By Michael Angelo S. Murillo, Senior Reporter
NOW more than ever, perseverance is needed.
This is at the center of sports and lifestyle products retailer MAP Active Philippines, Inc.’s latest advocacy, through its banner brand New Balance, #WeGotNow PH.
Officially announced on May 12, the advocacy seeks to focus on inspiring stories from the sporting community to foster that “moving forward” mind-set amid the tough challenges presented by the pandemic.
“This pandemic held sports to a standstill. However, our sports community has shown great resilience and grit to keep optimistic and productive despite the challenges and took action to progress it in its own creative ways,” shared Sugar Meneses, MAP Active marketing director at the online announcement of their campaign.
“The WeGotNow PH Advocacy is dedicated to our sports community which has been proactive and made positive contributions for sports and different causes. By sharing the stories of our #WeGotNow PH heroes, we hope that others will take on the challenge of trying to make the most of the moment to make a difference for good.”
To help in its advocacy, which also has New Balance donating over P2-million worth of new basketball shoes to underserved but deserving communities nationwide, the shoe brand partnered with like-minded sports leaders as its advocacy heroes.
They are Jose Rizal University men’s basketball coach Louie Gonzalez, former Universal Reality Combat Championship women’s champion Geli Bulaong, and Ateneo de Davao athletics director Noli Ayo.
All three shared that the pandemic initially slowed down effectively their thrusts for their respective causes but eventually they found their footing to push ahead and find ways to bring their message across.
“This pandemic did not stop me from imparting my knowledge to other trainers and coaches. By pushing basketball-related content out, I was able to encourage fellow coaches to be positive and see the situation as an opportunity to improve and plan,” said Mr. Gonzalez, who has been active on social media with the LGONZ Corner, a Facebook coaching group he created which now boasts of almost 1,500 active member coaches both local and foreign.
“I stepped up hoping that in my own little way, I could inspire these trainers and coaches and at the same time, encourage them to be there for their family and athletes who need them most. We need to engage and connect with each other; to fight anxiety by promoting an active lifestyle through home workouts and training.”
The same goes for Ms. Bulaong, who along with four-time World Jiujitsu Champion Meggie Ochoa is staying the course amid the pandemic on raising awareness on safeguarding children by way of sports like jiujitsu and muay thai through their advocacy Fight To Protect.
Mr. Ayo, meanwhile, found a way to keep sports going by creating spaces for athletes, coaches, sports leaders and experts to connect and learn from each other during the pandemic. His Moving Wonders Forward learning program has grown and spun similar initiatives made by the close to 200 regular attendees of the learning sessions. He has also gone on to lead dozens of online sports leadership projects down South.
Inspiring stories like these are what New Balance wants to put front and center to underscore one not to be swamped by the challenges and instead to dig deep in pursuing their passion be they in sports or life in general.
“We believe in the power of now to take action — to help the sports community and inspire our fellow Filipinos. And that’s why we are doing what we can in our own small way to provide a little hope in this trying time,” said Ms. Meneses.
For more information on New Balance’s #WeGotNow PH campaign visit its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NewBalancePhilippines/.