Marilou Tolico has announced the staging of an international event dubbed Pageant Congress in 2021 which aims at developing and nurturing character formation.
Tolico made the special announcement during a Zoom conference with some of the participants in the forthcoming event.
"The Pageant Congress is different from Beauty Pageant. This is a five-day gathering where women leaders will present their advocacies relevant to character formation," Tolico said, during an exclusive interview in Quezon City recently.
Helping Tolico organized the international event is the Universe and World's Finest Woman organization which he also created. This is the first time that a Pageant Congress would be held worldwide, she said.
"These days we are encountering suicidal cases and issues concerning mental wellness. Pabata ng pabata ang mga suicidal cases and those involve sa dometic violence. When we say domestic violence, hindi lang ito away ng husband and wife. Problems din ito ng family like siblings. Quarelling destroys the character. So we need character formation," the former beauty queen added.
Tolico, 43, said that the pageant is a perfect platform in pursuing character formation advocacy. "The core objective of a pageant is goodwill. We should always remember the essence of a beauty pageant. It is not just business: it's the formation of women nurturing the young and the young at heart. We as women nurture. That's the dream I have. When I represented the Philippines twice during pageants abroad, I made sure I represented the Philippines well."
To join the Pageant Congress, participants should have leadership, Tolico said.
"One qualification is leadership. She could be married or single. She should have led an organization or company for five years. Puwede rin siyang title holder," she said.
The Pageant Congress tentatively scheduled from Nov. 8-18, 2021 will kick-off with the Asia's Finest Women contest. The event she added will highlight the vital role of Asian women in character formation.
"Many times Asian women are tagged as Third World. But I want others to know that Asian women are strong-willed. I want to gather these women so that we can help one another. The pageant is the No. 1 platform to gather the beautiful women who can lead. I mean they can be beautiful inside and out," Tolico added.
Born in Cebu City, Tolico is the eldest in her family. She got married at an early age and now a mom to four children. She hopes to pass on her strength to her kids so that they can continue her legacy/
Known to her friend as "Lot," Tolico is a champion of women's rights and empowering women. She represented the Philippines in Mrs. Universe 2017 pageant in Durban, South Africa and Mrs. World 2017 also in South Africa.
Tolico is the founder/chairwoman of Philippine Honorable Queens, an organization which aims to recognize the role of the Filipino women in the society, giving recognition and awards to those who excel in their chosen field that touches the lives of many Filipinos.
In 2018, she started to rebrand the Mrs Universe Philippines Finest Woman by choosing not only the beautiful ones but those who can inspire and lead the community.