Superhero series: GANG BADOY and CARISSE ESCUETA

From time to time, I’ll be featuring some people who I think are pretty awesome. I’m calling it the SUPERHERO SERIES!

Do you know how valuable one little step can be?

I look at my 9-month nephew who fearlessly attempts to take a step every time we prop him up. I know without a doubt that one day, during one of his fearless attempts, he’ll finally find himself walking.

Oh, what one little step can do.

GANG BADOY and ROCK ED PHILIPPINES

One little step turned Gang Badoy’s vision into something bigger, that which is now known today as ROCK ED PHILIPPINES. I am not entirely sure how Gang started Rock Ed, but at present, it is one of the most prolific and most talked-about non-government and non-profit organizations in the country. To find out more about Rock Ed Philippines, go to http://www.rockedphilippines.org.

Gang is one of the most passionate and most energetic women I know. I had the pleasure of working closely with her and Rock Ed in 2006 to 2007 when we launched ROCKERPARK, a campaign to collect brand new, used, or previously owned sports equipment for public schools under the RockEd P.E. Project (by the way, Rockerpark returns after a 2 year hiatus tomorrow/Saturday/Feb28!). Gang is always on the go! She has tons of great ideas, she has the drive to see them through, and in addition to all that, she knows how to mobilize young people and she uses one of the most effective tools out there: music.

Being around Gang is like being around a hurricane—but I mean that in the best way possible! :-) She moves, and she moves fast! I really admire that, because I am person who tends to be very cautious, but Gang is a classic example of how taking steps–no matter how small they are–will really make a difference in society.

CARISSE ESCUETA and RepubLIKHA

A few years ago, my friend Carisse had a vision. A former pre-school teacher, Carisse was perpetually frustrated with what kids were learning from the media. She would see kids sing the songs they heard from noontime shows–mostly novelty songs that we all know have little to no substance.

Having grown up around musicians, Carisse knew that Filipino musicians were very well capable of coming up with good, original children’s music that can entertain AND educate, given the right motivation and proper guidelines.  Last year, after finishing an events course in the US, she came back home and started taking steps in faith to see this God-given vision become a reality. By that time, there were so many people who were eager to help her, so she just brought us all together, and today, we have RepubLIKHA, a non-government and non-profit organization committed to empowering the next generation through music. Watch this:

I’m so excited for our first project! Later this year, we’re targeting the release of a full-length children’s music album that we’re calling JOOMA JAM! The album (which will come with a Parent and Teacher Manual) will feature original English AND Filipino music from over 20 of the Philippines’ most popular and critically-acclaimed artists and bands who have signed up to support this vision. To find out more about RepubLIKHA and JOOMA JAM!, log on to http://www.republikha.org.

I just want to honor these two wonderful women today. They both bravely believed and they both took that ONE STEP, and I really admire them for that. And because of what they did, a LOT of people are being blessed. :)

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