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Stars to help make children’s future brighter through the
World Vision Celebrities for Children: The Race for Hope!

As part of its commitment to uplift the lives of poor children, World Vision launched its ‘Celebrities for Children: The Race for Hope’ campaign on Tuesday, April 23 at Annabel’s Restaurant in Quezon City.

The campaign aims to find sponsors for at least 1,000 poor children in the country through the help of World Vision celebrity child sponsors.

The participating World Vision celebrities will prove that they are more than just pretty faces – they have the heart to help. The celebrity-challengers will “race” to get 1,000 children sponsored in three months.

TV host Christine Bersola-Babao, entrepreneur Cristalle Belo Henares, movie and TV actress Anne Curtis and beauty queen Miriam Quiambao are the celebrities who responded to the call and accepted the challenge.

“When I heard about this [challenge], I said ‘yes’ right away. I’ve been a longtime ambassador for World Vision and I believe in that sponsorship can really uplift the lives of poor children, being a child sponsor myself,” said Quiambao. She started sponsoring a child after winning first runner up in the 1999 Miss Universe beauty pageant. Now, she is a proud sponsor of 10 children, three of whom have already graduated.

For TV host Tintin Babao, sponsorship is a family affair. The Babaos sponsor four children – one for each member of their family. “We teach our kids the value of sharing our blessings. We even turn their birthdays into charity events,” she shared.

Celebrity challengers Anne Curtis and Cristalle Belo Henares were not able to attend the presscon but a video message was played on their behalf.

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As soon as the campaign kicked off last April 15, the challengers have each started to refer their family, friends and fans to become sponsors. Quiambao, now also working as a corporate motivational speaker revealed that she has already signed up 23 new sponsors!

Meanwhile, Babao shares her “strategy” on how she recruits sponsors, “I actually keep some brochures in my bag. Whenever I bump into my friends at the malls, I pull out a folder and explain sponsorship to them.”

“As a mom, I also tell people that one of the best gifts they could give their moms and wives for mothers’ day is to sponsor a child,” she added.

For her part, Henares believes that whoever wins the challenge, children are the ultimate victors. “I know that we’ll all try to win, but in the end it is the children and the communities that will benefit,” she said on video. Henares, a known entrepreneur-philanthropist, said it has been her dream to help send kids to school. Her campaign slogan is “300 at 30”, signifying her mission to find sponsors for 300 kids now that is turning 30.

Meanwhile, actress and TV host Anne Curtis is not only a child sponsor, she also lends her time and talent in support of many of World Vision’s campaign and events. She is the face of this year’s ‘World Vision Run’, a fund-raising event that also promotes child sponsorship and last year’s ‘Famine’, which advocates against hunger and poverty.

“These children have dreams, and I want to be part of making those dreams a reality,” said Curtis.

World Vision Associate Director for Public Engagement Jun Godornes shared, “Through this project, World Vision celebrities will have the opportunity to experience deeper and meaningful engagements, making them ambassadors for children and fundraisers-in-action.”

For more information about World Vision Celebrities for Children, you may visit their website at http://worldvision.org.ph/campaigns/celebrity-for-children/index.html

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World Vision in the Philippines, which started with orphanage ministries in 1957 initially helping 500 homeless children, now assists about 100,000 children in 49 Area Development Programs (ADPs) through its child-focused and community-driven programs. With strong partnership from various agencies and government institutions, World Vision in the Philippines reach out to different areas in the country addressing not only the most basic needs of children but also focusing on children’s well-being i.e. education, good health, protection of their rights and love for God and others.

It also implements sectoral projects such as the reduction of tuberculosis through mobilization of community volunteers (Global Fund-assisted), reduction of child labor incidence in the sugar plantations across the country (USDol-funded), lowering of maternal and child deaths in 6 poor provinces with high malnutrition rates (Child Health Now), various initiatives to improve quality of education among primary student (TAP/corporate- engagements), community-based savings program, livelihood and development programs to enable families and communities to be self-sustaining, localization of child protection advocacies and the promotion of community resilience through integration of disaster risk reduction and management (DRR) in development programming.

For more information you may log onto http://www.worldvision.org.ph or call hotline (02) 372-7777.

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