Former Philippine Vice President Leni Robredo has been selected as one of the Rockefeller Foundation’s fellows for its prestigious Bellagio Center Residency Program.
The four-week program offers academics, artists, policymakers, and practitioners an opportunity to unlock their creativity and advance groundbreaking work through the completion of a specific project in a residential group setting.
This week, Robredo flew to Bellagio, Italy, home of the Villa Serbelloni, where she will work on her book about her journey as Vice President.
The book will highlight Robredo’s belief that a vibrant and empowered civil society is the antidote to the challenges posed by modern autocracy.
During her term as 14th Vice President of the Philippines, Robredo launched her flagship program Angat Buhay which provided interventions on education, health, nutrition, food security, rural development, women empowerment, and housing through private-public partnerships.
Angat Buhay made the most impact at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, standing at the forefront of the response operations by providing needed assistance to health workers and other frontliners, communities, and underprivileged Filipinos.
When her term ended, Robredo turned Angat Buhay into a volunteer-driven organization as she aims to uplift more Filipino lives.
Established in 1913, the Rockefeller Foundation promotes the well-being of people around the world by breaking down barriers and finding solutions to advance opportunity and reverse the climate crisis. It has also helped transform the world’s public health, agriculture, and renewable energy systems.
The Bellagio Center Residency Program’s more than 5,000 alumni include 102 Nobel laureates, the late US Supreme Court associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, poet and civil rights activist Maya Angelou, former Deputy Chief Justice of South Africa Dikgang Moseneke, American investigative journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, Nigerian film director, writer, and actor Akin Omotoso, and Somali-Canadian social activist Ilwad Elman.