UNICEF: Auction for action

by - December 17, 2015

Being in an Export Management course for years now as my college degree, it is not hard to come by the name Kenneth Cobonpue. He may be a world-renowned industrial designer, but his designs are also export worthy in our field of studies. :) That's why when I heard he made the chairs for the APEC 2015, it was really exciting to see the designs that he had come up with. After APEC 2015 though, I even got more ecstatic, because I got invited to see the chairs personally and find out more about UNICEF's Auction for Action. :)

The event was held at his Showroom at The Residences, Greenbelt.

Taking inspiration from blades of grass, Conbonpue's iconic chairs are made of high-quality rattan reeds and manufactured in Cebu where he is based. The special iteration of the Yoda chair for APEC is wider and taller. It also has armrests and a swivel mechanism that enables one to turn effortlessly inboth directions.

"After the APEC dinner, I received a lot of inquiries about the chairs the world leaders used. But I think  they are so much more than just pieces of furniture to be sold at face value. They're not a part of our history that can serve a better purpose."- Kenneth Cobonpue

Despite being world-renowned, I truly admire Sir Kenneth Cobonpue for being grounded and donating his chairs for such a great cause. Instead of selling his chairs for his benefit, he whole heartedly let it go for the benefit of UNICEF's program for children. :)

The live auction was held last December 16 at Kenneth's showroom at Greenbelt. 

The six Yoda chairs that were auctioned are those used by U.S. President Barack Obama, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, and Philippine President Benigno Aquino III. All the proceeds from the auction will benefit the UNICEF's 1000 days campaign.

Each chair comes with a special plaque bearing the name of the state leader and a certificate of authenticity from Kenneth Cobonpue. :)

The chair of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earned one of the highest bids at the auction fetching Php 2,050,000!:)

And guess what? As of today, December 17, 2015 - with a total of Php 8,810,000 in funds raised for the benefit of children, the special UNICEF Auction for Action with Kenneth Cobonpue becomes the most successful auction organized by UNICEF special Advocate for Children Daphne Osena-Paez.

"More than the amount we raised, we are also very happy that we were able to use this event as an opportunity to raise awareness on the importance of a child's first 1000 days of life."- Daphne Osena-Paez

UNICEF's 1000 days campaign aims to help children get much-needed support during the first 1000 days of life, a golden window of opportunity with benefits that last well into adulthood. UNICEF says that investing in a child's first 1000 days brings better outcomes for the child. It also lays the foundation for nation-building by reducing expenditures in health and education and providing the country with a quality workforce. 

All six limited-edition APEC 2015 Yoda Chairs were sold out within just two hours of the live bidding!:) How amazing is that??

"We're very thankful for Kenneth's generosity. This auction will go a long way in ensuring more children can benefit from this life-changing UNICEF initiative."-Lotta Sylwander (UNICEF Philippines Country Representative)

The amount raise will enable UNICEF to help save the lives of over 50,000 children and mothers. :)

I'm truly honored to have witnessed such a great cause and I hope more people will continue to donate to UNICEF's campaigns. :)

For more information about UNICEF and its work please visit www.unicef.org/philippines :)


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