Last August 25, 2023, ABS-CBN Foundation (AFI) kicked off its first Partners Circle event to celebrate the Verde Island Passage’s declaration as a Mission Blue Hope Spot. During the event, Joal Ascalon, head of Bantay Kalikasan, described the work that the Foundation has been doing with communities, local government units, and biodiversity experts to help protect and conserve the Verde Island Passage.

The event also served as a platform to showcase the importance of the Verde Island Passage and encourage more partners to support the AFI’s efforts in its conservation. Roberta Lopez Feliciano, Managing Director of ABS-CBN Foundation, expressed the importance of unity, stating, “It’s really simple. We’re just here to look for champions. There is strength in numbers. I hope all of you become champions with us in our desire to bring hope, love, and freedom to all.”

The event was graced by an esteemed group of partners, including GCash, USAID via Gerry Roxas Foundation, JP Morgan Chase, Siemens Energy, Northern Operating Services Asia, Puregold, PYC Foods, Batangas State University, and Dr. Peter Rivera. Their presence at this intimate yet powerful gathering symbolizes the growing momentum behind the AFI’s mission. The Partners Circle is set to expand and champion AFI’s other advocacies including child welfare, disaster resilience, education, and sustainable livelihood, and there’s a seat waiting for you among fellow advocates.

Interested in partnering to support the conservation of the Verde Island Passage? Email Trisha Anne Mandap at