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Charlie Cojuangco’s Legacy Lives Through The Little Blue Chair

This little plastic toddler chair is now a symbol of the tycoon’s devotion to helping others


The  late Carlos “Charlie” Cojuangco was a public servant in more ways than one. Besides serving multiple terms as representative of the  provinces of Negros Occidental and Tarlac, he was a philanthropist who established the Carlos O. Cojuangco Foundation (COCFI), which supported a variety of altruistic causes and programs. He also never failed to personally give to individuals who came to him  seeking for his help.


His  wife China is no different. She co-founded an organization called Maria Maria that organized decade-long feeding programs to impoverished communities. She was also a volunteer docent, a regular donor to fund raising  drives and a reliable help in her parish.


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What  propelled the establishment of Little Blue Chair was a short video clip found in Charlie’s phone, now posted in their website, in which he is asking a beneficiary to publicly spread the word about their arrangement and pay the good deed forward.  “When  life blesses you financially, raise your standard of giving and not your standard of living…  This was repeatedly shared to me by Mr. and Mrs. Cojuangco as their stringent practice. This principle serves as the precedent for this initiative,” says Josephine Romero of the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship, a mentor to Little Blue  Chair who is helping standardize the platform. The couple actively sought out Romero’s expertise for their previous endeavors, now she is overseeing Little Blue Chair with two international advisors. 



“The  endowment for Little Blue Chair is very straightforward, most funds from Mr. Charlie Cojuangco that were inherited by his surviving spouse are allotted to their/her chosen beneficiaries to be disbursed over a period of time.” Romero adds.


“The  endowment for Little Blue Chair is very straightforward, most funds from Mr. Charlie Cojuangco that were inherited by his surviving spouse are allotted to their/her chosen beneficiaries to be disbursed over a period of time.” Romero adds.


“Channels  were always relied on by the couple to allocate their donations,” shares Cydea Paras, a member of an intergovernmental organization and also of the Little Blue Chair consultants, “This approach will continue, their goodwill remains undisclosed," she furthers.


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Why  Little Blue Chair?


In  October 2020, not too long after the couple got engaged, Charlie presented China with a gift: a plastic blue toddler chair. It was, in Charlie’s words, “so that you are always around me, no excuse.”


The  chair became a symbol of how much Charlie valued his wife’s company and her views about a variety of topics, as he would constantly pull up the chair so she could sit near him, “to listen, converse, plan, argue, sing, debate among other things in the bathroom,  dressing room, garage, kitchen, office, while sitting in her (my) little blue chair.”


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Little blue toddler chair that was given by Charlie Cojuangco to his wife, China Jocson-Cojuangco. | Courtesy of Little Blue Chair


As  mentioned in the website they “planned their betrothal, wedding, birthdays, his political career, his projects, their future and their charitable pursuits while she sat on the portable piece.”


“Our  commitment to charities was also affirmed in one of our ‘chair sessions,” China writes. “And while circumstances have changed, I vow to honor all our obligations and even more.”


It’s  been six months after Charlie’s passing, and while China is strictly observing the traditional year-long period of mourning, “there will be no inertia in terms of the ceding,” as firmly assured by Little Blue Chair’s proponents.