VP pushes success stories vs negativity
By Juan Escandor Jr. NAGA CITY---Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo pushes for the promotion of success stories of ordinary people to counter the effects of negativity hounding the social media. Robredo, during the signing of contract between the story subjects and her office last weekend, formally launched the project Istorya ng Pag-asa to respond to the growing culture of negativity and so-called “alternative truth,” especially in the social media. “Most of us are in the Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and it is very common now to see angry posts and we are now confused which is true and false,” she said. She said the project Istorya ng Pag-asa (Story of Hope) will be an attempt to change the conversation by nurturing the culture of positive outlook with reference to the stories of people that brings hope and inspiration. Robredo said the promotion of stories of success of ordinary people gives inspiration because they reflect similar struggles that many ordinary people are going through which they have overcome. She said the project also aims to inspire people who are still wanting even though they have already enough to live with. “We want to share to these people so that when they read stories like the ones we will promote they will realize they have already enough but still they want more,” Robredo said. She said the project Istorya ng Pag-asa has been launched in Cebu, Baguio, Cagayan de Oro, Quezon City, Dumaguete and here in Naga City. Robredo said she targets to launch the project in all the major cities in the country. Among those who signed as subject of the stories of hope include Naga City Councilor Salvador Del Castillo who rose from the ranks to become a certified accountant and lawyer from an ordinary janitor of the local government unit. Another one is Judith Armea Garchitorena who started as peddler and succeeded to become a bigtime businesswoman. Supt. Errol Garchitorena Jr., the present police chief of Pili town, is also included in the project because of his struggle when he became a stow-away kid to become a successful police officer. Sacrificing a position in exchange of a job in the remote barangays teaching adults in the alternative learning system, Windel Alvarez, a native of Caramoan town, shares his story for the project. Rosario SP Estanislao was a street cleaner of the local government unit of Naga City who struggled to finish high school and then college at the age of 54. Gilda E. Orlina is an inspiration after she was able to send all her children to college to become professionals by washing clothes. Robredo said the stories of these proud Bicolanos will be compiled into a coffee book for the promotion of positive values amidst growing apathy and negativity in the present society.