In the year 2011, Rene ‘Tatay Eti’ Vendiola was awarded the General Pantaleon Villegas Award as “Outstanding Baconganon” for environmental conservation. In 2012 ‘Tatay Eti’ received the Ramon Aboitiz Foindation Inc. (RAFI) Triennial Award on Exemplary Individual for environment conservation.
And last February 22, 2016, HABAGAT Ambassador Rene “Tatay Eti” Vendiola received the Environmental Protection Award from the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Environmental Protection. This award was presented to him by Sec. J. R. Nereus O. Acosta, Secretary/Presidential Adviser for Environmental Protection, for his dedication and contribution to environmental protection demonstrated by his passion and commitment to the conservation and preservation of Liptong Woodland. Awarding ceremony took place in Foundation University, Dumaguete City.
His lifelong advocacy to preserve rare and endemic trees and promote sustainable farming bear the fruits of his labor – winning awards for promoting protection for the environment and more importantly, inspiring others to be one with his cause. Achieving this award, according to Tatay Eti, is definitely one “Proud Moment”. But he humbly states that with or without awards, the important thing is to realize that we are responsible for the protection of our environment to ensure a life for our children that will be better than ours.
Liptong Woodland, located in Bacong, Negros Oriental, is a regular venue for Siliman University’s week-long Annual Service Learning Program involving local and foreign students.
He started his passion for the environment by planting Philippine native trees and plants, especially those from the Negros Island. Most of the trees in the Liptong Woodland are endangered & endemic species.
Being once a kaingin farmer, he is now driven by his love for nature that leads him to preserve the environment and serves as an inspiration to others. Anyone can do what Tatay Eti has done as long as you put your heart into it.