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NGO runs street, online campaign to spread the dangers of Asbestos

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Street artists from the South gathered on Saturday, May 28, 2011 at the Brgy. Sun Valley Covered Gym, State Avenue Sun Valley Subdivision, Parañaque City to compete for the Third Location Battle of the Asbestos Street Fighters. Ten Graffiti Crews, composed of three members each, worked from 10am to 4pm to best interpret the competition theme “Asbestos Kills People”. The project is an initiative by the Institute for Occupational Health and Safety Development ( in cooperation with Support Your Local Visionaries (SYLV) with support from Australian People for Health, Education and Development Abroad (APHEDA), International Ban Asbestos Secretariat (IBAS), Asia Ban Asbestos Network (A-BAN) and Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO).

“The high level of skills possessed by the competing Crews in each of the location battles allowed them to show a different take on the issue of the dangers of Asbestos on human health,” said Noel Colina, Executive Director of IOHSAD. “Our belief in the dynamism of street art have been proven again and again by the participants.” The location battles in Manila, Marikina, Paranaque, Quezon City and Mandaue City are the preliminary leg for the graffiti competition. In each of the five location battles, two Crews will move on to the Finals. The winner of the Final round will go to Taiwan to represent the Philippines in the Asian Wall Lords 2011.

According to Colina, aside from street art, social media is also leveraged to highlight the dangers of Asbestos. “Street art pieces can vanished in a blink of an eye but by posting them online, we can extend its life and allow more people to stare and appreciate the work. For the competition, all the graffiti pieces are uploaded on the and shared via Facebook, Twitter and multitudes of mailing lists. We're also trying to spread the information via blogs, Facebook and Twitter to reach the users of those platforms.”

The competition will also run the Peoples Choice Award (PCA) which will allow people to vote online for their favorite graffiti piece from June 27 – July 12, 2011. “We want the contestants to run their own online campaign to get the most votes for their entries. This amplifies our own efforts to go viral on the message 'Asbestos Kills people' and let us to reach the most number of individuals,” ended Colina.