhay nang normal at matutupad pa nila ang mga pangarap nila. Sayang na sayang ang buhay kung dahil lang sa takot, yun ang magiging dahilan.”
Pia also remains committed to her advocacy of ending the stigma on people living with HIV/AIDS, saying, “Sa mga friends and family, sana mas maging understanding tayo at tanggapin natin at intindihin natin ang isa’t isa."
“I-educate natin ang mga sarili natin na hindi naman ito isang death sentence, at hindi ibig sabihin na kapag niyakap mo yung tao ay mahahawa kayo. Unfortunately, marami pa rin talagang stigma around it,” she added.
BIANCA GONZALEZ-INTAL ON MATERNAL HEALTH
Celebrity mom Bianca Gonzalez-Intal was also recognized for using her influence to promote maternal health. During her acceptance speech, she dedicated her award to government workers, non-government organizations, and medical experts who work on the front lines.
In an interview after the program, Bianca reminded everyone that motherhood is different for every mom.
The 36-year-old mom of two said, “Just like every child is different, every mom is different. Others can say whatever they want about your choices or your style, but wala, e, kanya-kanya talaga tayo, e. We will do what we feel is best for our children, anumang shape or form.”
Bianca continued, “So don’t compare yourself to the point that you’ll feel bad about your parenting choices. Just do you 'cause every mom is different.”
IZA CALZADO ON EMPOWERING WOMEN
Downy Premium Parfum also paid tribute to Iza Calzado for being a longtime advocate for women empowerment. The 37-year-old award-winning actress promotes self-love, body positivity, and gender equality.
She said, “I’m deeply honored and humbled by the recognition, but at the same time, there’s a part of me na feels like I haven’t done enough in this space for me to be recognized. It serves as an inspiration for me to continue my work and the work that we do for She Talks Asia.”
Iza is the co-founder and PR director of She Talks Asia, an organization that helps maintain and improve women’s physical, emotional, and mental well-being.
To the ladies who are doubting themselves, Iza gave this piece of advice: “You are enough, we are capable to do things we want to do, and achieve the things we want to achieve. We are worthy. That’s it, e. When you start respecting yourself and loving yourself in that matter, amazing things will happen.”
JASMINE CURTIS-SMITH ON YOUTH EMPOWERMENT
Joining them is Kapuso actress Jasmine Curtis-Smith, who was chosen as a leader in equal social and economic development for her participation in charity programs that inspire the youth to reach their full potential. She is also a supporter of sustainable tourism and renewable energy.
In her #NeverFade message, Jasmine said, “I promise to consistently use my capabilities, my resources, whatever skills I have in my pocket to keep on voicing out for the children, for the future of our nation, and for everyone to have an easier access to all the skills that they need to be equipped for a better future, and to have, also, equal opportunities and employment in the future.”
KARA DAVID ON EDUCATION
Award-winning broadcast journalist Kara David was also recognized by Downy Premium Parfum for her education-related advocacies.
Kara is the founder of Project Malasakit, a scholarship foundation that bridges the gap between Filipinos who want to send help and the underprivileged Filipino children.
She accepted the recognition with a heartwarming speech, saying, “Naniniwala ako na hindi mo kailangan maging pulitiko o maging milyonaryo para makapaghatid ng pagbabago.
“Marami sa mga naipatayo naming day-care centers at eskuwelahan ay bunga ng pag-aambagan ng iba’t ibang karaniwang Pilipino. Hindi mayayaman, pero mayayaman sa puso. Naniniwala ako na sa PIlipinas, gaano man tayo kahirap sa salapi, napakayaman natin sa malasakit.”
JOY WONG AND KRISTINE YUZON-CHAVES
Completing this year’s list are cancer survivor-athlete-philanthropist Joy Wong, named woman of resilience, and Philippine Commission on Women Executive Director Atty. Kristine Yuzon-Chaves, the champion for gender equality.
This group of formidable women leaders has exhibited the Filipina’s resilient spirit that is not afraid to sweat it out in order to make a lasting change in society. They have become incredible role models to everyone, most especially to other women and girls. Watch this:
Inspired by these women's timeless passion to create a lasting legacy, Downy created Downy Premium Parfum, a long-lasting fabric fragrance that stays even when sweating. With the help of Downy Premium Parfum, every Filipina can pursue her passion without fear and make a difference that will #NeverFade.
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