I have traveled around and lived in the Philippines since 2009. This has allowed me to see firsthand the poverty that burdens the Filipino people. It is heart-wrenching the things I have seen over the years. I have helped when I could, but always wanted to do more.
When helping those in need, my main concern has always been to make sure the help was going to be used in a right way. There are many who abuse the kindness of tourists and visitors who are not wise to the misuse of their giving. There are plenty of people who beg for money that gets used for drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, playing computer games in the local internet cafe, etc. This is why I never give actual money.
Food is a basic need, so I will usually buy food to give away. Personally, I prefer to help in ways that will change lives. It's easy to give someone food for a day, but the next day, they are still looking for their next meal. You haven't really changed their life in any way, you have only prolonged the situation with a temporary bandage.
Many times, the reason for their situation boils down to cultural issues which are very difficult to change. Since changing an entire culture can take generations of time, I recently looked deeper into how I could impact just one person in a way that would make a difference in the long run. This lead me to look at the innocent children who have no control over their situation.
The children did not create their situation, but they suffer in many ways due to the decisions their parents have made. This issue is a whole other topic that we will not venture into. Providing for an innocent child is a way to change a life and their future. It begins with proper food and nutrition as this young body is developing. It's a critical basic need that can affect their growth and opportunity in life.
Many of the Filipino families have more children than they can financially care for in a proper way. It is very common to see Filipino families with 7 or more kids. Most of them struggle to provide food and other basic needs for themselves and only 2 kids. It is also very common to see the older children working in some way to support the rest of the family as young teens.
My idea and goal is to help the babies who are not getting basic milk to help their young bodies and brains develop normally. Many times a mother will stop breastfeeding the baby after only a short time, so she can get back to work and make money for the family. This leaves the baby to depend on a powdered milk substitute which is expensive for the average Filipino family. The common alternative ends up being a rice cereal of sorts.
Rice has almost no nutritional value, but is a common cheap food for Filipinos to fill the belly. When our bodies digest and process rice, it has the same basic effect as sugar to the body. A growing baby or child needs more nutritional value than that to develop properly. Helping an infant at this critical stage of development is key to their future.
With your help, I want to buy a nutritious powdered milk to give to those poor Filipino families, so the babies have a chance for a better life. Helping one child at a time is a start and measurable. Obviously, a one-time gift of milk will not have a permanent effect, so it needs to be monthly for a period of time.
My immediate goal is to help 25 babies to have milk for 12 months. This works out to be about $1,000 per year, per child. Hopefully, the same amount could be used to help school age children to pay for tuition, school supplies and uniforms. I believe giving basic food and educational support to needy children can help change their life and their future much better than simply giving money to the poor families.
Will you help change the life of just one child? Any amount is helpful and greatly appreciated.