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IN PHOTOS: Meet the 7th JFVA Awardees who have made a difference in our country today

In the most trying times, it’s often difficult for many of us to find hope. But just because the situation seems bleak, that doesn’t mean it’s hopeless. In fact, hope and love can be found in some of life’s smallest moments — be it a mother’s comforting words or in a stranger’s selfless gesture.

In our country, this sense of hope and good will is present in all of us. Though it may sometimes get overlooked and neglected, it’s still there. And last October 11, we got a glimpse of the Filipinos’ selfless nature when Jollibee awarded several families with the Jollibee Family Values Award (JFVA) during the 7th Gabi ng Parangal para sa Pamilyang Pilipino, at Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria, Pasig City.

The awardees pose with Jollibee at the 7th Family Values Awards.Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net

Here are the families whose efforts have made a difference in the Filipino community:


The Dickson Family

As a family of medical and dental physicians, the Dickson family uses their training and profession to help individuals in the far-flung regions of Abra get both the medical and the dental attention they need.

The Dickson Family. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net

The family composed of Ramon Dickson, 60; Auditha Dickson, 56; Ramarie Dickson, 29; and Ramon Henry Dickson, 25, each contribute a part in making a difference in the lives of the families in Abra. Their selfless nature proves that with love, anything can be possible. As Ramon Henry Dickson says, “Sa Jollibee, bida ang saya. Pero mas bida pa ang nagpapasaya.”


The Felix Family

Similarly, the Felix family also uses their expertise in the field of medicine to help citizens of Pasay attain clearer vision. Because of this, they started 20/20 Vision — the initiative to provide free eye check-ups for the underprivileged and to generate a total of 2,020 prescription glasses for those in need.

The Felix Family. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net

20/20 Vision is headed by family matriarch Agnes Joanna Felix and the eldest daughter Paula Eunice Felix. These ladies both execute the eye examinations; while family patriarch, Simeon Felix Jr. and daughter, Hannah Kathleen Felix ensure the smooth implementation of the project.

Through their efforts, many individuals have reaped the benefits of having better eyesight and improved health care services in the country.


The Matti Family

A few years back, the Matti family received a sizable piece of farmland at the foothills of Sierra Madre. But instead of using the land for personal gain, both James Patrick Matti and Mylene Matti, decided to extend their blessings to the nearby communities in San Miguel, Bulacan. So in 2008, they established the Green Earth Heritage Foundation — a movement dedicated to help replenish the mountains’ denuded forests and to empower farmers by teaching them organic farming and sustainable practices.

Through their efforts, the Matti couple have instilled a greater awareness and appreciation for the environment within the community.

The Matti Family. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net

Additionally, James and Mylene Matti have helped a number of beneficiaries including Romnick Blanco — a farmer’s child who the couple took under their care as legal guardians. Today, Blanco continues to help in his guardians’ advocacy and will be taking in a scholarship to study in Harvard University.

These altogether make them worthy of the JFVA Award and the Special Citation for the Environment.


The Macalintal Family

As public school teachers, Alvin and Rina Macalintal both saw the Mangyan students’ desire to learn. Because of this, they established the Balay-Lakot Project back in 2008.

The Balay-Lakot Project offers free housing, mentoring and reading materials to Mangyan children. This in effect, allows the children to get their necessary learning materials without having to travel far.

The Macalintal Family. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net

Through the Macalintal family’s efforts, the children of Oriental Mindoro can now continue their quest for education and make better futures for themselves.


The Mallari Family

To bring out a child’s full potential, the Mallari family created Silid Aralan Inc. (SAI) — a foundation that creates learning hubs to help the underprivileged youth develop the skills and confidence to perform well in school.

Since 2007, the Mallari family has opened learning hubs in Rizal, San Mateo, Marikina, Baguio and Cagayan De Oro. As a father himself, Arcie Mallari plans to continue this advocacy and help produce more graduates of tomorrow.


The Castro Family

After one visit to Paniqui, Tarlac, the Castro family made it their initiative to help further the efforts of education in the country. It was then that they founded the Children’s Health-Education Fund Foundation, an organization dedicated to aiding Filipino learners nationwide to attain their goals through proper education.

Since the creation of the organization, the Castro family — composed of Juvenal, Erlin and Jay Castro — have gathered textbooks, school materials and other essentials from various donors in their area in San Jose, California and institutionalized the help they received from year-round collection drives. More than that, they willingly shouldered the cost of shipping the items from the United States of America back to the Philippines.

Because of their dedication and efforts, Filipino students of all ages are now able to get better education.


The 7th Jollibee Family Values Awards also recognized certain families for special citation. Recipients of the Special Citation for Education (co-presented with National Book Store) are Mr. Rey Dennis and Mrs. Janice Caballero and family of Negros Oriental, for bringing learning closer to the youth through the Gaba-An Youth Lead Foundation. Recognized for their feeding program for underprivileged children, the Special Citation for Children (co-presented with Children’s Hour and AIESEC) was given to Mr. Arnel and Mrs. Alma Borela and family of General Santos City. Mr. Leopoldo and Mrs. Fe Acula and family of Taguig City received the Special Citation for PWDs for their Future Vision Sighted, Inc., which provides care for the visually-impaired members of the community.

The winning families each received a P300,000 cash prize, a brass trophy by sculptor Michael Cacnio, and P10,000 worth of Jollibee gift certificates. The special citation recipients were each given P50,000 in cash, a plaque, and P3,000 worth of Jollibee gift certificates.  

On top of the awarding ceremony, Jollibee enlisted artists like Jed Madela, Jona Soquite and Sarah Geronimo to perform during the event. These artists provided masterclass performances that left guests and awardees in awe.

Jed Madela thrills the crowd with the iconic song from The Sound of Music. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net
Jona Soquite and Sarah Geronimo go onstage for a killer duet. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net
Sarah Geronimo performs Jollibee’s theme song. Photo taken by Francesca Militar/INQUIRER.net

Through the 7th Family Values Awards, Jollibee hopes to recognize the amazing lengths these families have gone through to help the Filipino community. As Jollibee Philippines President JJ Allano says, “they (awardees) serve as inspiration of how powerful Filipino family values can be in nurturing and contributing to building a better nation.”


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