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Beyond COVID-19, HIV and other illnesses deserve attention too

Friday, October 23, 2020


The COVID-19 pandemic’s wide-reaching and extraordinary effects particularly to public health and the medical field has, unfortunately, created other grave consequences that have come unnoticed. As focus, as of late, has been on the novel coronavirus, attention on other equally critical illnesses and diseases has seemingly taken a back seat.


Among these illnesses, the World Health Organization (WHO) identifies Tuberculosis or TB, Malaria, and HIV as the among the most serious. In fact, the WHO notes, TB claims 1.5 million lives a year, while NGO Frontline AID states that 38 million people live with HIV worldwide. Of this, 12.6 million or 33% have been unable to access HIV treatments during the pandemic induced lockdowns.


The impact of COVID-19 on HIV programs and patients


A report from UNAIDS reveals that one in four people living with HIV have reported problems with gaining access to important medications. Similarly, HIV programs are among those that have had disruptions in services, with up to 85% of existing programs affected based on a survey by The Global Fund, a partnership that mobilizes and invests funds to support programs towards AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.


Of even greater concern, Frontline AIDS further observes, is how the coronavirus, alongside HIV and AIDS, has a greater impact on people who are already marginalized. Specifically, it is those most affected by HIV who will feel the brunt of the effects of the coronavirus, especially with how lockdowns and quarantines have made access to much-needed antiretroviral medicines, not to mention visits to hospitals and health centers, extremely difficult.


The importance of HIV protection and prevention


In light of the above situation, and in view of recent data from the DOH-Epidemiology Bureau that shows 2,818 newly-confirmed HIV-positive individuals from January to March of this year, protection from HIV is truly the best way forward.


Actively doing its part in informing the public on the importance of protection, preparedness and education regarding HIV is Durex. Through its latest multimedia Protection & Preparedness Education (PPE) campaign—featuring vlog collaborations, online university talks, and e-learning videos—Durex wants the public to be properly informed and kept safe from HIV during this pandemic. The public is also enjoined to visit Durex Philippines’ official Facebook Page and YouTube Channel, where they can be kept up-to-date and informed.


And since no one is invulnerable to catching HIV in these times, being prepared in encounters – to always come prepared – is a must. And clearly, as we all do our share in preventing the spread of COVID-19, we must also be responsible in protecting ourselves and others from catching HIV.


Thursday, October 22, 2020


All About Baking located at the ground level of SM City Baliwag carries a wide selection of local and imported baking supplies. They offer bakeware, tools, cake accessories, plus unlimited range of ingredients for baking. You can also find here items and ingredients for designing cakes and cupcakes. They also cater chocolate and kitchen equipment for seamless baking.

The new normal taught us the different ways to discover extra skills, find means to unwind or better yet make a living out of our creativity and ideas— a popular example is baking.

Whether you are a pro or a beginner in the field of baking, the best way to come up with quality cakes and pastries is by investing on the right tools, materials and ingredients for baking. Good thing is that, SM City Baliwag brings All About Baking— a specialty store that offers local and imported baking products.

All About Baking, considered, as a haven for bakers and pastry chefs is a wholesale and retail specialty store that carries a wide selection of baking essentials. There are bakeware such as baking pans, moulds and liners, tools and cake accessories, plus high quality ingredients for baking cakes and pastries.

Cake decorating is a lot easier with All About Baking’s wide range of products for designing cakes and cupcakes. Chocolate equipment are also found here, such as molders and chocolate fountain.

All About Baking also caters kitchen equipment for seamless baking. You may find here specialty equipment, portable stove, dispensers, mixers and blenders. Visit them now at the ground level of SM City Baliwag. You may also check out All About Baking located at the second level of SM City Marilao.

For latest updates and promos, visit SMCityBaliwag at Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as well as SM SUPERMALLS BULACAN Viber community.

Experience the new with realme 7, realme 7 Pro, and the realme Buds Q! Get yours now at Shopee!

What are the factors to consider in choosing a smartphone? Price, how about specs? And what about brand? With all the existing ones, it’s quite difficult to choose so let me make it easier for you.

Realme is the top 2 smartphone brand in PH considering barely two years of presence in the Philippine market, the fastest growth speed in local smartphone history. That goes to show how much consumers support their products which can be attributed to quality and durability as well as their after sales service. Some even say their software is better. I, personally own one which I truly love because of its reliability in games. 

Recently they launched new products which they sell at Shopee that everyone will surely take notice of and will definitely sell like pancakes. 

Realme 7 8gb RAM+128gb ROM

It is the first smartphone powered by MediaTek Helio G95 mobile processor. Ideally for modern-day gamers & entertainment fanatics, this smartphone not only boasts of a high quality gaming processor, but also a 6.5-inch 90Hz ultra-smooth display, a 16 MP in-display selfie camera,  2nd Generation 64MP Sony IMX682 rear quad-camera system. It comes in Mist Blue and Mist White

At P14,990, it comes with :
30W Dart Charger
USB Type-C Cable Protect Case Protect Film SIM Card Tool
Important Info Booklet with Warranty Card

Realme 7 Pro (8gb RAM + 128gb ROM)

This model features a 65W SuperDart fast charge which guarantees the phone to be fully pumped in 34 minutes. It has the same design and colors with the previously stated model above. However, the Pro version is slimmer and lighter giving it a more compact body. The screen is a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display. A microSD slot that is expandable up to 256GB is also included.

At ₱17,990 it comes with:
65W SuperDart Charger 
USB Type-C Cable 
Protect Case 
Protect Film
SIM Card Tool 
Important Info Booklet with Warranty Card

Realme Buds Q 20-Hour Playback Time

This piece of audio technology is designed by none other than Jose Levy, a multi-awarded designer known the world over. Its exquisite design is based on the round shape of  cobblestones which apparently is a perfect fit for your ears. Due to its frosted texture, it feels like a cobble flowing in your hands. It comes in yellow, black, and white. You won't feel a thing when it's on your ears since it only weighs 3.6g which is lighter than a sheet of A4 paper. It is powered by a 400mah battery for 20 hours total playback. With its 10mm Bass Boost driver, the bass is more powerful and deep, and gives the same experience as in a concert. Lastly, it is equipped with R1Q chip that supports Bluetooth 5.0 allowing instant connection. Oh and before I forget, it also has IPX4 water resistance to prevent sweat and rain from damaging the device, giving you full sense of reliability.

Available for ₱1,490

If you are lucky enough, you can purchase these items at an even lower price during the Flash deal on the 23rd of October.

Visit the official store of Realme here
Download Shopee for free on App Store or Google Play Store.

Xiaomi launches Mi 10T Pro and powers creativity with its Mi Pass10n Project


Photo 1. Xiaomi Film Fest 

Creativity knows no boundaries. Even as Filipinos stay at home and take precautionary measures with physical distancing there are those who have found ways to express themselves through art that reflects the new normal.

Three Filipino indie filmmakers have taken on the Mi Pass10n Project challenge to produce short films that reflects life under lockdown, powered by the features of the Mi 10T Series. Che Tagyamon, Glenn Barit, and Sonny Calvento were able to create stunning short films using the impressive camera features of the newly launched Mi 10T Pro phones, which come with a 108 MP camera for Mi 10T Pro, 64 MP triple camera for Mi 10T and 144 Hz AdaptiveSync Display.

Visual storytelling

Two short films were screened simultaneously with the much-awaited Philippine launch of the latest Mi Series, to highlight the capabilities of the phones and to inspire aspiring artists to create their own visual stories.

Che Tagyamon and Glenn Barit were impressed with the quality of the images produced by the latest Xiaomi phones. Their short film, titled Maski Papano chronicled the journey of a discarded face mask, who traipsed through the city and found companionship in another mask. Their stop-motion images using the Mi 10T Pro’s camera have captured the quieter pace of the metropolis, offering an immersive experience for those who have not left their homes in the past months. “We love how easy it is to shoot and edit the film with a phone camera that made powerful features portable,” says Tagyamon. “It was easier and safer for us to go around the city and shoot on location without having to use heavier equipment, and we even only had to charge it once during the shoot.”

Photo 2. Maski Papano by Che Tagyamon and Glenn Barit 

For his short film titled “Sunshine, Sunshine”, Sonny Calvento color-graded his character to reflect her personality and perspective. Sunshine, the lead character eventual transformation towards self-love. The story tackles the feeling of loss and isolation especially during the lockdown, with a turning point catalysed by conversations with a stranger leading to Sunshine’s enlightenment. “Editing to achieve that desired effect around my characters was easy with the video that was produced because of Mi 10T Pro’s color profile. With the camera capturing the interiors in vivid detail, it was easy to be more creative and playful with my vision using the Mi 10T Pro.”

Photo 3. Sunshine, Sunshine by Sonny Calvento 

Tech guru Carlo Ople unboxed the Mi 10T Pro at the exciting launch event and was impressed by the features of the new Android smartphones. “Mi 10T and Mi 10T Pro are game changers when it comes to capturing crisp images. The 7P lens offers impressive light gathering that unlocks the full potential of the 108MP camera setup plus, it is combined with AI Pixel that offers comprehensive pixel optimization for more vibrant pictures. This is a pro-photo, pro-video phone that allows the users to get creative with no boundaries –even under lockdown.”

The Mi 10T and Mi 10T Pro that are equipped with the LOG Mode that adds depth and color to editing and the RAW mode that helps you to create the perfect shot even under the toughest lighting conditions.

Empowering creators

The Mi 10T and Mi 10T Pro are fitting flagship products to launch at the company’s 10th anniversary. Ava Castillo, Head of Marketing of Philippines, Xiaomi, says that its advanced features offer its users the power to create their own content by capturing their ideas and bringing them to life. “We are very proud to be a supporter of the local indie creators, who are bringing a whole new dimension on art and how we see the world around us through their visual stories.”

With the inspiring films that were produced by Che Tagyamon, Glenn Barit, and Sonny Calvento using the Mi 10T Pro, Xiaomi Philippines is launching the Mi Pass10n Project to power the creativity of independent and aspiring filmmakers, inviting them to produce a 5-minute short film in 10 days that creatively explores their passion and illustrates how they can still pursue it within their borders. Chosen entries from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao will be provided a Mi 10T Pro and a grant of PHP 40,000 to produce the film.

Shopee Kicks Off 11.11 - 12.12 Big Christmas Sale, Aims to Make E-Commerce for Everyone

MANILA, OCTOBER 22, 2020 - Shopee, the leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia and Taiwan, launches its annual 11.11 - 12.12 Big Christmas Sale. It comes off the back of its successful 9.9 and 10.10 shopping events, reflecting the continued growth of e-commerce in the region. This 11.11 - 12.12, Shopee further commits to uplifting communities, generating new opportunities for sellers and brands, and designing stronger shared experiences for shoppers, all as part of its broader vision to make e-commerce for everyone.

Martin Yu, Associate Director at Shopee Philippines, said, “E-commerce has made a profound impact on our lives, and especially so this year. This 11.11 - 12.12, Shopee will strengthen its efforts to ensure that everyone can discover the benefits and opportunities of e-commerce. We are fortunate to be at the forefront of this transformation in our region, and we want to continue creating livelihoods for local sellers and entrepreneurs, ways for people to shop and connect, and new paths to success for businesses.”

Here’s how Shopee plans to step up its support for communities, businesses, and consumers this 11.11 - 12.12 and beyond.

1. Creating impact for communities
Leveraging the digital ecosystem to support those in need

Shopee deepens its commitment to uplifting local communities with the launch of the 11.11 Big Charity Drive. This will occur in each of Shopee’s Southeast Asian markets, supported by trusted social organizations, top celebrities, and the biggest brands in Southeast Asia. The charity drive aims to raise awareness and donations for underprivileged children in the region. Shopee believes that all individuals, particularly the youth, should have the opportunity to succeed in the future digital economy.

In the Philippines, Shopee launches Shopee Bayanihan: Pamaskong Pambata with 11 of the most trusted foundations in the country, including Mano Amiga Philippines; World Vision Philippines; Young Focus for Education and Development Foundation, Inc.; Fundlife International, Inc.; GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.; Save the Children Philippines; Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Philippines, Inc.; Project Pearls, Inc.; Project Smile Philippines; Kythe Foundation, Inc.; and PGH Medical Foundation, Inc. Users can donate by purchasing donation vouchers and goods from partner brands’ CSR collections and co-branded live streams. Participating brands will donate a percentage of their sales to their foundation of choice.

2. Creating opportunities for all businesses
Unlocking e-commerce for sellers, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), and brands

The growth of e-commerce in Southeast Asia and Taiwan has created new opportunities for sellers, SMEs, and brands. This trend is reflected in Shopee, as the number of sellers on the platform increased by 60% year-on-year.

This has created greater diversity in the region’s e-commerce landscape, with aspiring and experienced sellers alike seeking to grow their businesses online. This means that there is no one-size-fits-all approach, as sellers face unique challenges at different stages of their digital journey. Shopee has widened its spectrum of support measures to help all sellers succeed, regardless of experience and size:

Helping new and existing sellers cope with a global pandemic: Over 300,000 sellers, SMEs, and entrepreneurs in the region signed up for Shopee’s Seller Support Package within the first month of launch in April. New sellers also enjoyed 6x sales growth during Shopee’s 9.9 Super Shopping Day in September.
Upgrading Shopee University to empower diverse groups of local sellers: Shopee has enhanced its Shopee University program, including digitalizing the curriculum and widening its online Seller Education Hub so that all sellers can level up their e-commerce skills. Recently, Shopee also partnered with Visa, USAID, Globe myBusiness, and the Quezon City local government unit to equip sellers with the financial, marketing, and e-commerce knowledge needed to succeed in the digital economy.
Seller Masterclasses drive sellers to adopt new tools, adapt to new trends: In the Philippines, Shopee introduced its Seller Masterclass to help sellers leverage the benefits of livestreaming better. Popular streamers such as ClosetbyNikka2600, MyOutfitGallery, and cilebritee_shop shared exclusive tips for reaching more customers on Shopee Live.Shopee also helped local and international brands connect and engage with the region’s digital-first shoppers. In 2020, Shopee co-created 600 Super Brand Days with top companies such as Disney, Samsung, and L’Oreal, who looked forward to growing their online presence and sales. The recent 10.10 Brands Festival also generated strong traction for brand partners, as traffic on Shopee Mall surged 2.5x the daily average.

3. Creating shared experiences
Forging communities, reinventing social shopping on Shopee

Shopee will continue to connect, inform, and inspire consumers across the region. Users can explore similar interests and discover better deals through Shopee’s shopping communities, while enjoying a more social shopping experience with Shopee’s enhanced in-app features.

Shopee connects like-minded consumers and caters to their online needs through communities such as Shopee’s Mom’s Club. Its over 1.5 million members enjoy one-stop access to top global brands for baby products, including Pampers, Enfa, and Nestle, as well as exclusive parenting content from mothers and experts.

For the new generation of digital luxury consumers, Shopee recently launched Shopee Premium, an exclusive destination offering direct access to authentic premium products, while allowing consumers to understand the brands more.

Shopee also enhanced its collection of popular in-app features to make online shopping even more social, fun, and rewarding:

Enhanced social features: Shopee has upgraded its iconic in-app features to better connect sellers, brands, and users during the 11.11 - 12.12 Big Christmas Sale. New auction and polling features on Shopee Live will make the live shopping experience even more engaging. Shopee Feed has also been upgraded with live video “Stories” for real-time engagement between users.Yu closed, “Shopee 11.11 Big Sale is our way of transforming a global phenomenon into one that truly belongs to our region. It continues the strong momentum of our successful 9.9 and 10.10 events, and builds on our long-term vision to transform the lives of people and businesses we serve. Join us as we make e-commerce for everyone at 11.11 this year.”

For more information about Shopee 11.11 - 12.12 Big Christmas Sale, visit

Download Shopee for free on App Store or Google Play Store.

Make bonding extra special just like Regine and Nate Alcasid in this new Jolly Spaghetti Ad

MANILA, October 20, 2020 – As parents, nothing makes you happier than wonderful and magical bonding moments with your child. That quality time you spend with them and seeing them have the time of their lives with you, go a long way in bringing you closer together—especially when their favorite treat is around, too. 

Mom and son duo Regine and Nate Alcasid-Velasquez show what it’s like to have a great time together by simply spending time with each other at home—no need to go somewhere or do something fancy—in their latest Jollibee commercial. The new ad shines a spotlight on how sweet memories are simply made over delicious food; in Regine and Nate’s case, their bonding moments are made more special by the food they absolutely love, which is their favorite pinakamasarap and pinakasulit Jolly Spaghetti. 


That’s because the meatiest, cheesiest, and pinakasweet-sarap Jolly Spaghetti can easily make your day, making it the most sulit treat you can share when you’re bonding with your child. 

“As a parent, you tend to give your children everything, but all they want is your time,” shares Regine. “They’ll get tired of toys. It’s still very important to make time for them—one thing he loves to do that we haven’t done lately is paint together. He loves to paint with me.” 

Regine enjoys doing these commercials with Nate, as he really loves Jolly Spaghetti. She shares one unforgettable moment of how he would have to be told to not eat it during their commercial tapings. “This is no joke, he loves Jolly Spaghetti,” she says. “Even before the shoot, he was like, ‘I can't wait to eat Jolly Spaghetti!' If he had a choice, he would have already ate it before filming pa. He even requested to have Jolly Spaghetti also for lunch! That's how much he loves it.” 

“Regine and Nate’s mother-son relationship is really the best example of how important quality time with the family is,” said Jollibee Marketing AVP for Bestseller Products Cathleen Capati. “And this quality time is made even more special and memorable when bonding over their favorite food especially at a time when most are staying at home.” 

Make bonding moments better and extra special with the pinakamasarap and pinakasulit Jolly Spaghetti today! It’s available for an affordable PHP 50.00 in all Jollibee stores nationwide. Jolly Spaghetti is also available for sharing with the Jolly Spaghetti Family Pan for only P200! 

Have these safely delivered to you via the Jollibee Delivery App,, #87000, GrabFood, foodpanda, and LalaFood! Also available in Drive-Thru and Take Out. 

For more info and updates on Jollibee products, like Jollibee Philippines on Facebook, subscribe to Jollibee Studios on YouTube, and follow @jollibee on Twitter and Instagram.

From Health & Wellness Tips to Career Shifts, Allianz and Mellow 94.7 Bring You Life Hacks for the New Normal

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Tune in to Mellow 94.7 and get life hacks from Allianz PNB Life, one of the country’s leading insurers. Learn how to better manage your health, wealth, and overall well-being with tips on how to handle your stress, savings, diet, and more.

Gino Riola, Senior Vice President and incoming Head of Market Management, said this initiative seeks to inspire listeners and help them navigate the new normal. It’s in line with the company’s Move With Courage campaign, which celebrates people who continue to move forward despite the difficulties they face.

“We came up with ‘Better Ways for Better Days’ on 94.7 to offer solutions to many of the challenges that people face today—from deciding on which career path to take or choosing the insurance or investment that’s right for them,” he explained.

Receive tips in creating home remedies, keeping a stress diary, having healthy savings, having the motivation to exercise, and more.
Apart from these life hacks, you can also learn more about Allianz PNB Life’s various investment and health products. Find out more about Allianz Well!, which provides health and wellness benefits and has an annual plan limit of PhP100 million; Allianz eAZy Health, an affordable and renewable five-year health plan that has enhanced critical illness coverage; and AZpire Growth, which puts your money on well-managed investment funds to make it grow faster.

If you’re looking for a career shift in the new normal and would like to succeed in the insurance industry, listen in as Allianz PNB Life shares its latest job openings and opportunities of becoming one of its Life Changers.

“Mellow 94.7 is your go-to radio station when you want to listen to soothing music, whether you’re out driving, working at the office, or just relaxing at home. Now, you can also receive sound life advice that would help you navigate today’s challenges,” Riola said.

Tune in to Mellow 94.7 every Monday to Saturday, from 7:00 - 9:00AM and 5:00 - 6:00PM to listen to “Better Ways for Better Days” and catch some handy life hacks!

For more information about Allianz PNB Life products, or to know more about how to become a Life Changer, visit