Self-worth is a powerful determinant of one’s quality of life. It is the self-perception of one’s right to achieve happiness and be given respect, of one’s ability to understand and solve problems, and to triumph in the small and big challenges of life.
LoveYourself believes that self-worth is key to building an empowered community. We exist to ignite in each one an active desire for a healthy and vibrant self-worth, especially among the youth and males who have sex with males (MSMs).
Through awareness, education, counseling, fun social interactions, and activities that weave these elements into a unity, we take delight in spreading our message of the value of self-worth and the critical importance of loving oneself.
LoveYourself is the brainchild of Ten Outstanding Young Man of the Philippines (Youth Leadership) and Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World Awardee (Humanitarian Leadership), Ronivin (Vinn) Garcia Pagtakhan.
He was joined by friends who were inspired by the increasing demand and queries by the Youth & LGBT-MSM through social media such as Twitter on STI, HIV, sexuality and gender. Since 2011, LoveYourself exponentially grew through social networking. With the able support of a core group of concerned and socially aware youth & LGBT-MSM professionals and supporters with diverse ideas and preferences, the membership has now grown to almost 1,100 volunteers from all sectors of society.
By empowering oneself, enriching relationships, and embracing innovations, we provide a safe space for communities and champion the iniingatan, inaalagaan, at inaasikaso experience.
A thought leader that inspires people to empower and affirm their self-worth to create ripples of positive change.
LoveYourself Inc (for the Youth & LGBT-MSM) is a community of volunteers that aim to reach out to others to propagate ideas, attitudes, and practices that encourage loving oneself — to DARE to be oneself, to CARE for oneself, and to SHARE oneself as a way to multiply joy.
Dare to be one’s self. Dare to deep dive into one’s self, and enhance self awareness. You cannot love someone that you do not know. By knowing yourself truly, madly, and deeply.
Care for one’s self. Care to actively pursue tending one’s needs and wants. By caring for ourselves, we enhance the natural well-being that we are blessed with. It allows us to enjoy both the little and big things that life has to offer. It let us experience the things that make us joyful and feel good about ourselves. Also, caring leads us to avoid anything that harms our natural well-being constantly mindful of our personal security and safety.
Share one’s self. “Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow.” When you love yourself, your life will become full of joy. In turn, you will be able to share your time and talents with others. You will also be surrounded by other generous souls who also give themselves to others. Sharing one’s self can be a route back to joy, especially if you are experiencing fear and a troubled situation. When you love yourself, you will engage a trusted partner or friend so you can together look that fear in the eye and blast it to pieces with love.
In July 2011, Ronivin Pagtakhan founded LoveYourself. Under his wing, LoveYourself received several accolades:
- Elected as the Chairman of ISEAN (Insular SouthEast Asian Network of Male Reproductive Health)
- Sub Recipient of the AFAO via Global Fund for SKPA (Sustainability of HIV Services for Key Population in Asia)
- Sub Recipient of the Save the Children via Global Fund Philippines NFR (CBO Development Program) 2018 – present – Establishing Community Centers for HIV prevention and Treatment all over the Philippines
- Granted as recipient of AmFar via WHO for Project Preppy (pilot study of Pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV in the Philippines (2017)
- Recipient of Save the Children via Global Fund Philippines NFM (Condom Promotion Program) 2017-2019
- Granted as Sub-sub-recipient of HIV Prevention Program: 3S Project (Global Fund – HIV Component Philippines) 2014
- TAYO Awards (Ten Outstanding Youth Organizations in the Philippines) (December 2013)
- Top Choice Awards: Top Advocacy of the Philippines (MEG Magazine December 2012)
- PR Accolades
#StayNegatHIVe Campaign in partnership with Rappler and Dentsu Jayme Styfu (2016)
- Boomerang Awards
- Araw Values Award
- The Warc Prize for Asian Strategy
- Effie Awards (Bronze)
- Kidlat Award (Bronze)
- LoveYourself Philippine Business Sector Response to HIV/AIDS with Pilipinas Shell Foundation Inc. 52ndAnvil Awards (Silver)
- Council Member Makati City and Taguig City Local AIDS Council
- Official Advocacy Arm of the Philippine Business Sector Response to HIV
- Catered HIV workplace policy advocacy and trainings to 114 companies
- 2019 Catered to 65,000 client for HIV/STI testing, assisted 3542 HIV clients for treatment, 2.5 million website views of www.loveyourself.ph
Vinn is a registered nurse in the Philippines and US. He is a graduate of the University of the Philippines Manila, where he took his BS Nursing degree with honors, and PWU for his Masters in Nursing and Doctor of Philosophy in Education.
He has been an educator since he was 19, and is a faculty member of Mapua Institute of Technology, Centro Escolar University, UP core-group review CENE LEARN and other national nursing board review centers around the Philippines. He was among the topnotchers for the nursing board exam in 2004 and a university scholar. He has been active in socio-civic activities since his college days where he was part of the UP USC (student council). He co-authored a book entitled National Board Exam Review Notes by CENE publishing.
In 2011, he was recognized in the 2011 Social Media Oscars – TwitterShorty Awards as the Nurse of the Year (@twitrnurse), the first Filipino to win the said international awards. Also, in the same year, he was recognized as one of the MAPUA’s most outstanding professors.
In 2016, he was chosen as the Chairman of ISEAN (Insular SouthEast Asian Network of Male Reproductive Health)
In 2017, he was added to the roster of Tatler-Generation T Leaders. He was also awarded by the University of the Philippines Manila College of Nursing as an Outstanding Alumnus for Community Service.