MANILA, Philippines – Google marked the 120th birth anniversary of Josefa Llanes Escoda with a doodle on its homepage, Thursday, September 20.
Escoda was born on this day in 1898, the eldest of 7 children, and one of Philippine history’s most important figures in women’s issues. She was the founder of Boys Town in Manila for underprivileged youth in 1937 and founded the Girl Scouts of the Philippines in 1940, making a mark on the lives of young Filipinos.
Escoda also advocated tirelessly for women’s suffrage, working to ensure that all Filipino citizens got to participate in the voting process.
Escoda is also commemorated on the P1,000 bill, and through a monument dedicated to her. The Girl Scouts of the Philippines pay tribute to their founder annually with acts of service, and a Girl Scout Week celebration coinciding with her birthday.
The doodle is designed to illustrate the essence of Escoda’s life work: girl scouts exploring with Escoda, who is guiding them to the right path. Google said this is “a close portrayal of how Escoda led young Filipinas towards preparing for their responsibilities to the nation and to the world community.”
Escoda is also shown wearing a shawl similar to the iconic Girl Scout scarf.
One famous excerpt involves Escoda braving bad weather just to make it to class in her elementary school in Dingras in Ilocos Norte, her hometown in the Philippines. “I’ll not let the weather keep me away from school,” she told her mother. She later graduated as valedictorian, went on to join the Red Cross and win a scholarship in the United States, where she studied social work. She earned a masters degree from Columbia University.
Visitors may know more about the life of Escoda by clicking the doodle on google.com.ph.
In the Philippines, Google has also created doodles for Filipino artists Levi Celerio and Francisco Balagtas. One of its most recent doodles highlighted the rich marine life of Philippine seas to mark the country’s 120th Independence Day. – Rappler.com
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