by Nickie Wang
Presidential nephew James Aquino Yap, Jr. , May Bukas Pa and Noah star Zaijian Jaranilla and GMA-7 child wonder Jillian Ward were all voted by more than 12,000 students from 34 schools all throughout the country as their Favorite Child Personalities.
The awards to the three youngsters were handed to them in a ceremony on Dec. 28 at the Rajah Sulayman Theater, Fort Santiago in Intramuros, Manila.
James Yap and Kris Aquino were present at the event to support their child’s first recognition of such value.
When the young James’ name was called, the tot couldn’t hide his excitement and jumped for joy as he climbed the stage by himself.
“Thank you NCC,” was his quick speech and ran to the arms of his mother. Kris and James came up on the stage to give an acceptance speech on behalf of their son.
“I campaigned for my father when I was six [years old], but Bimby did the same thing for Noynoy when he’s half my age. He’s only three. We promise that we will raise him to be a good role model,” said Kris. “I believe his father has something to say,” Kris pointed the microphone to cager James to say something about the citation given to their child.
“Maraming salamat NCCT,” was his quick response and Bimby butted in saying the complete acronym of the National Council for Children’s Television.
Before the estranged couple and their son went down the stage, Kris added that other awardee Zaijian will soon have a project with her.
“I know magagalit ang ABS [CBN] but I’m excited to tell you all that Zaijian and I will soon have a project together. And by the way, this is the first time I saw Jillian. You are so cute pala. Bimby wants to have pictures with you and Zaijian.”
And that’s how she stole the whole scene, while the other awardees were being called up on the stage, photographers and cameramen were all focused on the area where Kris, James, and the three youngsters were seated. Imagine how unpopular awardees had to bear delivering their acceptance speeches while the attention of almost everybody was with the celebrities. That’s what we call star presence.
The NCCT, the same institution behind the Anak TV Awards, recognized child-friendly television shows, institutions and personalities with the first-ever Lingkod TV Awards. According to NCCT executive director Frank Rivera, the council, together with the Department of Education, believes that it is high time to reward prominent figures and programs in the television industry that showcase strong advocacy in promoting the rights and importance of a child.
“Through these citations, the government expresses our gratitude for their commitment and unparalleled contributions in changing the face of Philippine television—free from inanities, cultural decay, and violence, little by little,” Rivera said.
The NCCT conducted an informal survey during its series of media caravan all over the country and came up with a roster of awardees. Apart from Bimby, Zaijian, and Jillian, 39 other names were recognized during the special event.
Among the personalities that were conferred with special recognitions were: Vilma Santos and Dolphy (Lifetime Achievement Award); Sarah Geronimo and Chris Tiu (Favorite Youth Personality); Aga and Charlene Muhlach (Favorite Parent Personality); and KC Concepcion (Most Inspiring TV Personality).
The NCCT also recognized the following: Wansapanataym and Noah (Most Child-Friendly Shows); ABS-CBN’s Matanglawin and Net 25’s MOMents (Most Child-Friendly Educational Shows); and GMA-7’s Bantatay and Wish Ko Lang (Most Entertaining Child-Friendly Show and Most Child-Friendly Educational Show, respectively).
The Richard Gutierrez narrated documentaries on contemporary environmental issues affecting the country and the world—Signos, Full Force of Nature, Planet Philippines, and Wildlife for Sale—were cited Most Informative Child-Friendly Documentaries.
Special citations were also handed out to the music video on national anthem produced by GMA-7 and SM Cinemas and the foundations namely Bantay Bata 163, Anak TV Foundation, GMA Kapuso Foundation, Museo Pambata, United Nations Children’s Fund Philippines and Diether Ocampo’s K.I.D.S. Foundation.
Jillian, 2010’s breakthrough artist
According to Juicy!, TV 5’s showbiz-oriented program, Jillian Ward is this year’s breakthrough artist. The five-year-old star topped the survey that also included Vice Ganda, Rocco Nacino, Kean Cipriano and Andi Eigenmann.
She is considered the front-runner because of the number of projects she did for the year 2010 alone.
Jillian first appeared in a commercial for a milk product. Before she was introduced in GMA network’s recent TV remake of the classic film Trudis Liit, she had played the role of Daldakina in the fantasy drama that starred Aljur Abrenica and Kris Bernal, The Last Prince.
In 2010, Jillian appeared and starred on 10 different shows and series like Jillian: Namamasko Po, Pepito Manaloto , Ilumina, Pilyang Kerubin, Diva, Unang Hirit, Wachamakulit, and Eat Bulaga. This year, she will be part of the highly-anticipated television adaptation of the graphic novel, Captain Barbell, which first aired in 2006.