PayMaya: Making Holidays More Fun in the Philippines!

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Calendar check: it's December 23, 2015: crunch time! - It’s that time of the year when everyone’s just so busy with last-minute shopping, parties and of course, holiday vacations.Worry no more! Make your holidays extra special , hassle-free and fun by getting the best deals and one-of-a-kind finds with the most convenient way to shop - through your PayMaya mobile app, the all-in-one digital payments innovation that can give you an instant virtual Visa. Let PayMaya spell out a whole new world of digital commerce and online shopping convenience for you!

Check out how PayMaya can make wonders on your virtual shopping spree!

1. Gift-shopping  
Still completing your holiday shopping? Everyone’s looking for unique gifts they can buy for their loved ones, and there’s no better place to look than online shopping sites. Shopping online also allows you to access online-exclusive fashionable clothes from websites like ZALORA, various goods from and limited edition beauty products from Beauty MNL. The things you can buy will be unlike the things you’ll find going to the mall, and are guaranteed to make your loved ones smile.

2. Staycations
For people looking for unique experiences, PayMaya partnered with Airbnb to give a promo to PayMaya users so they can book unique accommodations around the world. Up to December 31, PayMaya users can enjoy P1,500 discount (for minimum P4,500 booking cost) on their first Airbnb stay by just using the promo code PAYMAYA + first 6 digits of PayMaya card upon checkout to enjoy the discount. With Airbnb, you can book beautiful and inspirational spaces that deviate from the regular hotel bookings that people usually resort to: from entire houses, to cozy lofts, even castles and villas.
Meanwhile, if you’re not going out for the holidays, you can use your PayMaya Visa card for exclusive dining discounts at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza. Visa often offers exclusive-only promos all year round, and as a partner of Visa, PayMaya users have the special privilege to avail of discounts at hotels and other restaurants just by using their PayMaya Visa.
3. Food deliveries
You can spice up your salu-salos and order Japanese, Korean, Greek, Spanish, and plenty of other cuisines from over 1000+ restaurants by ordering from foodpanda. Customers get P200 off their order by using the code: NOCHEBUENA.
4. Music, movies, books and so much more!
The holidays are a time for rest and celebration of thanksgiving with family and friends, and there’s no better way to do this than with music, movies, and books. To start off, you can get
get Spotify Premium with PayMaya so you can listen to your favorite artists offline non-stop, with no ads, just music. First time Spotify Premium users can get Spotify Premium for just P9.00 for 3 months.
Going out to watch a movie? If you don’t want to wait in line, especially for the new Star Wars movie, you can reserve tickets online with your PayMaya Visa at SM Cinema, Robinson’s Movie World, and SureSeats for Ayala malls.
Meanwhile, for all the book lovers who want to tuck themselves in with a good book and a cup of hot chocolate, they can use their PayMaya to purchase books for themselves or friends at Amazon with a 30% discount off the regular price, with a maximum discount being $10. To avail the offer, customers will simply have to type in the promo code HOLIDAY30 while checking out the item.
5.  Buy and send load - as a gift!
It’s a heavy call and text season, when we’re all busy sending well wishes to everyone. As a special treat, PayMaya is giving an 8% discount off Smart load packages. PayMaya users can either buy Smart load packages for themselves or better yet, send the load as a gift for loved ones this Christmas. Share the love!
6. Last minute traveling
Thinking of some last minute get-away for the holidays? You can easily book a flight around the world with Philippine Airlines using your PayMaya Visa. All the seat sales will be popping up this season so make sure to keep a watchful eye out!

All these and more? With PayMaya, #NowYouCan !

Find out more why PayMaya is now the no. 1 financial mobile app in Google Play Philippines through

Fireworks and Up Dharma Down on SMGS' Grand Year-End Party!

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The 2nd Pyrotechnics Competition in General Santos City has just concluded but SM General Santos wants to bring you more! End the year with a bang with Up Dharma Down on SM's grand Year-End Party on December 30, 7pm at The Roof Deck. Enjoy the spectacular splash of colors in the sky with their grand fireworks display.

Up Dharma Down is a Filipino pop-rock band who was nominated as the Coolest Band in Yahoo! OMG Awards in 2011. One of their famous songs is “Tadhana” which was the theme song of the blockbuster movie, “That Thing Called Tadhana”. Their electric music was enough to be featured in the July 2007 issue of Time Magazine.

To jam up close with the renowned band, just simply avail a VIP pass through a single receipt purchase of P1000 at any SM City General Santos mall tenant plus 1 pair of SM Cares Bears of Joy available at the Mall Atrium. Avail now as the VIP seats are limited to the first 500 customers only.

Bring the whole family to an absolutely year-end bash!  Get entertained with the world-class voice, witness the magical fireworks display and enjoy the get-together dining at The Roof deck! 
Let SM fill you with an awesome serving of beautiful fireworks across the Gensan Skyscape! See you there! Happy Holidays, Generals!

SM Mindanao Malls go Extra Mile for ChriSMiles

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December 16 marks this year's "ChriSMiles" Project of the Employees of SM malls across Mindanao . “ChriSMiles” is an initiative of the SM Supermalls’ human resources department which encourages its employees to make people smile this Christmas. Participation of mall employees are through cash or donation in kind, as well as share their time in various activities for their identified community beneficiaries.

Over 200 underprivileged children in SM Mindanao Malls will be treated to a fun-filled day and the most wonderful holiday season they deserve.

SM City Davao will accommodate 57 kids from Isla Swerte Day Care Center which they adopted from Brigada Eskwela last June. The kids will have a fun morning at the mall with a short program showcasing the talents of the kids, mascot interaction, fun games, gift-giving and sharing a meal with the mall administration employees. The children will be toured around the mall and will get to ride the mall’s kiddie facilities for free- cartoon mill, mall train and the carousel.

In SM City General Santos, 50 children from different sectors including St. Agnes Orphanage, kids of agency personnel, Substitute Home for Girls and Gensan Center for Boys will be delighted for mall rides, gifts and snacks. Adding to the kids’ delight will be the appearance and the dance number of the well-loved mascot, Hamburglar.

ChriSMiles beneficiaries with SM City General Santos 
employees met McDonalds’mascot, Hamburglar 

SM Lanang Premier have chosen 67 children from their agency personnel. Their program includes parlor games, mascot appearance and giving of presents at SMX Lobby. 
ChriSMiles beneficiaries had fun with an activity prepared by SM Lanang Premier empoyees last year.

Meanwhile, SM City Cagayan de Oro will grant 50 smiles for 50 excited children with 50 wonderful moments they will create from 50 generous employees who will get the chance to make a difference in the lives of their chosen beneficiaries.

Kids from DSWD Reception and Study Center and DSWD Haven for Women Dependents enjoyed a fun-filled day SM City Cagayan de Oro last ChriSMiles 2014 

This ChriSMiles project is being implemented simultaneously in all SM Supermalls. For the past years, this has brought smiles for thousands of Filipinos this Christmas and will continue every year hereafter- a tradition of giving to the communities.

How To Display the RP Flag

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Reverence and respect shall at all times be accorded the flag, the anthem and other national symbols which embody the national ideals and traditions and which express the principles of sovereignty and national solidarity. The heraldic items and devices shall seek to manifest the national virtues and to inculcate in the minds and hearts of our people a just pride in their native land, fitting respect and affection for the national flag and anthem, and the proper use of the national motto, coat-of-arms and other heraldic items and devices.---reads Section 2 of the REPUBLIC ACT NO. 8491

Recent events made me realize that a lot of us are not aware of how the Philippine National Flag should be displayed. Pity how some people think of it as mere props for the stage. Well, you don't just throw the staff there for nothing. For us players in the MICE industry, IT IS important that we know how to display the National Flag in case you get to put up a National Convention, a Congress or a Conference together. (No, don't raise one during a Debut!). 

And for us movers in the ACADEME, we cannot be the poor benighted souls on our National Symbols. We ought to impart PATRIOTISM. Ever heard the line, Next to GOD , our duty is to our country? Nah, am not telling you to go and eat a bullet in Luneta. Just hang the flag PROPERLY.

If you must display the National Flag, observe the following:

  • When the National Flag is flown with flag or flags of other countries, the flags must be of equal size and on separate staffs of the same height. The National Flag shall be hoisted first and lowered last. 
  • When displayed in a row of house flags, the National Flag shall be in front of the center of the line or on the left (observer's point of view) of the row. The house flags should be arranged in alphabetical order, by precedence or by protocol order from left to right (the observer's point of view). 
  • When displayed in a row or in a parade with flags of other countries, the National Flag shall be on the left (observer's point of view) of the other flags. The flags of other countries should be arranged in alphabetical order from left to right. 
  • When in a parade with house flags, the National Flag shall be in front of the center of the first line. The house flags should be arranged in alphabetical order, by precedence or by protocol order from left to right (the observer's point of view). 
  • When displayed in a semi-circle of flags with other countries or house flags, the National Flag should be at the center. When displayed in a circle of flags with other countries or house flags, the National Flag should be flown on the flagpole facing the main road (point of reference- Kilometer 0, Rizal Park, Manila); or in front of a monument; or the main entrance of the building.
  •  If the National Flag is displayed indoors on a flagpole, it shall be placed at the left of the observer as one enters the room or flat against the wall.
There you go! So that we can be guided the next time we display the flag...:)

SM General Santos Gives You More than just the Sweetest Christmas Ever!

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It's an all systems go for the Grand Christmas Launch of SM General Santos City on November 7, 2015 @ 5:00 in the afternoon. Watch out as they light up the mall's Giant Christmas Tree filled with the sweetest cupcakes and candy canes and be amazed with plush indoor magical fireworks.

Exciting performances from the Dominican Choir, SM Little Stars, HTC Marching Band featuring numbers from Poinsettia Ballerinas, Teatro Ambahanon, Royeca School of Ballets and other characters have been lined up for kids and kids at heart to enjoy.

And who else will complete the Christmas scene but the big white man with the big white beard himself! Santa Clause is definitely coming to town to spread the joy of giving as SMGS  will be giving away early Christmas presents to 50 selected children during the launch.

Fret not coz you and your little ones will also have the chance to tickle Santa on November 7 and on December 21-24 . Not only that, if you are a Sanrio baby, well you better get ready to bond with Hello Kitty and the gang at the Meet & Greet Session on November 20-21 and on December 12-13. For just a minimum purchase of P500 worth of Hello Kitty merchandise, you and your friends will have the chance to get purr-fectly close with your favorite Sanrio character.

Wait! There's more! Come along and march with the band at the Christmas Parade on November 21, December 12-13, and December 21-27. Parapapampam! And shop till you drop at the Great Gensan Sale on November 13, 14 & 15 . Enjoy up to 70 percent discount on great selections mallwide.

Truly, at SM, they've got it all for you! Have a very Merry Christmas , Folks!

Celebrate Christmas with SM City General Santos! For inquiries, check-out SM City General Santos (Official) on Facebook, or call (083) 878-0667.

The Journey : There is HOPE

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October 22, 2015 marked a journey that will forever carve a poignant memory for me and  my BOIS students from the ACLC College of General Santos. It was the day when we paid a visit to the Substitute Home for Girls (SHFG) at Barangay Fatima, General Santos City.

The SHFG is a temporary shelter for girls who had suffered sexual exploitation and child abuse from the hands of their perpetrators. At the moment, SHFG is taking care of 19 girls aged 7-19 years old.

Generally aware of the sad circumstances in their lives, my class and I had chosen the SHFG as the beneficiary of our outreach program. I did the necessary briefing prior to the trip so that my lot may avoid saying or doing anything that would take the wheel away from "JOY" and give the chance for "Anger" and "Fear" to maneuver. No,no. Not today. The objective was to bring forth felicity and share a few gifts to the girls.

We opened the program on a high note, thanks to the energetic host of the day, Clair. She sincerely expressed her gladness of being there with her classmates, and I think it was very sweet of her to tell the girls how beautiful they all are.

After the pleasantries, we warmed up to simple dance steps that somehow helped clear the awkward air around us replaced by contagious laughter that filled the place as we played from one game to another.

And what does one do when games zap out the energy in you? Replace it!So now we party with food from the pantry. Teng! Teng!

Each SHFG housemate gets a packed meal of fried chicken,
 vegetable lumpia, a cup of rice, a choco bar and
 a can of Dole Pineapple Juice courtesy of Dolefil.

Shortly after lunch, the girls took turns in singing to while away a few minutes before we move on to our next activity. Little did I notice that some of my students and I were already trying to fight back the tears as the girls sang Leah Salonga's song, The JOURNEY...

I have been to sorrow
I have been to bliss
Where I'll be tomorrow
I can only guess
Through the darkest desert
Through the deepest snow
Forward, always forward I go

This was the second time I heard those girls sing the song and yet , it did not fail to give me the chills knowing the harrowing stories each one  of them has to go through in this cruel world. I can't help but weep.

What a journey it has been
And the end is not in sight
But those stars are out tonight
And they're bound to guide my way
When they're shining on my life
I can see a better day
I won't let the darkness in
What a journey it has been

Whew! Well, they are past the darkest desert now. God works in wondrous ways. Being here at the Substitute Home may just be the start of a better journey for these girls. And lucky are we as the girls have prepared a dance number for us, too! We were entertained by their tambourine dance. Through this number, we would like to believe that these girls believe somebody up there is indeed bound to guide their way.

Our time was ticking away. We gathered the girls in the center of the Hall, and with their House Mommies led by Ms. Tine, we presented our simple gifts to them. These were vanity kits courtesy of the Greenleaf Hotel and our generous benefactors who helped us raise funds for this activity.

We also gave them something that they can use for recreation: some board games and a new Volleyball. And what do we do with a new ball? FRIENDSHIP GAAAMMMMEE!

 While the girls were busy playing, we were told by one of the house parents that we have been  allowed to make "Kwentuhan" with the girls. I was hesitant at first. I'm not sure if my kids will be able to handle the "sharing" appropriately. This was something we were not prepared for. When we came, we know that we ought to be sensitive with what we say to or ask from them lest we stir some emotional outpouring from any of the girls.

After the game, we served creamy egg pies courtesy of Jo-Ann's Bakeshoppe and asked the girls if they  are willing to share their stories with us. We will only listen to what they would want us to hear. No pressures. And just like that, I saw small heads group together...and then silence swept around the hall...followed by sniffs...and deep breaths. And when I looked around, I saw my kids in silent tears, disbelief and horror written on their faces. It was a heartbreaking scene.

Each girl narrated a painful story. Imagine a 15 year old girl impregnated by her own flesh and blood. A 16 year old girl sexually abused by her father over and over again, with a mother who refused to believe a daughter's cry for help. A 7 year old orphan molested by her guardian. A 9 year old girl exploited and sent to laborious work for a living. A 15 year old victim of prostitution and drugs...God. My heart is bleeding. I can feel my ears burning, and my hands sweating. How can these young people suffer so much? How can people do such a formidable act to these young souls? I think I'm gonna puke.

But now, they are here at the Substitute Home. Away from their assailants. Far from the sickening world outside with house parents to take care and protect them.

And then it was time to leave. Emotions were up. Hugs were tight. Kisses were exchanged. We've found new friends. The girls asked us to come back soon. "Kahit wala kayong dala, Ate. Bumalik kayo. Malungkot kami dito..." The words were daunting.

As we drove away from the Substitute Home for the Girls, I offered a silent prayer...for all the 19 girls whom we have shared the afternoon with...and for the many others suffering the same fate. I prayed for the good Lord to send many of His Samaritans to save these poor little things from further harm. I prayed for my students, that they may appreciate the things that they enjoy now: food, family, freedom and more. I pray that they may be kept safe from these ghastly situations. I prayed for my own kids' security...and thanked Him for allowing us to be a blessing to others.

There is hope. We will see a better day. 

BOIS, you've got one proud mentor here...:)

TNT Extend 4545, Extending Kulitan and Kiligan All-You-Can sa Halagang P5 Lang!

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Nagging my kids about how they waste food on their plate, over-spending  on unnecessary items and failing to re-purpose stuff is nothing but a normal scene at home. As a mother hen of three, I try to inculcate to my chicks how important it is to learn how to stretch what little resources their Papa and I can provide for them.

A lucky mom that I am, am happy to share that my kids grew up to be very understanding and never demanding when it comes to keeping up with what is "uso" among their circle of friends. In this time and age where even a toddler already owns a gadget even before they're able to walk, my kids are actually lucky to have received their own smartphones just three years ago! And, an agreement was forged between parent and child that they have to save for their own cellphone loads!

Well, sighs of discontent and attempt to appeal were made, to no avail! Take it or leave it ang peg ng Mudra here! After all, I gave up buying the gadget I wanted ( and needed) that time, to score them brand new ones! So that left them with no choice! Tipidtrip it is. Overtime, my kids learned to value the airtime they buy. Good thing there are unli-loads and combo packages being offered by network giants. However, they often get disappointed because of the chunky part it steals from their meager allowances.

Good thing, Talk & Text, the largest value brand under Smart Communications, Inc.,(SMART) has come up with this brilliant  and affordable idea! The TNT Extend! For only P5 per day, my kids get to enjoy the same promo offerings they enjoy without having to worry about expiration and hurting their pockets.And the best part there is that TNT allows you to use this offer up to 365 times as compared to the 30 times similar offering of a rival network. Now that is what you call streeeeeeetching!

No more reasons not to drop Mom a sweet message or howler Pop for some muscled help or even tweet about their newest noon time addiction, the AlDub kilig moments!

Incidentally, TNT has launched the now famous tandem of Alden Richards and Yaya Dub to be the face of this recent offering, bannering TNT Extend and extending kiligness all over the world wide web. I dunno about you, but my lot is becoming hooked to the love story of this power couple from Eat Bulaga. Even hubby has his own share of cheesy moments here. Gosh! 

All that a TNT Subscriber needs to do is to :
Enroll  to SELECTED TNT Promos, 
Text EXTEND to 4545 and 
Wait for a confirmation from TNT---that's it! 

Now you can enjoy  extended fun under the sun! 
To learn more about this promo, visit


This is a sponsored post by Smart Communications, Inc.

Miss World Philippines 2015 Candidate # 23: Janette Roanne L. Sturm, General Santos City!

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Following her victory as Reyna ng Aliwan Gensan 2013, Ms. Silka Central Mindanao 2003 and Ms. Socsargen 2012Filipina-Dutch beauty Janette Roanne L. Sturm will be representing General Santos City in this year's battle for beauty and brains, Miss World Philippines 2015.

Standing tall and proud in all 5 feet and 7 inches, Sturm has obtained her bachelor's degree in Mass Communication  from Ateneo de Davao University with latin honors (Cum Laude). She is seen as an active participant in the fashion and modeling industry of the region as well.

Having a soft spot for children in her heart, Sturm has chosen St. Elizabeth Cranofacial Foundation, Inc.'s Project: Ngiti ng Pag-asa, a project for the cleft lip and palate children of Socsksargen, as her beneficiary for her Beauty with a Purpose Project.

Let us, as one General, join Janette in her journey. 

Go, Candidate # 23, make us proud!

SMGS Partners with the CoMELEC for Biometrics Registration.

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Be Counted!

In line with the Commission on Election's campaign for "No Bio, No Boto", SM Supermalls has partnered with the agency in providing accessible and convenient venue for the Biometric registration. Come Halalan 2016, voters whose biometrics have not been captured will not be allowed to cast their votes.

In General Santos City,  September 21-22 & September 28-29, 2015 have been slated to cater applicants for biometric registration at The Event center of SM General Santos. Applicants are required to bring a photocopy of any government-issued ID or a photocopy of Birth Certificate. Voters are also encouraged to have their biometrics validated to avoid inconvenience come election day.

Biometrics registration will end on 31 October 2015.

Casa Rafael: Gensan's First Value Business Inn

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Planning for a business trip to the land of Tuna anytime soon? Do business as usual in Gensan's first value business inn : Casa Rafael.

Located at the heart of the City, Casa Rafael conveniently stands near major shopping centers, hospitals , churches and the seat of the Local Government. It has the space and essential amenities that would make any businessman's stay relaxing and convenient.

Here's a quick look at Casa Rafael's facilities:

Check out their Introductory and Published Room Rates below.

DIY: Tattered Jeans

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I've always fancied wearing tattered jeans. Always. I think its cool and young!(read: Pugong sa edad). I've been silently checking some of 'em distressed pairs at the malls too. Took mah time appreciating the stuff, running mah fingers on the loosened edges or the lacy underlines before taking a peek at the price tags...and scurrying far from it because of the dollars ringing (in uder words: MAHAL!)

But, because of this uber urge to jump into my own tat, I went on scavenging over what little rubbish I got and viola! Got meself a good candidate: my old pair of BNY jeans. Come to mama, baby. We're gonna do some ripping!

So here now is the transformation of a jeannie:

  1. You're gonna need some ARMS! I used a cutter and a pusher to help me loosen the threads. But you can also use a pair of scissors to a cut a hole in your jeans. You're also going to need some stuff to thin the spot. Got myself a sandpaper for this. You can also grab a steel wool or a pumice stone. 

 2.Some Fillers. You're gonna need something to fill your pants with before slicing through, unless you want both sides of the pants to get the slash. I used a folded magazine for this. A thin piece of wood or a small chopping board will also serve the purpose.

3.  Mark the spot. Lay your jeans out flat on a table and with the help of a pen or a marker, draw a line to where you wanna start  ripping off. Normally, people want to cut around the knee part or somewhere near the leg area. It's really up to you.

4. Let's Fray! Loosen the fibers of the jeans before cutting it. You can do this using a sandpaper. This step might test your patience, depending on the thickness of your jeans. Also depends on whether you have already achieved that "distressed" level you got drawn inside your mind.

5. It's time to loosen up! Once you're done with the fraying, you may now wound up your jeans a bit and start pulling through the threads. Leave the white threads. Once you pick a thin thread out, it's gonna be easier to harvest the others. I used a pusher for this step. BUT! Please don't follow what I did! Take the jeans off, my golly!

Now go! Work on your imagination! Give those old, dusty jeannie a new life. Rip 'em up! 


Updates on the 16th National Tuna Congress Resolutions

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Every year, the National Tuna Congress passes a set of  resolutions. These resolutions are proposals for policy or action, or both, which are put before the plenary for adoption. They often contain a declaration of principle as well as the demand for action or a change of policy. These resolutions are then circulated to concerned government agencies, organizations, and industry stakeholders for appropriate actions.

For months, the NTC Program and Resolution Committee drafts these resolutions to reflect current issues and concerns of the industry. These are a result of consultation, researches, deliberation and drafting with key industry stakeholders.

From the desk of Mr. Neil del Rosario , Co-Chairman of the 17th National Tuna Congress- Finance Committee ,General Manager, Rell & Renn Fishing Corp. Vice President of the Fresh Frozen Seafood of the Phils., Inc., below is an update on the resolutions submitted during the 16th National Tuna Congress: