Fashionably with purpose

Images captured by PHILDIZ Photo Gallery ( 

Being a gentleman, this columnist appreciates (and loves) beautiful women. When invited, it’s always a privilege to be their ever-loyal esquire (with the consent of their “powerful” better halves of course). Indeed, I consider myself very lucky to be in their presence during parties and high profile events.  

As such, through the years, I have become more mindful on what truly excites me whenever I meet their acquaintance. In a culture obsessed with beauty, I am now more aware of what sets a real woman (distinctly) apart from the rest. In my personal experience, such women (some of whom you will see in this Sunday’s column) have beauty that transcends the ordinary. 

Establishing her mark in the world arena, Ann Ong, one of the awardees for 2015 Best Dressed Women of the Philippines, is the epitome of a determined woman.;
Dr. Elsie Badillo-Pascua, beauty and intelligence personified; 2015 Best Dressed Women of the Philippines awardee.
Dr. Hazel Paragua-Zuellig, 2015 Best Dressed Women of the Philippines awardee, was elegant on the catwalk.;
2015 Best Dressed Women of the Philippines awardee Joy Wambangco Rustia.

Just recently, I became witness to the biggest and (by far) the most attended charity gala held at the Rizal Ballroom of Makati Shangri-La. This year marks the 12th year of the Best Dressed Women of the Philippines (BDWP) – an annual fundraising event that has raised millions of pesos to support the Philippine Cancer Society’s programs to fight cancer.  

The aforementioned beneficiary focuses its efforts on three primary advocacies: cancer prevention and early detection; statistical research; and focused patient services. PCS provides vital information to the public and assists in the diagnostic, therapeutic and holistic care of indigent patients. And as part of their education and information efforts, they have also deployed mobile clinics that provide prostate, breast and cervical examinations to these patients.  

Selection and Organizing Committee member of the Best Dressed Women of the Philippines, Marian Ong-Nuguid;
Successful “Beautiprenuer” Nikki Tang, 2015 Ambassador for Life.;
2015 Ambassador for Life Agile Zamora.;
For the love of fashion and charity, Serla Russell enjoys her moment.
2014 Best Dressed Women awardee Kim Haw, was so chic during the ball.;
2015 Ambassador for Life Carol Mercado was a vision of elegance.;
Shelly Lazaro was stunning that evening.;
Consul Agnes Huibonhua of Gambia was stunning in her red ensemble.

“We salute the noble and philanthropic men and women behind Best Dressed Women of the Philippines. Because of BDWP, we are now able to embark on a new project to provide a PCS mobile clinic that can go to low-resource communities and screen for breast and cervical cancers, which are the two most common cancers in Filipino women,” said Roberto M. Paterno, chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Philippine Cancer Society.

He added, “We are confident that their compassion for the cancer-stricken will bring hope and a renewed lease of life to our underprivileged countrymen.”

Through the leadership of Honorary Consul of Angola, Helen Ong, along with the selection and organizing committee, they have chosen women who exemplify the qualities of a true lady.  A lady that exudes humility, kindness of heart and drive to excel in her chosen field. Most importantly, a whole-hearted generosity for the less fortunate.

Ladies with generous hearts for charity – Princess Violago-Dee, Elaine Rojas-Villar, Marian Ong-Nuguid, Consul Helen Ong, Eni Alba, Sandie Poblador, Dr. Elise Badillo-Pascua and Tina Jacinto.
2015 Best Dressed Awardee, Anna Moncupa, captivates in gold.;
Fashionable ladies who support the Philippine Cancer Society’s projects for the less fortunate – Connie Haw, Consul Helen Ong and Salome Uy.

“This year’s women of substance were chosen out of the same mold: beauty, style and kind hearts. These women are leading lives worthy of merit on the personal, professional and civic front,” expressed Angola Consul Helen Ong, the indefatigable event chairperson. 

I reckon, what truly defines beauty? With an ever-expanding definition of what a beautiful woman really is, for this columnist, it is the light that shines in her generous and selfless heart.

In the case of Best Dressed Women of the Philippines and its awardees, they fashionably do it in style and with a great deal of purpose to raise funds for the cancer-stricken and marginalized.  

Sheree Chua and Cristina Gomez are beautiful inside and out.;
Fashionably with purpose – Anna Sia was dramatic in Ito Curata haute couture, 2015 Best Dressed Women of the Philippines awardee.
2015 Ambassador for Life Virginia Lane at the fashion catwalk.;
Grace Glory Go, Linda Ley and Manolyne Taylor in full support of the Philippine Cancer Society.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is a valid reason to celebrate a fashion moment.  After all, we all exist on borrowed time. Life is fleeting, so walk the catwalk and have a ball! 

Follow me on Twitter or Instagram @francis_deleon8. 


Topics: Fashion
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