The “new normal” is a phrase often heard nowadays ever since the pandemic broke out. Wearing a mask when going outside and practicing social distancing are just some of the rules that need to be followed now. Despite this, it’s inspiring to see people think of ways to keep themselves occupied while on quarantine.
Since movements are now restricted, some are trying to ignite their creativity by going back to doing their past hobbies, while others are discovering their passion for a new one. Just one click on the Instagram app and it is guaranteed that there is a person or two trying out watercolor painting for the first time or learning an instrument or maybe repurposing their old clothes and finding a home for their newly created wardrobe. Some even turn their hobbies into a business to earn some extra cash. At the end of the day, everyone just wants to do something productive and something to distract them from the chaos and the uncertainty of the pandemic.
While some resort to bringing out their inner artist, others are experimenting more with food and how they can put together a decent yet tasty meal with what they have in their fridge. This is because of the supply shortage that happened when the lockdown started. But this also birthed the interest of many to plant their own produce at home. Not only do you get that farm-to-table experience but planting also helps reduce stress and anxiety by bringing a sense of tranquility.
Resiliency amidst the ‘new normal’
To be able to engage and unite the community, ARC Refreshment Corporation launched its new advocacy program dubbed as “Tulay ng Pangarap”. This is a long-term program that demonstrates the company’s resiliency amidst the new normal. In line with this is the kickoff of the “My Gulay Garden” project, which aims to promote gardening and sustainability by encouraging their consumers to reuse their colorful RC Cola PET bottles as plant pots for the fruits, vegetables, and herbs that they want to grow in their own space here in the metro.
This advocacy is close to the hearts of ARC employees as they were the ones who initiated it, and the management conducted digital trainings about proper recycling for their urban gardening project. ARC is a company that practices what they preach, so this initiative was expanded to all their plants across the entire Philippines.
Urban gardening as a family activity
Building a garden in an urban area is certainly not a walk in the park, let alone keeping plants alive, so why not make it a family activity and bond with your loved ones at the same time? Encourage the younger siblings to join in on the fun – brainstorm on what the household usually consumes, from veggies like pechay, mustard, tomatoes to herbs like peppermint, tarragon and basil. Once that’s all set, instead of buying new pots for the plant babies, go for the more environment-friendly route and repurpose some of your RC Cola PET bottles. Make the backyard aesthetically pleasing by lining up an array of colored bottles and share them on social media. Not only is it Instagram-worthy but it also sets an example to be more sustainable and to grow your own produce to help achieve food security.
Certainty in uncertain times
The pandemic has definitely challenged the whole world, but programs like ARC’s “Tulay ng Pangarap” continue to empower the community amidst the new normal. Even though everything is uncertain at this point, these initiatives bring hope to the people by educating and encouraging them to do these small projects that will not only help them now but also in the future that’s still ahead.