Twestival Manila 2011
Posted March 28, 2011on:
“Twesti-what?” “Twesti-val,” I stressed as I tried to explain to my sister what event it was I wanted to go to. “It’s a Twitter Festival–basically a way for people on twitter to use social media for social good,” I explained.
I thought the idea of having tweeps (twitter people) meet up offline for a good cause was an interesting idea. It wasn’t quite like the tweetups that I’d gone to before. It asked tweeps to “tweet, meet, give” and I’d say that it was the social cause that convinced over 100 people to troop to Le Bistro Vert in Makati that Thursday, March 24.
The event had a modest target, to put up P140,000– an amount that picks up from the 140-character limit of a single tweet, multiplied many times. That evening, the event was able to raise P40,000 and everyone is encouraged to donate until the March 31 deadline.
By the time I’d arrived, the place was buzzing with activity. People were moving in and out of the venue, as others chatted animatedly with cocktails in hand or checked out the exhibit Jeepneed had prepared on the second floor.
There were a number of prizes up for grabs during the evening. Sponsors had provided a number of exciting prizes, including speakers, gift cheques and yes, the 3D/2N stay at Bellarocca Resort. My sister actually won twice; she got a MiLi charger for her Apple devices and a Yahoo! Yodel toy. Lucky, no?
The program was hosted by TJ Manotoc and Kassy and there were some performances from musicians of the Ateneo Musicians Pool (AMP).
The highlight of the evening, (aside from Yves Gonzales aka @doblezeta winning the Bellarocca stay) was the special appearance of Mang Bina of Binalot. He gamely showed some dance moves and posed for photos with his fans.
The sponsors for the event are Bellarocca, Globe, Divoom speakers, MiLi, Binalot, Galileo Enrichment, IMMAP, Le Bistro Vert Sustainable Foods, Pepsi, San Miguel Corporation, Asian Traveller Magazine, Partycetamol Mobile Bar, Nestle Kitkat, Freshman Masucaline Wash, Netbooster, Renegade Folk and Yahoo! PH.
The Twestival beneficiary was Jeepneed, a mobile science and tech lab built in specially designed e-learning jeepneys that will trou around provincial schools. It will be powered by clean energy and outfitted with 3G and WIFI and include laptops and other learning materials that kids can use for practical learning.
What I like about what Jeepneed is trying to achieve is that it provides a step in the right direction. Too often, we hear people complain about the dire state of education in the country and we point fingers at error-filled textbooks, ill-equipped teachers and a government that lacks the funds to educate a growing student population. But here, two girls decided that there was something that could be done about it.
The project also manages to elevate the often-maligned jeepney. We think of it as an everyday sight and sometimes, as the bane of Manila streets. And yet here it is, receiving new life as a driver for education. Who knew? I guess that sometimes, it takes a combination of creativity and vision to take a second look at what we usually take for granted.
Jeepneed is set to formally launch in June and I, for one, can’t wait to see how the jeepney will look once it is ready to rock schools around the country.