FEATURE -Paula Franchesca Ramirez

– The Queen whose goal is to touch people’s lives

It has always been her dream to work in an airline company when she was still young. Airplanes and travelling were her dreams. And now, she’s living the life.

Hailing from Laguna, Paula Franchesca Ramirez, 28, is working as a Human Resource Coordinator since 2013 in one of the leading airline companies based in Dubai. She may be the youngest member in the HR department tenure-wise, but she has already received several accolades in her profession.

“When Emirates called me in 2013 for the Senior Human Resources Assistant position, I said yes in a heartbeat even if it meant to moving away from my family in Abu Dhabi and living an independent life for the first time in my life,” she said.

A graduate of Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Communication at the University of the Philippines–Manila, Ramirez has been exposed to several lines of work that included advertising, marketing, research writing, events management, and HR.

She has tested the waters, tried every field, until she got to realize that her home is HR.

To date, she manages employees’ information, processes transactions in the HR systems which impact payroll, among others, to their more than 70,000 employees across the globe.

Dealing with a variety of cultures, Ramirez said that she needs to be flexible and be prepared to multitask.

Her profession taught her to have a stronger personality as it requires frequent mediating between parties and resolving issues.

During her younger years, she regularly joins beauty pageants in the Philippines.

She started to expose herself in pageantry since first grade. Initially, it was just because her teachers told her to join pageants but eventually she enjoyed competing.

She stopped joining pageants when she was admitted in UP Manila.

“I had a change of priorities which I am not regretting because at some point you will really feel tired and you will always crave for a more peaceful life,” Ramirez said.

During her college years, she was an active volunteer of different non-civic organizations that included Ugnayan ng Pahinungod. The group aims to uphold the university’s culture of nationalism through giving back to the community.

With the drive to help people in need, Ramirez was part of the program for street children. She is proud to be part of the program which focuses on activities that would develop the self-confidence and artistic capabilities of the children and open their minds from darkness to light.

Meanwhile, here in the UAE, she is an active member of a religious organization called Katolikong Pinoy sa Abu Dhabi Committee (KPAD).

Aside from looking after church activities, Ramirez and her group do regular outreach programs for distressed Filipinos housed in the Philippine Embassy in Abu Dhabi.

Most do not know that Ramirez is always part of church activities around the world. She was one of the delegates from the Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Arabia in 2011 who went to the World Youth Day in Madrid, Spain. Two years after that, she was chosen as the representative of the same religious organization in welcoming Pope Francis in Rio de Janeiro.

“We visited a shelter for battered kids in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

“These kids were taken from their families while their parents are undergoing rehabilitation,” the HR coordinator said.

Ramirez is also a member of the World Vision Philippines, a non-civic group which focuses on providing and assisting the needs, rights and responsibilities of children through sustainable development and education.

Joining these kinds of activities opened her eyes to the realities of the world, appreciated different cultures and deepened her faith.

“It’s more of a personal drive. I’ve always wanted to help in whatever way I can. That’s the only way I can share my blessings and leave a mark on other people’s lives. When I grow old, I would like to look back and be able to tell myself that I lived a meaningful life and my small ways made a difference in this world,” she said when asked why she’s doing what she does.


Beauty pageant calls again

Last year, the Filipina never thought of joining beauty pageants again after she commenced in college. A non-partisan group approached her to represent the organization for the first ever search for the Bayanihan Festival Queen.

She won the pageant and served as the ambassador of the community.

“I’ve always been for the youth, as you can note from my extracurricular activities, it is always geared towards helping to cultivate the youth for the future and this is the same vision what the organization I represented has,” Ramirez added.

At first, she felt that she was too old for pageants, but she joined just to prove to herself that she can still conquer the stage.

“Winning the crowd gave me another avenue to become an inspiration to others and make my family and friends proud,” she said.

“Don’t ever let anyone stop you from chasing your dreams and to make you feel you’re not beautiful because you are. Stop comparing yourself to others. Nobody else could be you even if they try to be. You are you,” her piece of advice to the people who would like to emulate her.

When asked about the most valuable lesson she has learned during her stay abroad, the Filipina beauty queen said is to have faith.

“Seek comfort in God’s loving arms not on any other temporarily felicity. Being away from your family and friends will definitely push you to the other direction but being closer to him and trusting him with your life helps you focus on your life goals and your true mission why you’re here in this place and that is to work for the betterment of the families we left home.

“More so, make money but don’t let money make you,” Ramirez said. 


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