FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
On November 1, 2018, a self-funded team of ten women from Singapore, Macau, Kuala Lumpur, Manila and London, will set sail across the remote islands of Palawan in the Philippines on a traditional Paraw sailboat raising awareness and funds for women’s empowerment and environmental conservation.
The team, working together under the banner of HER Planet Earth, a women's advocacy group headquartered in Singapore that supports the improvement of women’s lives with the integrity of the environment, aims to highlight the importance of climate change and the urgency of preserving the earth for future generations.
Indeed, climate change and environmental degradation are known barriers to sustainable development, augmenting existing inequalities and gender often remains the untold story behind climate change. In many countries, women are among the most vulnerable to climate change and environmental impacts, partly because they make up the larger share of the agricultural workforce and tend to have access to fewer income-earning jobs. The destructive forces of nature, impacted by rising global temperatures, which manifest in cyclones, floods and other extreme weather conditions, which can act as negative force multipliers in societies already riven by inequality.
A core objective of this expedition is to visit and offer support to the Tao Kalahi Foundation, which includes projects for the advancement of women, children's education, organic farming and local traditional crafts for this region of Palawan. The team will also visit and learn from the Sulubaai Environmental Foundation, an organisation dedicated to conserving, protecting, and restoring the natural resources of Palawan through environmentally sustainable practices and active ecosystems restoration. Operating in and around the island of Pangatalan, a Marine Protected Area or “No-Take Zone”, Sulubaai aims to protect the coral reefs which are the breeding grounds for fish and other marine creatures. They are committed to improving the resilience of ecosystems and increasing fish stock in the area for sustainable living of the families and villagers in the area.
The Sailing Expedition is set on a stunning 74-foot sailboat, the largest Paraw in the Philippines, which is a revival of an almost forgotten Filipino maritime culture dating back more than 1000 years. Meandering through the beautiful Linapacan island group from Coron to El Nido, the expedition will combine stretches of pure sailing with time for exploration of the islands, reefs, and villages along the way to discover what support may help advance the women and their local environmental challenges. The team will camp on the shores of raw untouched islands, explore fishing villages, discover hidden jungle routes and visit the various project of the Tao Kalahi Foundation and the Sulubaai Foundation.
The women in the islands that the team will be visiting live a very simple existence and one thing they don’t have is access to hygienic and appropriate sanitary wear. In view of this, the HER Planet Earth team will be bringing plastic-free, washable and reusable sanitary packs from Binti International, a UK-based charity that operates a sustainable community projects manufacturing low cost sanitary towels.
“While climate change is a global phenomenon, its impact is not spread across a level playing field. Its effects are felt locally, and poor people suffer the most. Among the world’s 1.3 billion poor people, the majority are women. That is why it is vital that we support and empower more women to play a central role in decision-making at all levels of society. Only then will environmental sustainability become a true reality,” said HER Planet Earth Founder, Christine Amour-Levar, who wants to see ‘gender’ at the heart of climate action.
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About HER Planet Earth
HER Planet Earth is a global women’s advocacy movement that promotes a deeper connection between women empowerment and the integrity of the environment. The non-profit organisation, which is headquartered in Singapore, aims to inspire more women to become policymakers and agents of change to achieve social and economic equity and a healthy and thriving planet.
HER Planet Earth organises pioneering, self-funded, expeditions around the world to increase awareness of environmental degradation and raise funds for programmes that empower and educate underprivileged women affected by climate change - ultimately helping them build climate change resilience. The organisation partners with nature lovers, environmentalists, scientists, polar explorers, adventurers, women’s rights advocates, corporates, tech entrepreneurs, feminists and NGOs that have programmes and structures in place dedicated to building a deeper connection between gender equality, genuinely sustainable development and the protection of the environment. www.HERplanetearth.com
About the Tao Kalahi Foundation
Founded in 2008 the Tao Kalahi Foundation works like an extended family in a sustainable micro-economy across a 200km stretch of islands. Creating jobs and providing opportunities: women’s group, food production, water security, schools, and scholarships – offering alternate means of livelihood and access to education among families challenged by isolation and the collapse of the fishing industry. The foundation works with what is already here; utilising abundant resources and harnessing existing skills to come up with sustainable solutions.
The foundation is inspired by what the Tao expedition business has already achieved, geared towards inclusive growth. Solely funded by the Tao tourism business, the Foundation is an open space for both sharing and learning. Their goal now is to create a stronger impact not just within island communities but looking outwards, reaching out to other communities in the Philippines, welcoming collaboration towards sustainable development. http://www.taokalahifoundation.org
About the Sulubaai Environmental Foundation
Sulubaaï Environmental Foundation is a non-profit foundation devoted to protect and restore Pangatalan Island Palawan. In 2011, Sulubaaï Environmental Foundation was born out of a common love for the ocean and desire to help the local communities of Palawan. The foundation decided to implement the first project site on Pangatalan Island. At that time, they found the island in various states of damage so their first task was to prevent further negative impact. In March 2016, the foundation started focusing their efforts on a 45- hectare Marine Protected Area (MPA) surrounding Pangatalan island. Their development model comprises people, environment, and the economy hinged on a sustainable strategy. https://sulubaai-foundation.com
About Binti International
Binti International is a UK registered Charity who establishes and operates self-sustainable community projects manufacturing low cost sanitary towels. We also deliver bespoke educational programmes raising awareness around menstruation in the UK India and Nairobi. Our projects are micro factories designed for entrepreneurial women self-help groups. We provide the manufacturing equipment, assist with funding options and set up distribution channels to deliver low cost sanitary towels within the community. Binti runs collection and donation drives for vulnerable girls and women in the UK. We deliver educational programmes for the wider community too focused on ensuring that girls understand periods before they start their cycle.https://binti.co.uk
The team of this HER Planet Earth Philippines 2018 Expedition from Asia and Europe is formed by ten intrepid women of diverse nationalities and backgrounds. While they are all incredibly well accomplished in their careers, they are equally passionate about protecting the environment and empowering underprivileged women. To read the team bios please click here.
To donate the mission please visit the team's fundraising page here.