August 22, 2011

Miss Earth 2011: saving the environment with a smile

The crusade to save and protect the environment continues as Miss Earth officially marks the beginning of another meaningful milestone in its 11-year history. Reigning Miss Earth Nicole Faria of India and her court arrived in Manila for a week-long visit to the pageant’s birthplace to undertake a series of activities that will raise consciousness on the need to save and protect the environment, and promote the coronation night slated in November in Pattaya, Thailand.

“We are very pleased to welcome the Miss Earth 2010 winners to the Philippines,” said Carousel Productions, Inc. president Ramon Monzon. “We hope that with their presence, we will be able to carry out the pageant’s mission and get more people involved in our cause.”
Nicole is in the country together with Miss Earth Water Watsaporn Wattanakoon of Thailand, and Miss Earth Air Victoria Shchukina of Russia. They flew in from Bangkok after the successful launch of Miss Earth in its host country for 2011.

“I’ve heard a lot of wonderful things about the Philippines and I’m thrilled to be here,” Nicole enthused. “It is my pleasure to work with the Miss Earth Foundation, and I am so excited to meet the Filipino people and help protect the natural wonders of such a lovely country.”

The reigning queens are scheduled to make a series of public appearances on behalf of the Miss Earth Foundation throughout their stay in the country. “Through these activities, we hope to give our Miss Earth winners a first-hand experience of the projects that we do in our country,” according to Miss Earth Foundation executive director Cathy Untalan.

The official activities of the Miss Earth 2010 winners commences on July 30 as take part in the opening games of the Philippine Ad Congress’ badminton tournament, and will also grace Philippine Daily Inquirer’s Read Along project.

August 1 will see the ladies paying a courtesy call to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, followed by a visit at SM Supermarket to promote the chain’s “I am Plastic-Free Campaign.” Capping the day will be stopover at the Tayuman Elementary School in Rizal as part of the foundation’s “I Love My Planet Earth School Tour.”

The following day, August 2, is devoted for a coastal clean-up and tree planting at the Las Piñas-Parañaque Critical Habitat and Eco-Tourism Area.

Fashion has always been part of a beauty queen’s life and the winners, along with the Miss Philippines-Earth past and present title holders will sashay on the runway in a special fashion show on August 3 at the Discovery Suites in Ortigas, featuring a 36-piece collection of Frederick Policarpio.

Finally, the winners will be off to De La Salle University in Manila on August 4 to participate in a forum dubbed “Fostering Beauty and Responsibility through Environmental
Stewardship.”

A reason to smile

While the 2010 winners are busy participating in various projects and activities, the preparation for the 11th edition of the Miss Earth coronation night is well under way. Faria will be turning over her crown on November 12 in the Pattaya, Thailand, one of Asia’s largest tourism destinations. International franchise holders of the Miss Earth pageant are already fielding out their representatives for the coming pageant.

“We have received a lot of favorable feedbacks from different franchise organizers,” shared Carousel Productions, Inc. executive vice-president Lorraine Schuck. “They are very excited to send their delegates and share their respective environmental advocacies.”

Representing the Philippines is Athena Mae Imperial from the Municipality of Casiguran, Aurora. The 24-year old stunner works as a program researcher for a major television network. She bested 49 other candidates in the Miss Philippines-Earth pageant held last May.

Aligning with the International Year of the Forests, this year’s staging of the Miss Earth pageant is expected to be a grand showcase of Thailand’s rich culture, tourist spots, and more importantly, its efforts to save and protect the environment. The pageant’s theme will be carried out through the inventive use of the smiley icon, which echoes Thailand’s image as the land of smiles. Despite the calamities happening in different parts of the world, Miss Earth 2011 hopes to get the global community to work together for the preservation of the environment and bring smiles back to people’s faces in the process.

Carousel Productions, Inc. will be working together with PD Creation, an event management company based in Bangkok with vast experience in handling major productions, in coming up with yet another world-class television special. Miss Earth 2011 will be aired live on Starworld, the largest cable network in Asia and Middle East, and will also be aired on The Filipino Channel and in countries participating in the pageant. It will be locally televised on ABS-CBN.

The Earth’s brightest gems

Nicole Faria is the first delegate from India to bag the Miss Earth title. Born in Bangalore, the 21-year old freelance model is in her final year in college where she is majoring in Psychology. Prior to joining the Miss Earth pageant last year, Nicole has been named Model of Year (Bangalore) in 2008 and Miss India South in 2010.

She is very proud of her Indian heritage and its diversity, where old world values fuse with new world ideas. Through her travels, she hopes to promote India’s culture, its hospitable attitude of the people, and their reverence for Mother Earth. Nicole also hopes to help India increase its literacy by working towards rural education and empower their youth in saving the environment.

From Miss Earth’s host country, Thailand, Watsaporn Wattanakoon is a 22-year old TV anchor at the Bangkok Broadcasting and TV Co., Ltd. She attended Chulalongkorn University where she took up Communication Arts. Her goal is to continue and support the “Children for the Earth” project started by Miss Thailand Earth 2009. This project is aimed at educating Thai children about the different ways to solve environmental problems.

The newly-crowned Miss Earth Air is Russia’s Victoria Shchukina, a 23-year old university graduate with a degree in Social-Cultural Service and Tourism. A resident of Tver City, Victoria plays the piano, loves snowboarding and skiing, and has travelled to different parts of Europe. Her father is a pilot while her mother is a photographer. She wants to be involved in projects that teach children the value of respecting nature and the environment.

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