KapaligiRUN2 slated on July 14

THOUSANDS of runners are expected to participate in KapaligiRUN2, the second staging of the environmental advocacy run for Mt. Makiling Forest Reserve (MFR), on July 14, Saturday.

Registration, now ongoing, will also begin on July 14 at 4: 30 am at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) Baker Hall.  The runners will then assemble for the actual run at the same venue at 5: 30 am.  Gun start will be at exactly 6 am.

Interested parties may please register online at www.oar.uplb.edu.ph.

Now on its second year, KapaligiRUN aims to generate awareness and mobilize local government units (LGUs), along with other stakeholders around the MFR to harness opportunities for ecotourism development while protecting this country’s ecological wonder and watershed.

The 4244-ha MFR is a natural tropical forest and a biodiversity hotspot teeming with thousands of plant species, including more woody plant species than can be found in the entire United States.  It is the last natural forest in this bio-geographical zone, making its conservation imperative.

The University of the Phililippines in Los Baños (UPLB) collaborated with the UPLB Alumni Association Inc. (UPLBAA) in organizing KapaligiRUN, having been at the forefront of initiating and implementing projects for the integrated development and protection of the MFR.

Under Republic Act 3523and RA 6967, the jurisdiction, administration and protection of this nature reserve was entrusted to UPLB for its multiple values as a training laboratory, a critical watershed, a biodiversity hotspot, and as a key ecotourism destination.

Mt. Makiling lies in the midst of a rapidly urbanizing and industrializing region, and has been under considerable pressure from the intrusion of human settlements and activities. This was compounded by the increasing cost of managing the MFR and the decreasing resources available from government sources.

The UPLB and the UPLBAA decided to use the KapaligiRUN2 as one of its platforms in staging a sustained campaign for the MFR, supported by the Laguna Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) and its member-companies, with the help of ecologically concerned local government units (LGUs) in the area.

Initially KapaligiRUN2 will help  in generating awareness on the need for all stakeholders to be  partners in this advocacy for an economically and ecologically sustainable forest and watershed in this region.

With “UPLB Leads Green” as its core thematic message, KapaligiRUN2 hopes to generate support for the UPLB campus into becoming the country’s leading ecotourism destination, being the gateway to Mt. Makiling and the mandated steward for this tropical forest reserve.

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