Unilever, Smart, Cebuana Lhuillier Strengthens Partnership With A Shared Mission For Environmental Sustainability

announcement, mum for a cause, Unilever, eco-friendly, eco-friendly stuff
Surf sachets are used as an additive in creating cement pavers

Three industry leaders—Unilever, through its number one laundry brand Surf, Smart Communications and Cebuana Lhuillier—have renewed their commitment to champion environmental sustainability. With their shared mission to improve Filipino lives, the partners launched the third year of their Sachet Recovery Program. Through their joint efforts to create a process that is easy, convenient and rewarding, the program involves and educates more consumers about sustainability and waste recycling.

Unilever Philippines Chairman and CEO Rohit Jawa thanked their partners for their continued support in the endeavor to reduce the environmental impact of sachets. This, according to Jawa, is in line with the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan that aims to double their business while cutting their environmental footprint in half, and in the process, bringing a brighter future to one billion people worldwide.

announcement, mum for a cause, Unilever, eco-friendly, eco-friendly stuff
Surf, Smart and Cebuana Lhuillier turn over cement pavers to the Mandaluyong Elementary School

“We owe the Sachet Recovery program’s success these past two years to the valuable contributions of Smart Communications and Cebuana Lhuillier. This year, their bigger participation will definitely produce greater results for the benefit of the environment and Filipino communities,” Jawa said.

Since 2013, the Sachet Recovery Program has been teaching proper waste segregation and recycling by encouraging millions of Filipinos to collect empty Surf sachets in exchange for free Smart texts at any Cebuana Lhuillier branch nationwide.

Continue Reading

Unilever launches Surf Labahan Station in Mayorga, Leyte

announcement, products, pr, eco-friendly
The Surf Labahan Station in Mayorga, Leyte

It is a constant challenge to do whatever we can to help alter the effects of climate change as much as we can and help save our environment. It is good to note that a lot of big companies are also joining the movement and lending a hand in order to promote environment-friendly alternatives. Here is another good news from our friends from Surf Philippines regarding the recent launch of their earth-friendly laundry facility in Leyte.

Surf Philippines has turned-over a sustainable and environment-friendly laundry facility in Barangay Union Coastal, Mayorga, Leyte that recycles water for reuse in washing clothes.

announcement, products, pr, eco-friendly
{top} The Surf Pocket Garden in Mayorga, Leyte, Some residents of Barangay Union Coastal in Mayorga, Leyte wash their clothes using the newly launch Surf Labahan Station

The number one laundry brand in the Philippines created the Surf Labahan Station, featuring a water filtration system that can clean and recycle up to 6000 liters of laundry water every day. The facility’s flooring is composed of pavers made from recycled Surf sachets, and the area can accommodate up to 20 people.

“This Surf Labahan Station is our way of contributing to water sustainability and conservation, especially in an area that is still suffering from the effects of typhoon Yolanda,” said Lavin Gonzaga, Unilever’s Sustainable Business and Communications Assistant Manager. “In line with Unilever’s Sustainable Living Program that aims to bring a brighter future to one billion people worldwide, we want to provide a sustainable source of clean water through this facility.”

announcement, products, pr, eco-friendly
Surf strengthens its commitment to give a brighter future to Filipino communities by providing a sustainable water source through the first Surf Labahan station, inaugurated in Mayorga, Leyte. The solar-powered station boasts of a unique filtration system which cleans water previously used for laundry. In photo are Vic Ferrer, Operation Compassion Field Operations Officer; Lavin Gonzaga, Unilever Sustainable Business & Communications Assistant Manager; Kagawad Lucia Mundala, Barangay Union Coastal, Mayorga, Leyte; Mayor Alex De Paz, Mayorga, Leyte; Cha Francisco, Surf Brand Assistant Manager; Maui Velasco from Unilever PR, and Rick Valenzuela, Operation Compassion Livelihood Officer.

Gonzaga said that like in most rural areas nationwide, residents in the Mayorga community still get water from deep-well pumps for their household needs, including laundry. “While deep-well pumps provide water to address the community’s short term needs, these sources are not sustainable and are not environment-friendly. Water is oftentimes dirty and contains oil, so it’s not ideal for washing clothes.”

For her part, Surf Assistant Brand Manager, Cha Francisco, said the Surf Labahan Station’s water recycling facility makes it an ideal learning tool on sustainable water management that can benefit both the community and the environment. “Through our partnership with non-government organization Operation Compassion, volunteers will teach the community about the importance of water conservation, how water filtration works and how to properly use the Surf Labahan Station.”

Volunteers from Operation Compassion will stay in the community and help in the sustainability and maintenance of the Surf Labahan Station. They will also help in rehabilitating the community and teaching residents how to plant vegetables and fruits as a form of livelihood and a way to maximize the water recycling system.

Continue Reading

Energy Deficiency In The Philippines + What We Can Do To Help

The electric and water interruption caused by energy deficiency we experienced last month is really cause for any mum to worry. I remember the same situation in the 90’s and I cannot imagine how we’d be able to sleep well at night without electricity especially with a little guy who easily gets sweaty to worry about and put to sleep. The few days of interrupted power and water supply were very difficult with no power to charge mobile phones and get most appliances working and no water on the tap to wash dishes, clean up and bathe. The little man was one of the many who patiently waited for the lights to be on again. Thankfully, he was able to while away the time tinkering on our mini microscope which we got a few months back during our trip to The Mind Museum. He also volunteered to do some worksheets and when the weather cleared up was excited to go out for a walk in the neighborhood. Luckily, the power returned during the night allowing us to have sufficient and comfortable rest. Not most are fortunate and some provinces even had to wait for a few days before the power was restored in their places.

The power interruptions is probably just the tip of the iceberg about this energy deficiency hoopla. The continuously-increasing monthly electric bill is but another thing that is getting on mum’s nerves. They are noticeably increasing every month and you worry whether there will come a day you will have to set aside half of your monthly income just so you can settle your monthly electric consumption.

About a month ago, I was relieved to find out that our bill went down and we managed to maintain it for 2 consecutive months. Now am not really sure what we did to make it go down, but I guess spending hours out does help a lot. Those almost 4 hours of being away from home and not consuming any electricity, apart from the fridge, is probably the main reason why we are paying low bills these days. I do hope we can maintain this amount. I guess it also helps that I am trying to put my son and myself on self-imposed time away from the telly and the computer for our own good. I am hitting two birds with one stone in doing so, I was able to discipline my son on excessive hours spent watching cartoons and movies and I was able to accomplish so much more whenever I impose a no-internet day during the weekends, not to mention I am helping reduce our monthly electric consumption.

The news on the lack of power supply in our country, which we shall be experiencing in full swing by the summer of 2015, is really quite alarming. Power interruptions from time to time is inconvenient and annoying already, I wonder how we would all fare if we have to put up with regular power disruptions and on a sweltering summer day at that! This is why I think it really is a must that we consciously do our part in conserving energy and raise our little ones to do their share, too.

Lucky I was raised by parents who are mindful about saving water and electricity that it has become my lifelong habit to turn off and unplug everything especially when we are heading out. Now I am passing on the habit to the little man and I am glad that he is more than willing to cooperate. Even when he is still little to unplug appliances, he can now turn off the electric fan in our room and he has been doing this ever since I thought him each time he wakes up. So all I need is unplug the fan before we head out for school.

Here are a few simple ways you and your children can practice at home so you can help save water and electricity and do your little share. This problem is all our problems, after all, and we must do our very own contribution to help alleviate if not totally eradicate it:

To conserve water

  • Make sure the faucet is tightly closed each time. If you have leaks, have them repaired immediately.
  • Use drinking glasses while brushing your teeth instead of letting the faucet run as you go about it. Teach your little ones to do the same thing.
  • Recycle water used for laundry to water the plants in your yard, clean the bathroom or wash dad’s car

To save up on electricity

  • Make sure all the appliances are unplugged when not in use. Even when are turned off, they still consume little electricity if they are plugged to the sockets.
  • Switch to LCD tellys as they are so much more energy efficient
  • Switch to energy-efficient LED lights. Apart from having longer lives, these LED lights are also very earth-friendly and will enable you to use much lesser amount of electricity.

And here are some tips I got from Meralco’s flyer:

For airconditioners

  • Check and clean your air filters
  • Follow the prescribed maintenance in your product manual

For refrigerators

  • Defrost regularly to make sure your appliance is running efficiently
  • Check your door gasket and ensure that your refrigerator doors are sealed tightly to prevent cold air from escaping
  • Clean the condenser coils at the back of your ref, these are designed to remove heat from the fridge
Continue Reading