July 23, 2015

Inspiring Life Changers Recognized

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  • Pharmaton names “Oras na Para sa Alpabasa” as winner of PHP1Million grant for Life Changers’ Challenge

    The lives of three social entrepreneurs and the children they were able to reach through their program were changed irrevocably last Tuesday when Pharmaton and its distinguished panel of judges named “Oras na Para sa Alpabasa” as the winner of the Life Changers’ Challenge: Success in Numbers program.

    Named as the ultimate life changers, teachers Tisha Gonzales-Cruz, Noelle Pabiton and Sholeh Villoria were awarded with one million pesos (PHP1,000,000) as prize grant that will allow the trio to reach out to more Filipino kids badly in need of support in learning to read.

    Alpabasa bested eight other groups, all of which presented compelling, inspiring and truly commendable advocacies and entrepreneurships with the primary purpose to help and lift the lives of many Filipinos.


    “The ladies of “Oras na Para sa Alpabasa” were all smiles after being named as the ultimate life changers during Tuesday night’s awarding ceremonies for Pharmaton’s “Life Changers Challenge: Success in Numbers” campaign at the Century City Mall Event Space. The group endeavors to nurture their passion and impact the lives of more Filipinos by equipping teachers, schools, and classrooms to teach reading to kindergarten and elementary school children. With the kids’ best interest at heart, Alpabasa eyes to change lives, one syllable at a time. Seen in the photo together with the winners are (L-R): Pharmaton Life Changers Chef Rob Pengson and Reese Fernandez; BIPHI’s Director of Consumer Health Care, Mr. Ricky Rivera; Boehringer Ingelheim Head of Finance, Mr. Andreas Meneghetti (6th from left); BIPHI Head of Medical, Dr. Editha I. Arceo Dalisay (4th from left); Pharmaton Senior Brand Manager Bernice Jalgalado; Boehringer Ingelheim Group Manager, Mely Guerrero; and Futkal founder and Pharmaton Life Changer Peter Amores.”

    A Worthy Cause

    Alpabasa started three years ago when teacher Tisha decided to act on her dream to provide easy to understand materials for her students. All patiently crafted by hand, these educational materials were initially written in English and employed the use of games, songs, sounds and movements to usher students into reading. Overwhelmed by the number of Alpabasa sets she had to make, she chanced upon two more dedicated educators teacher Noelle and teacher Sholleh. It was also around this time when Alpabasa became a tool for reading in Pilipino after the three educators saw that there’s a greater need for students to learn to read in the local language.


    CHANGING LIVES, ONE SYLLABLE AT A TIME. “Regardless of age, when you teach someone to read, you really change their lives and ignite their passion to succeed,” says Noelle Pabiton of “Oras na Para sa Alpabasa.” On Tuesday, Pabiton and her colleagues took home the grand prize of being named the ultimate life changers of Pharmaton’s “Life Changers Challenge: Success in Numbers” competition, an online, video-driven nationwide search for inspiring Filipinos who carry life-changing ideas that can positively impact the lives of other Filipinos. With their much celebrated victory, “Oras na Para sa Alpabasa” can soon nurture their passion and impact the lives of more Filipinos further by expanding their endeavors to equip teachers, schools, and classrooms nationwide to teach reading to kindergarten and elementary school children.

    All 1,000 Alpabasa learning sets are shared in public schools and used by volunteer teachers in teaching young students. The learning kits were tested in six public schools, with 106 non-reading students while supervised by 12 volunteer teachers. By day 18, all 106 students were already able to finish reading a book – from non-readers to happy story-tellers.

    “Alpabasa sets are effective learning tools by developing children’s brains – by breaking down reading to sounds, actions and visual integration,” teacher Tisha said.

    All worthy and inspiring competitors

    “Filipino life changers have truly proven how creative and how passionate they are in sustaining energy and acting on their desire to make a significant change to the lives of the people around them,” says Pharmaton Senior Brand Manager Bernice Jalgado. “We are very grateful to all those who took part in the Life Changers’ Challenge, and we are really honored to provide the necessary charge for life changers to fulfill their visions and go beyond themselves.”


    INSPIRING LIFE CHANGERS. By energizing the Filipinos’ inner resolve to succeed and leave a lasting imprint to the lives of the world surrounding them, Pharmaton empowers life changers to stand out and make a difference in the lives of people around them. Shown in this photo during Tuesday night’s awarding ceremonies at the Century City Mall Event Space are the representatives from each of the nine finalists of Pharmaton’s “Life Changers Challenge: Success in Numbers,” an online, video-driven competition in search of inspiring Filipinos that carry life-changing ideas. (L-R) Mark McMahon of Island Kid; Nikki Vergara of Teaching K-12 Science; Billy Santos of Three Mush-keteers; Venerando Palejaro of Red Light District; Meryl Grace Agudelo of Passion Wearthy; Maiki Oreta of Kiddo-Preneur; Biboy Castanares of Prepper Plus; Monnick Cruz of Silent Beads; and Noelle Pabiton, one of the members of the winning group, “Oras na Para sa Alpabasa.”

    Rounding off the top 9 are: Teaching K-12 Science using Indigenous materials, another group of educators focusing on science; Kiddo+Preneur, a group advocating to get kids interested in business and entrepreneurship; Island Kid, a program aimed at helping make a brighter future for kids through soccer; Red Light District, which aims to equip Philippine communities to better respond in times of calamities and disasters; The Mush-Keeters, social entrepreneurs who are seeking to build the foundation of a progressive mushroom industry in the Philippines; the Passion Wearthy Project, a social enterprise providing livelihood to people with disabilities; Silent Beads, social enterprise that creates beads and accessories using repurposed materials and Prepper Plus, which aims to promote disaster readiness in the consciousness of every Filipino.  

    Pharmaton’s Life Changers’ Challenge: Success in Numbers was conceptualized with the aim of finding passionate Filipinos wanting to create positive change and help them sustain their energy for others and not just for themselves. Following the win of Alpabasa, their project and progress will be monitored by Pharmaton and documented as a “Life Changer’s Journey.”

    Article by Melanie Suzon

    Photos from GeiserMaclang

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