Year Ender: 2017 Best Filipino Pride Stories

What does it take to be a Filipino Pride story amidst all the challenges presented to the Philippines this 2017? recalled the year’s top good news that you liked most and came out with this list of the best stories that gave us the greatest sense of pride to be Filipino.

From an environmental rockstar, a former Bond girl, Michael Bolton’s protégé, wake boarding champs, to Visa-free travel, the Pacquaio robot, food problem solutions, and the heart of the Filipino – these top good news stories of 2017 make your own heart swell with Filipino Pride.

We present these sources of national pride that embody the excellent triumphs of Filipinos around the world, great positive actions that show the best of what our collective soul as a nation can do, and extraordinary inspirational stories that encourage the Pinoy spirit.

How proud are you of being Filipino? Let us count the ways…

1. WE ARE PINOYS: Gina Lopez bags Int’l prize for championing islands ecosystems

Gina Lopez, the feisty former environment secretary, takes the top spot overall as she took her advocacy for sustainable communities to the global stage and earned the Seacology Prize for championing island ecosystems.

“Gina Lopez has shown the vision and courage the Seacology Prize is meant to honor,” said Seacology’s executive director, Duane Silverstein. “She has fought for the Philippines environment and to give island communities there a voice in the decisions that affect their natural resources and their lives.”

Receiving her award in October, Lopez remarked, “The Philippines is a country of 7,000 islands, and I hope this award will affect the entire country. And because the Philippines has so many diverse ecosystems, and so many animals and plants that occur nowhere else, saving our islands has direct global impact as well.”

Read More WE ARE PINOYS stories here

2. GOOD BALITA: Here are All The Countries Pinoys Can Visit Without A Visa

The good news that Pinoy travelers are welcome in 61 countries even without Visas excited many Filipino passport holders.

Find out which nations you can visit in Europe, North America, South America, Africa, and Oceania.

Read More GOOD BALITA here.

3. TECHNOLOGY MILESTONES: Barangay Aquaponics Can Potentially Solve The Food Problem In The Philippines

Robi del Rosario developed a novel way to address food security: “Aquaponics” – the science of growing plants without soil in a way that almost anyone can replicate.

His Barangay Aquaponics project aims to help marginalized communities to solve one of their biggest concerns: the lack of access to healthy, nutritious food.

The simple system looks complicated but is actually pretty easy to replicate: a fish tank is positioned right below a grow bed, and waste generated by fish like tilapia and shrimp are converted to food for the plants by nitrifying bacteria. The plants, in turn, filters and recirculates the clean water back to the fish, where the cycle begins again.

Del Rosario’s buy one, give one social business concept where his group provides an aquaponics system to marginalized communities whenever anyone buys one from them, also spreads awareness about the benefits of Barangay Aquaponics.


4. BIZ PROGRESS: Chinese tycoon Jack Ma says Filipinos have the “Heart to Serve,” shares Success Secrets

People were interested in what Chinese billionaire Jack Ma had to say about Filipinos during his visit to the Philippines in October.

The 53-year-old Alibaba Chairman, an icon in the technology sector says Filipinos have a “heart to serve.”

“Filipino people have the best heart (for) service. It takes centuries to build up the heart to serve the people. The Philippines has great talent, great capabilities. No other country in the world has that,” Ma said.

Read More BIZ PROGRESS reports here

5. BEAUTY OF THE PHILIPPINES: Former Bond Girl Set To Promote PH As Tourist Destination

Several contenders for the top Beauty of the Philippines story included the inclusion of Philippine airports in the Best Airports of Asia list, the FollowMeTo Couple’s Vlogs about the Philippines, our islands as Top Vacation Spots, and the country’s new beauty queens. But the story about the former Bond girl Rachel Louise Grant de Longueuil or Rachel Grant garnered the most eyeballs.

Grant, who was born in the Philippines and starred with Hollywood heavyweights like Pierce Brosnan, Halle Berry and Jean-Claude Van Damme, has never forgotten her roots, and came back to the Philippines documenting at least seven stories to boost the Philippine tourism industry.


6. ENTERTAINMENT SUCCESS: Lance Busa wins Michael Bolton Talent competition

Filipino Lance Busa was handpicked by Michael Bolton as the winner of the Bolt of Talent on Star World premiere season in September.

The singer from Butuan City in Mindanao won a record deal and performance contract in Michael Bolton’s Asia Dream Tour as part of his prize. Lance also became a Subaru Ambassador.

After being announced the winner in the finale show, Busa said, “I think everything is a dream because everything started with my dream. That was my dream. I hope I made the Philippines proud and I hope I made my grandpa proud…”


7. CAMPUS EXCELLENCE: Pinoys Make Manny Pacquiao Robot to Win RoboWorld Cup

The 6-member winning Taguig robotics team from the Senator Renato Companero Cayetano Memorial Science and Technology High School (SRCCMSTHS) and Kapt. Eddie T. Reyes Integrated School (KERIS) in Taguig brought home the gold and silver from two events at the 2017 FIRA RoboWorld Cup in Taiwan.

Creating robot versions of boxing champ Manny Pacquiao and Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, the Taguig team won the Gold Trophy for Youth U19 Cliff Hanger event, and the Silver in the Youth U19 Mission Impossible event after they successfully made a robot that knocked out another, and another one float in water.

Read More CAMPUS EXCELLENCE stories here.

8. SPORTING GOLD: Pinoy wakeboarders win titles at world championships

Winners of Amateur Men Category (from left to right): Khaled Alawadhi, Stephen Vano, Braz Guilherme and Camarines Sur Gov. Migz Villafuerte.

Filipino wakeboarders proved to be world-class riders at the 2017 WWA Wake Park World Championships held in October at the Camsur Watersports Complex.

The World Wake Association winners included:

  • Stephen Vano, Champion in the Amateur Men Category
  • JP Canuto, first place in the Amateur Wakeskate Category
  • Marvin Tucio bagged third place in the Master’s Men Category

Read more SPORTING GOLD triumphs here

Everyone has a good story to tell, and we on will be there to share the good news. Cheers to the New Year and more good news for the Philippines!

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Angie Quadra-Balibay
Angie is a self-confessed reformed news critic who vows she has finally found infinite value in delivering the good news. She teaches students of all ages how to make the important interesting for audiences across media platforms.