How a trip to Tacloban changed Anne Curtis's priorities

IMAGE Noel Orsal

Anne Curtis: "If you have little to give, why not?"


Talking about life goals, Anne Curtis might have had a lot of items crossed off her bucket list.

Her travels around the world alone are more than enough to stir anyone's wanderlust.

On top of that, her stature has given her access to a lot of opportunities, such as becoming the celebrity advocate of UNICEF Philippines back in 2014.

Last year, she took part in her very first 21K run at the first Heroes for Children Run.


Now on to the running event's second year, Anne recalled the experience of finishing half-marathon.

“Hashtag the struggle was real especially over the flyovers, oh my god, yung pace ko bumagal.

“It was really struggle, but after noon, wala, I became more and more passionate about running.

“As I keep on saying on my social media accounts, parang every kilometer was really worth it because I knew what was I running for, who I was running for.

“So it was very emotional crossing the finish line for the very first time. That’s why I’m excited to run again for the 21K.”

Anne is organizing the Heroes for Children Run 2016 again together with RunRio.

In an exclusive one-on-one with the celebrity advocate, she shared, “A lot of meetings. I’m very hands-on, so I’m the one who really contacts the sponsors.

“A lot of planning, a lot of training din, pero masaya siya.”

She will train three times a week, every Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.

“Tuesday easy run, Thursdays sprints, and Sunday long runs.”

MARATHON WITH A PURPOSE. Early in March 2015, Anne went Tacloban City with UNICEF Philippines to meet the mothers and the children affected by Typhoon Yolanda.

It was during this trip that Anne felt the urgency to raise more funds.

She told PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), “You know it’s such a humbling—very, very humbling experience na parang, it changes your outlook in life.

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“It changes your priorities.

"It makes me realize na, Yes, you know, it’s fun, life is fun, you can enjoy everything that you have, but what’s it to donate? What’s it to make time?'

"I’m not telling people na, 'It’s okay, you have to go donate every single time.'

"Pero if you have little to give, why not?”

Her personal encounters with the less fortunate have left a strong impact and instilled in Anne the strong desire to keep on helping.

“Of course when we were there, we were focusing on helping out those who were affected by Typhoon Yolanda.

“You visit kids, you see the kids, and you see the provinces, and you see, wow, there is a lot of work to be done.

“Education, the mothers, the whole process from being pregnant until the second year, parang it’s so important pala.”

“Mas lalong ‘we have to raise funds somehow, oh, fun run, let’s do it!’ So ito na yun."


In photo: (L-R) Coach Rio of Run Rio, UNICEF Country Representative Lotta Sylwander, and UNICEF celebrity advocate Anne Curtis

Among the objectives of Heroes for Children 2016 is to raise funds for UNICEF’s First 1,000 Days program.

This focuses on educating mothers, especially pregnant women, on the importance of the first 1,000 days of a child.

Malnutrition can be prevented provided that the mother and child receive proper care and nutrition from the onset of pregnancy to the second year of the baby.

Anne mentioned a mother’s sad story in Tacloban.

“[She] lost her child and I was just like,” she paused as she remembered the thought, and continued, “that’s when you realize as early as the pregnancy, you have to educate these women on how to have the proper nutrition and have that available in public hospital.”

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Heroes for Children Run 2016 will be on September 4, 2016 at the SM Mall of Asia Grounds.

Register at www.runrio.com/HeroesforChildren until August 19 or register at the following Chris Sports outlets: SM Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, SM City North EDSA, SM City BF Homes, Glorietta, Market! Market!, Robinsons Place Manila, and UP Town Center.

In-store registration runs until August 28.

You may also donate funds on Anne’s personal SimplyGiving fundraising page.

The event coincides withe the 70th year of UNICEF.


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