IN a country where there is limited formal music training yet a flourishing singing industry, grassroots music teachers and conductors struggle to raise the quality and standards of singing. This is further strained by inadequate opportunities in terms of employment and artistic growth.
Recognizing this, Diageo Philippines thus partnered with Sing Philippines and created the Plan W, a program that will not only touch on the passion of these women, but also on their communities’ love of music.
This, Plan W Philippines is strengthening its aim to further empower its women scholars in time for the National Women’s Month.
The program now supports its beneficiaries as they returned to their communities to develop and enhance their own choirs. The once students now take the roles as leaders by educating and training their vocal groups, bolstering the love for music that is at the heart of the Filipino culture.
“Diageo believes that when women are empowered, society progresses,” said Jon Good, general manager of Diageo Philippines. “Promoting skills, employability, and lifelong learning are keys to empowering women. If you tap into her passion, you give her the power to inspire the people around her, and also show her capability of building a better future for herself. If she knows that she is a leader in her community, then she will always celebrate and live out this role.”
A look back
Launched last September 2015, Plan W Philippines is first of its kind in the country. Through its partnership with Sing Philippines, it provided 34 women vocal teachers and choir conductors nationwide with the proper training in organizing, sustaining, and nurturing choirs.
The participants were immersed in a seven-day intensive training course in University of the Philippines-Diliman the following month, which culminated in a concert at the Philippine International Convention Center.
In line with its ongoing implementation, the scholars are now back in their communities to continue developing their own skill set while imparting it to their own vocal groups. Their Plan W trainors will visit each of the scholars and provide on-site coaching clinics as they observe each of the participants’ application of skills in their respective localities. The trainors will coach the singers from the scholars’ choirs, as well, and give guidance as they prepare for the outcome of the program: a local concert, which the community will watch.
“Plan W achieves a multiplier effect down to the grassroots level as the visiting trainors will not just work with the scholars, but with another 20 to 30 singers from each choir,” said Mark Anthony Carpio, Artistic Director of Sing Philippines. “This reinforces the overall goal of the program: to empower women to make a difference in themselves and in their communities in the way that they know best, singing.”
Plan W, globally, aims to enable women to have the skills and resources to build better futures for themselves. Diageo believes that if women are empowered, they have more access to opportunities, thus their incomes increase, their families become healthier, and their children have greater access to education.
With the aim of empowering 2 million women across all socio-economic profiles by 2017, Diageo’s community investment program, Plan W, has been actively creating programs that nurture and develop the skills of women.
Diageo is the first beverage alcohol company to sign the UN Women’s Empowerment Principles globally. To date, Plan W has empowered more than 115,000 women across 16 countries, impacting more than 575,000 people.