Fifteen creative hub leaders from the Philippines have been selected to become Creative Innovators Fellows. Eighty-four applicants from three key cities within the Philippines applied to a highly competitive open call launched by British Council, DTI and partners last June 2018. A selection panel composed of artists and creative industry leaders narrowed down the list, based on the creative hub’s potential to scale impact, long-term plans, and narrative, among others.

The Fellows will ­undergo a professional development programme for over a year. The Fellowship will include a hub management training by Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation; a study tour in the UK; a creative skills bootcamp by Thames International and foundation; mentoring sessions; and network-building activities within the Philippines, ASEAN and the UK.

Maria Diana Ofrasio

Workshop Manager, Craft MNL | Makati City


Working with: Artisans, and designers in the craft sector

Hub features: Makerspace, training programme

Diana believes that one doesn’t need a degree to be an artist, live a creative life and do one’s part in building a creative community, For her makerspace, she would like to be able to design comprehensive educational programmes and materials geared specifically towards product development, and recognise the value of making with purpose. 

Maria Unicka Sta. Ana

Co-Founder, Zapateria | Marikina City


Working with: Designers and SMEs in the design and shoe manufacturing industry

Hub features: Product development workshop

Zapateria founder Unicka is also Amihan’s VP of Product Innovation & co-founder of Nimble, an omnichannel engagement platform that leverages Big Data, AI and dynamic content for notable companies. She hopes to leverage the network and training from the Fellowship to help Zapateria execute its sustainability model in fostering creativity in the local shoe industry.

Patricia Kyle Mendoza

Project Officer, Materials Innovation Centre (MATIC) Cebu City


Working with: Product developers, designers, exporters in the design and manufacturing sectors

Hub features: Materials repository

Patricia’s current projects with MATIC connect academic concerns with industry needs, and offer real world experience outside of the classroom. Through the Fellowship, she hopes to solidify a roadmap for MATIC to combine tactile experience with digital ease of access, and set the right foundations.

Paul Andrew Orpiada

Founder, Karaw Craftventures Naga City, Camarines Sur

Website: KarawCraftVentures on Facebook

Working with: Inmate-artisans and other marginalised groups in the craft sector

Hub features: Upcycling design lab

Paul is a passionate artist, social entrepreneur and community development advocate. Through the fellowship, he wants to be more adept in managing a creative hub that constantly introduces human-centred product designs that can effectively cater the ever-changing needs of the market.


Regil Kent Cadavos

Community Engagement Lead, ASPACE Cebu City

Working with: SMEs across creative industries

Hub features: Co-working, event space

Regil is from a small town in Southern Leyte and currently nesting in Cebu City, living life through enabling and supporting creatives and small local communities to thrive. She would love to see ASPACE Cebu become the go-to hub for creative, innovative, forward-thinking, go-getter locals who aim to make an impact in the city and help elevate the local scene.