Manila, Philippines – WHAT MATTERS MOST – Ruffa Gutierrez celebrated her birthday last June with family, friends, colleagues and, more important, the beneficiaries of her advocacy. Women and children who need protection, love and care, and shelter.
Ruffa GutierrezShe looked back with fondness, at times with sadness, at her life. A life that has its share of peaks and valleys. Ruffa embraced all of them, saying she can’t erase her past. What matters most is she looks at the future with optimism and confidence, vowing to continue being of help to her fellowmen.
In time, Ruffa hopes to host a television show – not gossip – but public service, which will showcase her compassionate heart and broad, sharp mind.
Why not call of it “Lady of Substance”? Ruffa Gutierrez is one, after all.
BEHIND THE GLITZ – Her ever friendly and effective PR, Jun Lalin, provides Highspeed with this update on Ruffa’s activities.
Having been exposed to the limelight at such a young age, Ruffa Gutierrez has portrayed many roles: model, host, actress, beauty queen, celebrity daughter. But while she’s one thing to every person, it’s her uncredited role that deserves most recognition. Because behind that spotlight and beneath the glitz and the glamor, is a woman who, quite simply, wants to help people – and in the way she knows how.
“The world of entertainment has been very good to me. I owe much of what I am today to it, but more to those in the industry who have helped me along the way and to the countless, faceless people, young and old, who patronized my body of work.”
These words may have been expressed almost 15 years ago, when Ruffa first founded the ROOF-A-CHILD Foundation in 1998, but the sentiments have not gone stale. After all, like the beauty queen’s ageless appeal, charity never goes out of style. In fact, becoming a mother to two beautiful daughters, Lorin and Venice, only reinforced her desire to uplift lives – especially of the young – and strengthened her motivation to give back to those who have thrown her support over the years.
For her birthday, Ruffa gave the biggest blowout ever. She and her friends (including BB Gandanghari, Phoemela Barranda, Cristalle Belo, and her daughters) helped build five houses for Habitat for Humanity. And, more determined than ever, Ruffa is also set to revive her ROOF-A-CHILD Foundation – only this time it’s bigger and better.
ROOF-A-CHILD is a project that provides shelter for disadvantaged kids coming from abusive homes, abandoned by their parents, or afflicted with disabilities. Apart from its literal denotation, ROOF-A-CHILD aims to equip the youth with the tools they need for holistic development through educational, athletic, and cultural means. It also organizes feeding programs and medical missions. On the grander scheme, this non-profit foundation intends to promote economic independence in impoverished communities by providing livelihood programs and cooperative projects, thus ensuring a flourished, more stable life. Ruffa’s passion for the cause was so evident that at one point she turned down a chance to host MTV show to dedicate more time with her brainchild, which she deemed far important.
BACK FOR GOOD – Ruffa admits she lost focus when she moved away after getting married. “Now that I’m back for good, I’ll be even more focused on projects for ROOF-A-CHILD,” she says. “I’m re-launching the foundation because after getting married and making a comeback, I wanted a fresh new start. New projects, new logo, new thrust for the foundation.” For now, Ruffa plans to use her influence for good: to establish partnerships with non-stock organizations to build homes. “I would like to use my celebrity status in making a difference in people’s lives.”
In line with her renewed vision, the star is also bringing something else from the ’90s back: Her own website. “I was one of the first few celebrities that had my own website online way back in 1998,” she says, recalling that Alice Dixson’s husband was webmaster. Ruffa’s “Crazy, Sexy, Cool” page, however, fell into disuse two years ago due to her hectic schedule. She resorted to the more succinct 140-character Twitter to relay information
But now, understanding the potential of the online medium, especially for her newly re-opened socio-ethical mission, Ruffa is opening a new, hip site of her own (www.iloveruffag.com). “It’s important to have web presence. Social media and the Internet have totally change the world and how we communicate,” she says. The page, which exudes Ruffa’s familiar sophisticated-yet-sweet charm, is a chic contrast of sexy chocolate brown and girly pink. Expect to see Ruffa’s biography, personal and professional photos from shoots, Instagram, vacations; filmography; videos; Twitter feed; blog; and more. And, despite numerous fan pages on Facebook, Ruffa is set to launch an official fan page. A Ruffa app is also in progress. “Soon I will also be blogging and have a means to communicate with my fans,” she says excitedly.
Ruffa’s birthday bash culminate in a grand Fire and Ice themed celebration, inspired by Robert Frost’s eponymous poem. But though her birthday is over, it’s still only the beginning of Ruffa’s rediscovery and fresh start. She doesn’t get older. Really, she just gets better.
Official Website: http://www.iloveruffag.com
Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/iloveruffag