Zanti Gayares is a writer, journalist, scientist, and activist at the Holy Child Catholic School in Manila. He has won numerous journalism prizes and awards at both regional and national levels, carries out advanced scientific research, is a passionate advocate for science, press freedom, climate action, and LGTBQ rights.
Zanti uses his platform as a journalist to tell the stories of marginalized or oppressed sections of society such as indigenous people, give voice their struggles, and bridge gaps between disparate groups. In his term as the Editor-in-Chief of his school newspaper, Zanti pushed for a renewed focus on environmental actions and promoted the importance of science literacy to counter pandemic misinformation. At the national level, Zanti is an opinion writer and columnist for Explained PH, a youth-driven publication where he writes about social justice in the education and science sectors. He is also National Secretariat of the Science and Technology Editors Guild of the Philippines (SENTINEL)
As a researcher, in 11th grade Zanti wrote a paper about bioplastics and their significance as a biotechnological solution which won a silver medal in the 1st Manila Intellectual Property Innovation and Business Incubation Expo 2021. He is currently conducting a study exploring the benefits of the biomaterial chitin, proving it can help coagulate blood for potential pharmaceutical use.
He worked on a project "VaccSENSE: Taps for Jabs," where he created an application to boost the vaccination campaign and lessen vaccine hesitancy. The project won 2nd place in the Pitch Competition of Kapnayan 2022, a science literacy competition for high school students nationwide hosted by the University of the Philippines.
More recently Zanti worked on the "HiFACT Project" which analyses smoking habits among Filipinos and advocates for vape pens, garnering the Most Innovative Award among all the delegates in the competition.
Zanti is a tireless activist across various causes and cares deeply about sparking positive change in society. In 10th grade, he became a representative of the Department of Tourism, Culture, and Arts of Manila (DTCAM) and then later joined democratic organizations such as Kabataan Partylist – focusing on the role of the youth in policy advocacy and campaigns – and joined Youth for Climate Action Philippines (YACAP) in which he amplified the calls for environmental action and climate awareness. He is also Education and Research Head of Rise for Education Alliance and moderates sessions on LGBTQ topics for the organization. Zanti has also acted as a delegate in the Asia Youth Model United Nations and represented Vietnam for UNESCO.