Miss ALABEL, Sarangani Province

MERHYL KIT PARALUMAN

Age: 20
Height: 5 feet 6 inches
Measurements: 32 inches - 24 inches - 36 inches
Occupation/Education: BS Chemistry Student

Describe your childhood/growing up years (8-13 years old):
I had a very fun and exciting childhood. Growing up in an extended family and being the first grandchild, I was always showered with love and attention, I never really felt alone for once, that made me feel blessed, thankful and content in life. In the summer, my grandmother used to bring me to the farm, that’s where I got my free-spirited and adventurous self. I love the countryside, riding carabaos, planting rice, playing in mud and climbing trees. During school days, my grandfather was the one who took me to and from the school, he works at a fishing company, so, after my classes I usually spend my time along the beach. Sometimes, he would also take me to fish ports and ship docks. I am very close with my grandparents and they really played a huge role in making my childhood memorable.

What lessons did you learn from your childhood/growing years?
There are many lessons from my childhood/growing years that are memorable to me. One of which is to “Never rush things”. I can say that I was privileged growing up and sometimes I think that I can already do things that I want and on my own, but that is not how life works. I need to enjoy every moment because time is one thing that we can never bring back. Everything has its own time and place, rushing things will just be a regrettable decision. Until today, I bring this lesson with me, taking one step at a time and let things work in its own pace.

Most memorable moment:
My most memorable moment and probably the most life changing decision I’ve ever made was when I decided to pursue my college degree in Iligan City. It’s a 200 mile drive away from my hometown. Growing up with very strict parents, I was always in my comfort zone and it was my first time to leave my home for a long time. I have learned to become independent, look after myself, and develop a sense of responsibility.

Why do you want to be Miss Philippines Earth?
I see Miss Philippines Earth as a platform in amplifying my cause, which is to talk more about the environmental problems that we are facing today, and to be able to have a voice on topics such as Sustainable fishing and Marine wildlife protection. The Philippines is surrounded by bodies of water and many of our countrymen depend on fishing as a livelihood. The rise of environmental problems would greatly affect our seas because most of our waste goes into the bodies of water that we have. Coming from a coastal province, I would like to fight for this cause, not for the prestige and the title, but for the protection of the livelihood of people in my province.

What is your environmental advocacy and why did you choose this?
Global warming has greatly affected our planet in many ways. The heat index is rising which causes the melting of glaciers, and the rise of water levels. One thing we didn’t know is the ocean absorbs ¼ of the carbon dioxide we emit, which causes the decrease of oxygen in the water making it more acidic. This would lead to hypoxia, when waters become hypoxic they are unable to support most aquatic life which leads to dead zones. This is negatively affecting our marine ecosystem, which could also affect the livelihood of our fishermen, as well as our daily living as most of us resort to seafood as our main food source.

As a chemistry student and from a coastal province, I felt that I needed to act upon this problem, and so I am here advocating for Sustainable fishing and protection of the Marine wildlife. A comprehensive action to promote awareness and create sustainable plans beneficial for the fishing industry and marine wildlife. It is an advocacy that aims to balance economic growth and environmental protection – supporting the livelihood of our local fishermen while ensuring the safety of Marine wildlife.


What tip can you share to promote eco-tourism in your City or Municipality?
The best way to promote eco-tourism in my Municipality is to Go Green, such as reducing carbon footprints, proper waste segregation, planting more trees, and spreading awareness. The local government unit could also invest more on development and research that aims to protect the environment. Having a clean and progressive Municipality can improve the lives of the people as well as boost the tourism industry.