Michelle Dee on CoinGeek Backstage

Miss Universe Philippines 2023 Michelle Dee taps blockchain to champion autism awareness

The Miss Universe 2023 coronation ended on November 18, and although the Philippines bet Michelle Dee couldn’t take home the crown, she made her country proud for making it to the top 10.

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Before flying to El Salvador for the 72nd Miss Universe pageant, Dee was at the Philippine Blockchain Week 2023 (PBW 2023) to champion her NFTs for Autism initiative.

Highly driven by her advocacy toward the inclusivity, awareness, and education of individuals with autism and inspired by her lifelong mission growing up with two siblings on the spectrum, Dee released the Spectrum Sanctuary collection—an NFT art collection meticulously painted by Filipino artist Marius Black.

“I’ve been such an advocate for Web3 adoption, but I’ve also been such an advocate for autism awareness,” Dee said to CoinGeek Backstage‘s Claire Celdran on the sidelines of the PBW 2023.

“What I just wanted to do is merge both of my passions because I do believe that blockchain is the future. Whether we know it or we don’t know it, it is the future. And I wanted to utilize that technology to benefit my advocacy, which is individuals on the spectrum. I want to advocate for autism, inclusivity, awareness, and education.”

Dee, who is passionate about emerging technologies like blockchain, said she learned about the technology during the pandemic.

“The pandemic actually opened up the door for me to give attention to the things that I wasn’t able to give attention to before,” Dee revealed. “I realized that the technology was just boundless. It was definitely, in my opinion, the future.”

Like most individuals in the blockchain space, Dee is skeptical about “cryptocurrencies,” but the Miss Universe Philippines 2023 sees blockchain as an amazing innovation because of its transparency and decentralized nature.

On speaking about the importance of adopting Web3, Dee believes that this new internet iteration would be the future, and everyone would be forced to adopt it eventually.

“Whether it’s next year, whether it’s ten years from now, eventually everything will transition towards the next new shiny thing or the next thing that gives us more convenience. And I believe, and everybody is open to their own opinion, that Web3 essentially is the future. So it’s either you get left behind, or you adapt,” said Dee.

In partnership with BayaniChain, Dee’s Spectrum Sanctuary NFT collection can be easily accessed via a QR code on their website with an affordable flat rate of PHP 1,999 ($36). All the proceeds for the NFTs will be used to build state-of-the-art facilities for individuals with autism.

Watch Philippine Blockchain Week 2023 ‘Breakout’: Breaking barriers and forging the future

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