A Dose of Good News: Music Finds Its Way Back to Marawi through Coke Studio

We salute Coca-Cola Philippines and the Coke Studio artists for doing their part in helping Maranaos and the city of Marawi.

Music will once again be heard in the streets of Marawi City and in the hearts of Maranaos as the government and members of the private sector work hand-in-hand to rebuild the city, its communities, and homes. In support of various efforts, Coca-Cola Philippines, through Coke Studio, spearheaded a hydration drive in evacuation camps, including the Maria Cristina Evacuation Camp, Buruun Gym, Sta. Elena Evacuation Camp and Saguiaran Gym, where around 5,000 Maranaos are sheltered.

Each family received various Coca-Cola products, including three 6-liter bottles of Wilkins Distilled water, and Coca-Cola shirts, while young local musicians sang OPM hits for the crowd. Customer partner Shakey’s also provided snacks for the evacuees.

The evacuation center in Saguiaran, which has one of the biggest concentrations of Maranaos, hosted a mini-concert featuring a Coke Studio bands The Ransom Collective and Franco. They sang their own songs and distributed hydration kits to the evacuees.

“This is our way of showing support and solidarity with the Filipino people – to be able to contribute in the rebuilding process. Music is one of the things that threads through every person, regardless of age, religion, culture, and socio-economic bracket,” said Stephan Czypionka, Marketing Director of Coca-Cola Philippines. “We are committed to help the communities that we serve, especially in times like these that we have to come together to rebuild not just the physical structures, but most importantly, the lives of the people.”

Coke Studio was launched early this year and successfully changed the OPM landscape with its creative collaborations with various artists. It also served as a platform for teens and young adults to come together, drawn by their common love for music.

The Filipino youth is also coming together to help rebuild Marawi, driven by their passion for music. A benefit concert at the Mall of Asia concert grounds, and a recyclables collection drive are just some of the fund-raising initiatives to build schoolhouses through the Little Red Schoolhouse program implemented by the Coca-Cola Foundation Philippines.

The construction of a school building is part of the commitment of
Coca-Cola Philippines through the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation’s (PDRF) United4Marawi campaign. The Company also joined the PDRF in a three-day medical mission for the evacuees in Iligan City. Volunteer health care professionals provided check-ups, surgical procedures, and psychiatric intervention to the evacuees.

The Company also provided for the daily hydration needs of the members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines stationed in Mindanao.

“We are committed in helping rebuild Marawi and the communities impacted by this conflict. In partnership with relevant government agencies, we in the private sector will be bringing our sustainability initiatives to the area,” said Jonah de Lumen-Pernia, Public Affairs and Communications Director of Coca-Cola Philippines. “Our 5by20 entrepreneurship programs will be provided for the spouses of soldiers deployed in Marawi, while water systems will also be installed in the communities. We’ll also build a Little Red Schoolhouse.”
Coke Studio staged a benefit concert for the rehabilitation of Marawi on Saturday, December 9th, at the MOA Concert Grounds. Coke Studio artists such as Abra, Gab and John of Urbandub, The Ransom Collective, Gracenote, Moonstar88, Autotelic, Ebe Dancel, Franco, Reese Lansangan, BP Valenzuela, Sandwich, Noel Cabangon, and Curtismith, joined various school bands for the benefit concert. A collection drive of PET bottles was done on site to help raise funds.

Finding God in Music, Nature, the Movies

How does the Lord speak to you? How do you experience His love, His presence?

My number one answer would be nothing less than through His Word, the Bible. All God’s promises are written there. Along with His purpose for you and me, His guidance and of course, His plan for the world.

Aside from God’s Word, I also experience His presence through music. There are times He speaks to me through songs. Lately, I have had some down moments and this was one song which I sensed that God used to comfort me:

There’s this line in the song: Your world’s not falling apart, it’s falling into place which just really blessed me 🙂

Nature is also something that just amazes me and brings me much closer to the Lord. Whether it’s the quiet waves of the sea (or a body of water for that matter), the green majesty of the mountains and plains as they are covered by grass, the blue skies and the movement of the clouds — these move me to praise and thank God.

New Zealand has such amazing scenic places reminding me of God’s handiwork.

I have also experienced watching some films that really gave me a moment of introspection. It’s like God was saying something, reminding me something through the scenes of the film, the characters, even its music. One such film that touched me was the movie, The Age of Adaline. The story is about a woman who doesn’t age. While it may seem a good thing that a woman stays in the literal same age year after year, this reality was not something she can celebrate. After all, while she stays the same, all her loved ones continue to age and then die. The film reminded me that not all seemingly good things are really good for us. And that eternity is meaningless without the people we love, without God.

I am thankful that God can use any medium He wants to speak to us, inspire us and even rebuke us (Psalm 24:1).

A Campaign that Matters: Unilab PH’s #HusayatMalasakit

Sometimes, we end up associating advertisements or marketing campaigns just about selling a product. And so when it goes beyond this consideration, I think we should not just sit and notice. I think we, the consuming public, should appreciate the effort.

When Unilab PH unveiled their Husay and Malaskit campaign, I think we Filipinos did see and notice the difference. How could we not? It reminded us living is not just going about life without a care for what is excellent, without dedication and without care for others.

Unilab PH came up with videos that talked about their own dedication to husay and malasakit. But more than that they came up with videos and campaigns through blog posts and social media reminding all of us– we are where we are today because somebody enough cared to encourage us to excel, somebody cared enough to support us and even sacrificed for us so we could be better versions of ourselves.  We are reminded that whatever version of success we stand on today, somebody guided us, nudged us tirelessly towards it.

May it be that other companies  also make marketing initiatives every now and then that not only talk about how wonderful their product is. That there is more to advertising and marketing than “looking good or being the best” or getting the most profit. That sometimes the best way that our product or business can make a difference is promoting others first 🙂