Reigning Mrs. Asia Pacific Global Avon Morales (right) is joined by MMG Queen of Hearts Foundation founder and CEO Mitzie Go-Gil (also seated), and her fellow queens Mrs. Philippines Asia Pacific Tourism Rosenda Casaje (left) and Mrs. Philippines Asia Pacific Cosmopolitan Mary Chris Abacahin (second from right)./FACEBOOK PHOTO
MAKATI CITY — Reigning Mrs. Asia Pacific Global Avon Morales has been holding charity events to celebrate her birthday since 2010. And even with the limitations posed by the quarantine measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, she still found a way to continue her tradition.
Earlier this month, Morales visited the Kids with Purpose International Orphanage in Muntinlupa City to mark her natal day through a donation drive. The charity mission was carried out through the MMG Queen of Hearts Foundation, the local organization that sent Morales to the Mrs. Asia Pacific pageant in Singapore in 2019 where she won the top prize.
“Mother Queen Mitzie Go-Gil, thank you for organizing my birthday missions. I was so hands-on in organizing them, but because of my busy work schedule, it left me so little time to do it,” Morales said of the foundation’s founder and CEO, also an international beauty queen winning the Mrs. Asia Pacific Tourism crown in 2018.
Several other queens pitched-in to Morales’ birthday mission—2019 Mrs. Worldwide second runner-up Llena Tan, 2019 Mrs. Philippines Asia Pacific Cosmopolitan Mary Chris Abacahin, 2021 Mrs. Southeast Asia Worldwide Sarima Paglas, 2021 Mrs. Philippines Worldwide Joanna Krisanta La Madrid, and 2021 Mrs. Philippines Asia Pacific Tourism Rosenda Casaje.
The delegate from Agusan to the 2021 Mrs. Queen of Hearts Philippines pageant also took part in the event, where the foundation distributed care packages to more than 20 children under the institution’s care, as well as their foster parents.
Morales said her mother’s triumph over the “Big C” fuels her passion to hold birthday missions. “It has made me live a life of stewardship and purpose. It strengthened my passion to help others and to make a difference in the community, to give back to God,” she told the Inquirer in an online interview.
The beauty queen customarily holds her birthday charity event at her adopted Aeta community in Claveria, Cagayan. But because travel has been restricted due to the pandemic, Morales sought Go-Gil’s advice.
Morales said she looked up the Kids With Purpose International suggested by Go-Gil, and found that “the organization’s purpose is aligned with my ‘personal whys,’ which is to help the children and youth discover their purpose and become future empowered leaders and difference-makers for their generation.”
The children and their foster parents are not allowed to leave the premises, so Morales said they are assured that the institution’s wards have not been exposed to COVID-19.
Morales said both she and Go-Gil expressed their gratitude to the children for making them happy on that day. “Seeing their delighted faces made us happier,” Morales said.
The queens also thanked the foster parents for their patience and strength.
This has been Morales’ second birthday mission as a reigning international beauty titleholder because her reign has been extended due to the pandemic.
“Maybe God is telling me to continue inspiring and enabling a lot of people to learn from my experience and missions, and to be more driven to do more for the community,” she said.
Morales is set to relinquish her title in May, and she hopes her successor “focuses on something great beyond just wearing the crown and sash. I want her to be the voice and force who can do great things.”