Mayor to lead launching of ‘Once Islas’ on Sunday Print
Saturday, 30 June 2018 16:28

Mayor Beng Climaco will lead the soft launching of “Once Islas” for eco-tourism of Zamboanga City tomorrow, July 1.

The event showcases the city’s rich natural resources and breathtaking sceneries, making Zamboanga the premier tourist destination in Mindanao.

The “Once Islas” is a group of 11 islands located within the political boundaries of Barangays Panubigan and Dita, east of this city.

The “Once Islas” complements the city’s pride and famed Great Sta. Cruz Island which continues to attract more and more visitors far and wide, and the latest visitor amazed by the island’s potentials was environmentalist and philanthropist Gina Lopez.

Lopez, the erstwhile secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), visited the Sta. Cruz Island last June 26 for community assessment of the project under the “Yellow Boat of Hope.”

Lopez specifically cited the island’s amazing potentials for eco-tourism with its pink sand beach, a fishing village, a lagoon with stingless jellyfish and pristine mangrove.

“This is the place to go. My hopes and dreams are here,” she said.

Lopez is currently heading her “iLove (Investments in Loving Organizations for Village Economies) Foundation” that has launched a nationwide competition dubbed as the Quest for Love program, where the winning organizations will have the opportunity to undergo mentorship, get access to government grants, and be featured in a television show, among others.

The competition stared with a shortlist of 16 groups that can be either social enterprises, cooperatives, people’s organizations, foundations, non-government organizations, or other socially oriented groups.

In Zamboanga City, the Yellow Boat of Hope is one of the 16 groups that qualified for the competition. The 16 organizations will then be trimmed to eight, which will receive financial and technical support, with the hope of spreading social and environmental development.-(Vic Larato)