MANILA, Philippines - It was at the Ayala Museum where nine young achievers dubbed the Filipino Young Global Shapers of the World Economic Forum were introduced to the media. World Economic Forum (WEF) is an independent international organization based in Geneva, Switzerland. It's committed to improve the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.
"The goal of the WEF's newest project is to build a global community of the most outstanding young people, ages 20 to 30 years old." said broadcaster Karen Davila, who as a WEF Young Global Leader for 2010, had been task to be the founding curator of the Global Shapers Community in Manila.
Driven by passion and inspiration, the list of outstanding leaders includes an environmentalist, social entrepreneur, mayor, TV host, program manager and philanthropist.
Anna Rosario Oposa, 23, is a co-founder of Save the Philippine Seas movement to protect the world's richest marine life. She also co-founded the Isko Cleans UP, a waste management program based in UP Diliman.
With her passion to give back, Eleanor "Lyn" Pinugo founded Mano Amiga Academy Inc., a non-profit school that provides underprivileged Filipino children access to high quality education, and all other support they need to have a better life. After two years of raising funds for the students' scholarships through private donations and corporate partnerships, Lyn decided to establish a social enterprise that would generate a steady income for her school and at the same time provide employment opportunities for the mothers of the students.
Maria Carmela Alvarez, 24, is currently the youngest female mayor in the country. She is a graduate of International Business, Public Law and Environmental Technology from Babson College in Boston, MA. As Mayor of San Vicente in Palawan, she is working towards building a sustainable town with social initiatives and environmentally sound developments.
Probably one of the youngest social entrepreneurs in the country, Ponce Ernest Samaniego, at age 21 is the co-founder and CEO of Outliers, a social enterprise that serves as an outsourced business expertise for non-government and non-profit organizations.
The "fire starter and chief story teller" as he likes to refer himself, Jay Jaboneta started the movement called the Philippine Funds for Little Kids that helps communities where children swim to school. He was the first to serve as media head of the Presidential Communications Office under President Benigno Aquino III. Currently, he sits at the boards of Kabayanihan Foundation and Team Pinoy Inc.
A graduate of Medicine at the University of the Philippines, Dr. Bryan Albert Lim is a practicing general physician in San Pablo Laguna. He is also a program consultant of the Asian Institute of Management Zuellig Center for Asian Business Transformation, a Research Associate of the UP Universal Health Care Study Group and the proponent of the Quisumbing-Escandor Film Festival for Health.
Currently pursuing her passion to becoming a lawyer, Mildred Ople is taking up Law while she continues her advocacy on countryside development through the adoption of innovative agricultural technology with profitable business concepts and ideas.
Mildred is the founding member of the Hagonoy Young Leaders Program and has worked with the Ayala Foundation on youth leadership and development projects.
A junior in college taking up Urban Studies, Alexandra Madrigal Eduque is committed to various humanitarian projects. At age 21, she is the founder and chairperson of the Habitat for Humanity Philippines Youth Council and stands as one of the institutional ambassadors.
She is currently formulating on a legacy program in the organization to recognize members of the youth sector who foster promising leadership qualities and provide them opportunities to excel.
The most popular among the achievers and yet the most humbled for being in the list is TV host Bianca Gonzalez. Bianca currently hosts five television programs. She was recently appointed as Special Advocate for Children for UNICEF Philippines.
Three of the nine Young Global Shapers were invited to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Anna Oposa, Lyn Pinugo and Carmela Alvarez will be flying to Davos with their curator and mentor Karen Davila later this month.