December 17, 2013

Project Rebuild: Sending Christmas to Bantayan Island

Last Sunday, I headed to Bantayan Island, located in northern Cebu, at three in the morning to give the P32, 000 cash donations and little gifts for the kids I would surely meet along the way. Bantayan Island is the first site of our modest Project Rebuild, an initiative to support livelihood projects, provide cash gifts to the poorest of the poor, and wrap a little  Christmas joy for the kids. Project Rebuild sponsored two small boats (P6 000 each ) through the Bantayan Back to Sea Project. (Check this link to see the post dedicated for Project Rebuild: Post by Bantayan Back […]
December 8, 2013

Palompon after Yolanda (Haiyan)

  In one of the rooms at Palompon Elementary School, these words were framed: Nobyembre Paglilingkod | Pagmamalasakit Ang pagmamalasakit at paglilingkod ay kusang pagbibigay ng ating sariling kakayahan na maaaring material, moral, at ispiritwal sa ating kapwa lalo na sa mga kapus-palad at nangangailangan. 
December 4, 2013

Twenty Days After: Post-Haiyan Lives at Tacloban

The highways are already cleaned up. The debris in the pictures are from the coastal streets especially Magallanes and the one by the public market. Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation is conducting a “cash for work” program. People—around 6000 of them—are paid P500 a day. They shoveled dirt, put them on a fan’s guard—dragged them on the highway, where the garbage truck picked them up. The cleaning was unnecessarily meticulous. But it was the intention of the foundation to provide jobs to those who decided to stay in their beloved city. The market is alive despite the price hikes. There is a visible, […]
November 3, 2013

Manila Bulletin | Newbie Encounter with the Siargao Waves

“They are rather small,” the hippie selling souvenirs at Cloud 9’s boardwalk shrugged her shoulders when I motioned the fierceness of the waves. “They seem furious enough,” I countered. We were at the three-story boardwalk, looking at the lapping tongues of the Pacific piqued and exploded by the lighthouse. Its roaring and breaking left shy tremors beneath our feet. But she just continued singling out hair strands from her scalp and uprooting them while I was already entertaining possible tsunamis hitting the Siargao shore. “Ber months, come here in –ber months,” she said swinging her hammock with her body. In […]