Pia Wurtzbach isn’t only a beauty—she also has the smarts and more importantly, the heart. She had the heart to try harder each time she failed for a shot at the Miss Universe crown. She has the heart to look back when she finally claimed victory. She has the heart to recognize pressing issues that affect the lives of Filipino people every single day.
Pia has a heart for charity that is as clear as day. This was evident when she walked the talk and met with Filipino soldiers and their families at the AFP Medical Hospital in Quezon City. And here’s what we think people can learn from her and the causes she stands for.
Be responsible for your actions online. Shortly after winning Miss Universe and the controversies that came with it, Pia has repeatedly called on her avid supporters to stop the hate, otherwise known in this digital age as cyberbullying. She asked netizens to stop bashing Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez-Arévalo for initially feeling being robbed off the crown; she asked netizens to stop bashing Miss Australia Monika Radulovic for issuing a statement about the top three contestants being too focused on the pageant. She simply just asked everyone to stop the cyberbullying.
Engage in protected sex. It started with her eloquent answer during the Miss Universe pageant’s Q&A portion. With her shedding light on this alarming issue, and continuous dialogue between non-profit groups and advocates aiming to raise further awareness, more people can finally be informed to engage in protected sex, among other safety precautions. At the V.Luna Hospital-AFP Medical Center, she listened to the stories of young Filipinos living with HIV and youth HIV advocates (in the banner photo, she's captured in the middle of asking the advocates and the UNICEF Philippines group, whom she was with, what else can be done to help the cause). Niccolo Cosme of The Red Whistle also shares, “Pia spoke to young HIV awareness advocates during her charity day. After hearing the different stories, she asks ‘Anong pwede nating gawin?’. She pledged to continue the dialogue when she returns this April.”
Educate yourself on this coming national elections. In her recent courtesy call with President Noynoy Aquino, Pia spoke before the media and reiterated how important voters’ education is in shaping the country’s future. Do your research, know your candidates, and don’t be swept by the hype. Really, really do think about who’s the best and fit candidate to help and lead the country.
Make people smile… and help everyone who wants to do the same thing. You look at Pia and you just see a ray of sunshine. At the mere show of her pearly whites and ear to ear grin, you’d feel just how infectious her smile is. It only gets better when she assumes the face of the new advocacy campaign for Smile Train, the world’s largest cleft charity which represents hope, joy, perseverance, and transformation. So make people smile, and help people who wish to do the same.
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Photograph by AC Dimatatac from Instagram.com/unicefphils