ELLYSSA MAY CEDILLA
Height: 5 feet 8 inches
Measurements: 33 inches - 26 inches - 36 inches
Occupation/Education: Model / Tourism & Hospitality Management Graduate
Describe your childhood/growing up years (8-13 years old):
I am an alumna of Dominican College, San Juan which is an all-girls school, and I have studied in this Catholic school from Grade School to High School. I have always put into practice our school’s motto: “Laudare, Benedicere, Praedicare” which meant “to praise, to bless, to preach”. I believe that my learning experience in my alma mater has really honed me into the woman I am today.
Also, when I was younger, I have always been fond of modelling and has trained twice in different modelling workshops. My first runway experience was for Garfield when I was only 9 years old, and it was held in Ali Mall, Cubao. During my puberty stage, when I was around 12 years old, I was also enrolled for a modelling workshop at Trumpets Workshop, Podium. Our runway experience this time was held in Aliw Theater (sponsored by SOFA -- School of Fashion & Arts). My mentor was Miss Patty Betita (Binibining Pilipinas 2013), and she has pushed me into joining different VTR’s and Castings.
What lessons did you learn from your childhood/growing years?
The first lesson I learned from my childhood/growing years is to accept myself wholly for who I am. Even at a young age, I have already started to acknowledge my strengths and weaknesses. I was also diagnosed with Scoliosis when I was 11 years old, and this was a crucial stage for me, since I have fought my own battles mentally and emotionally. As a child, I have always dreamed of becoming a flight attendant or a supermodel or a beauty queen, and knowing that my spinal cord is crooked, I have felt ashamed or awkward about my body.
The second lesson I have learned is to be confident despite my flaws. As cliché as it may sound, “Nobody is perfect”, but I believe that accepting ones flaws is also a sign of strength.
Lastly, I have learned to go for anything I want to achieve in this life. I have started to overcome my biggest insecurity before, which was my spine, and even up to this day, I always choose to chase my dreams despite of my condition. I will never let my scoliosis hinder me from becoming the person I want to be, after all, we only have one life to live, and I promise to myself that I will live this life to the fullest!
Most memorable moment:
My most memorable moment would be the time wherein I won my very first pageant which was held in our school. This was year 2014 and I was crowned as “Miss Ecology”. I believe that this pageant was inspired from “Miss Philippines Earth”, since it also values the 3 R’s – Reduce, Reuse & Recycle – and care for the environment. My winning answer was related to the animal extinction with a powerful ending of emphasizing Mahatma Gandhi’s saying -- “You must be the change you wish to see in the world’.
Why do you want to be Miss Philippines Earth?
Ever since I was little, I have always dreamed of becoming a beauty queen. I want to show to everyone that I am not only confident or tall or skinny, but also a woman with a purpose and intellect.
The reason why I want to become Miss Philippines Earth 2021 is because I want to empower and inspire young men and women to become more aware of their surroundings, their environment. Our apathy & indifference has brought our Mother Earth into a brink of destruction, and I want to let the people know that there are still some ways we can do about it.
As an environmental advocate, we can always treat each day as Earth day, and as an aspiring Miss Philippines Earth 2021, I believe I can become a catalyst of change.
What is your environmental advocacy and why did you choose this?
My environmental advocacy is about the Pandemic in the Ocean Floor. I chose this advocacy because I believe that this is very timely with our current fight against the coronavirus. The improper disposal of used tissues, face masks and latex gloves has already been adding up to the existing water pollution – hence, damaging the seabed and killing the marine life.
Personally, proper waste disposal is something we diligently do in our household for years. To most families, it is easier said than done. Proper waste disposal actually requires discipline and effort.
Also, as a San Juaneño, we have a new policy under the San Juan City Environmental Code which is the “No Segregation, No Collection” policy. This is one of the latest policies which is strictly implemented in our city, together with the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO), since November 2020. They are also very particular with the disposal of these so-called “COVID WASTES”.
I am eagerly promoting this advocacy by targeting each household to segregate not only the biodegradable, recyclable and non-recyclable, but also segregate the used tissues, face masks and latex gloves that we have been using daily to fight off the coronavirus. This can positively have a domino effect (may it be to the youth or even to their workplaces or businesses), which can help us prevent the spread of COVID that kills millions of people worldwide and also protect the marine life. By doing so, even in our simplest ways, we can help save our environment, our only home, our Mother Earth.