#MoveDumaguete: Social media for social change
DUMAGUETE CITY, Philippines - In the early morning of December 17, 2011, Dumaguete was awakened by roaring floodwaters that surged through the streets of the city after a heavy downpour caused by Tropical Storm Sendong.
Authorities claimed it was the worst flashflood that ravaged Dumaguete and other areas of Negros Oriental in about 10 years, affecting 12,260 families or 61,300 people.
At least 4,345 houses were reported destroyed. The estimated damage reportedly reached nearly P700 million in infrastructure and P41 million in agriculture.
A videographer named Mark Anthony Besario captured the rare jaw-dropping images of fear and destruction in Dumaguete at the height of the storm.
He shared the video that became viral on Youtube and Facebook: A child weeps on top of a roof as he watches the raging waters bear down on a street, sweeping away a crumbling shanty.
Negros Oriental did not gain much media attention after the devastating storm hit the city. But social media helped in addressing the plight of the typhoon victims in this part of Central Visayas, giving them hope to rebuild their province "where the sun rises, where each Negros day begins."
Experiences of citizen journalists like Mark Anthony -- which demonstrate how social media can push compelling stories and move people to action -- inspired Rappler.com's chat series dubbed "Social Media for Social Change."
The chat series -- previously held in Baguio, Davao, Manila, Naga, Cagayan de Oro, Zamboanga, Los Baños - are organized by Move.PH, Rappler's citizen journalism arm.
Rappler consists of journalists committed to informing Filipinos and inspiring them to interact and participate in nation-building by providing a credible, creative, and interactive platform through social media.
Dumaguete is the next stop of Rappler's Move.PH Chat Series.
Silliman University, through its College of Mass Communication, is co-sponsoring the event titled “Pushing Environmental Journalism Forward” on Friday, November 16, from 12:30 pm to 5:00 pm at the Silliman Hall.
A leading academic institution in the region, CMC-SU trains "mass communicators who will contribute to national development by advocating a culture of peace, justice and responsible stewardship of the environment."
Rappler CEO and executive editor Maria Ressa will headline the event with her keynote address about the power of social media and how it can bring about social change.
Dr Ben S. Malayang III, President of Silliman University, will discuss the practice and prospects of environmental journalism.
Veteran journalist and Rappler's citizen journalism director Chay Hofileña will tackle the changing face of journalism in the digital age.
Rappler social media head Michael Josh Villanueva will discuss how to use social media platforms to push issues about the environment.
Finally, Patricia Evangelista, one of Rappler's multimedia reporters, will talk about the importance of telling compelling stories of people.
The Dumaguete leg of the chat series is sponsored by Smart Communications and co-organized by Silliman University and its College of Mass Communication.