Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) recently led 1,900 volunteers spread across 35 locations nationwide for its very first “Start Your Impossible National Coastal Cleanup and Mangrove Planting” weekend.
Held in partnership with TMP’s dealership network, NGO and LGU partners plus various coastal communities all over the Philippines, the volunteers were able to plant 40,000 mangrove propagules and collect 1,200 sacks of waste by the end of the activity.
“With each and every volunteer cleaning up the coasts and planting mangrove seedlings, all spread out across 35 locations nationwide, we are indeed starting our impossible, one place at a time. If we continue doing these small acts for our environment, soon our big vision of building sustainable communities will become possible,” said TMP president Satoru Suzuki during the opening program at Lian Mangrove Park, in Batangas.
The coastal cleanup and mangrove planting activity is part of the company’s “Start Your Impossible” initiative, which is Toyota’s global movement that enables and empowers people to move past challenges and defy limits in order to reach their goals and make a difference in society.
In the Philippines, Toyota’s Start Your Impossible movement is inspired by Filipino champion para athlete Ernie Gawilan who, as someone who grew up and honed his swimming skills in a coastal community in Davao, has been advocating for cleaner oceans. Gawilan, together with fellow para athlete Edwin Villanueva and his team from the Philippine Paralympic Committee joined the coastal cleanup and mangrove planting activity in Batangas.
With this event, TMP is helping Gawilan bring his advocacy all over the county. TMP mobilized its employees and dealership network to conduct cleanups and mangrove planting in coastal areas of Metro Manila and the following provinces: Batangas, Bulacan, Rizal, La Union, Pangasinan, Zambales, Bataan, Ilocos Norte, Camarines Sur, Albay, Mindoro, Negros Oriental, Samar, Bohol, Cebu, Bukidnon, Davao, Agusan del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur, Misamis Oriental, Lanao Del Norte, South Cotabato.
“Wag po tayong magsawang tulungan yung mundo natin (Let’s not tire of helping our planet),” said Ernie Gawilan. “Maraming salamat kasi may mga tao pang nagpapahalaga sa kalikasan (I’m grateful that there are still so many people who value Mother Nature).”
This is just one of TMP’s Start Your Impossible initiatives. Locally launched last November during the Toyota Classics, TMP has accomplished numerous projects under Start Your Impossible.
To support the country’s paralympic athletes, the proceeds of the aforementioned classical benefit concert was donated to Filipino Para-Athletes through the Philippine Paralympic Committee (PPC) for their training requirements such as sports wheelchairs. TMP also donated a 29-seater coaster which was turned over last January to help the PPC and para-athletes’ mobility and transportation requirements.
Last May, TMP started a 10-day swim clinic that aims to encourage aspiring swimmers aged six to 14 to take the first step in their athletic journey, and pursue their interest in swimming.
TMP is looking forward to more programs and projects – be it in the area of environmental protection, sports and youth development, and overall sustainable mobility – to encourage more Filipinos to start their own impossible.