Tag Archives: Bataan

Apr 2 2011

Sponsorship taps community spirit with Filipino water system

Water system in Bataan, PhilippinesMany of us can just turn to a faucet if we’re thirsty. Residents in the Filipino community of Camias, however, didn’t have that luxury.

They had to navigate flights of steep, rocky steps to fill a five-gallon container for the entire day’s water needs. Families would struggle to drink, cook and bathe using those precious five gallons.

(The U.S. average per capita water consumption is 90-100 gallons a day, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.)

But help was on its way. Families served by CFCA’s sponsorship program in the neighborhood of Bataan, a community in Manila, reached out to residents of Camias by helping them build a water system.

Read more about the water system.

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Feb 20 2009

Visiting the Philippines with Paul

On†the recent mission awareness trip to the Philippines, CFCA President Bob Hentzen and Paul Pearce, CFCA international programs director, divided the sponsors into two groups to travel to different parts of the country.† In this post, Paul tells about his group’s experiences. Read about Bob’s trip.

Mission awareness trip
Philippines, Feb. 2-8, 2009

By bus and by boat
Legazpi staff and sponsored members with their families meet us at the tiny Pili Airport in Naga City. Our group traveled by bus and boat to the hotel. Under the watchful eye of the volcano Isarog, the setting is definitely South Pacific.

The theme Legazpi has chosen for this yearís trip is ìCFCA: Bridging People Amidst Diversity.î Maria Luz, at the closing of her testimonial and upon meeting her sponsors, said she is ìthe happiest girl in the world.î In tears, sponsor Mariano was moved by the hospitality the sponsors received.†We enjoy a rousing, sand-blown rendition of ìThis Little Light of Mine.î

Later, the Legazpi scholarship youth and staff energize a running-out-of-gas sponsor group. Sponsor April and her sponsored friend, Aprilyn, lift the roof with a duet of ìYou Are My Hero.î Sponsors head for the pillow after a long and beautiful day.
April and Aprilyn

Legazpi angels

Riding two big buses, we headed down the coastal road toward Legazpi to participate in a tree-planting activity at the municipal park in the town of Tiwi. After visiting the Tiwi geothermal plant, we pass miles of pristine rice fields, stopping at the ruins of Cagsawa, a colonial church destroyed by one of the many eruptions of the Mayon volcano, and the volcanic rock and mud flow area from the 2006 eruption that killed numerous persons and affected CFCA families substantially.

Sponsors commented how much they liked the ìangelî concept of the Legazpi project. Sponsors were each assigned a staff member, called an angel, to accompany them from arrival to departure, guide them, answer questions and†wake them in the morning, if needed. Sponsors have felt very well-cared-for in Legazpi.


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Feb 16 2009

Bob’s notes – Visit to the Philippines

Mission awareness trip
Jan. 29 – Feb. 9, 2009

A warm welcome
Sponsored children in the Philippines welcome us with a smile and a song. Their choir of 20 sponsored children charmed everyone.
Welcome to the Philippines
With great admiration I note that our dear friend and longtime sponsor Jerry Menard has arrived in good health and great spirit. He currently has two children sponsored in the Philippines. I believe this mission awareness trip marks Jerryís seventh trip this year to visit sponsored children.

During lunch the owners of the Good Shepherd Center in Antipolo, where our group is staying, told me that after meeting the sponsors and learning about CFCA, they, too, want to become sponsors.

Two talented sponsored girls with severe physical limitations won our hearts with an emotional rendition of ìYou Light Up My Life.î Four personal testimonies added meaning and substance to the afternoon.

Visit to former sponsored child, elderly in dump

In Quezon, we split into small groups to visit families and livelihood projects. My group visited the home of Maria Elena, a former sponsored child, recently married and now working as a business analyst and auditor at a major bank. Riding jeepneys and tricycles takes Maria Elena the better part of two hours to get to work and costs about $2. But the work is steady, and Maria Elena is grateful to be able to help her mother.

We were able to visit several aging friends in the dump area of Payatas. They seem to overcome difficult living conditions with hope and determination.

Today after lunch we traveled about one hour into the countryside near Antipolo to encourage an organic and sustainable food/farming program for 21 families. We dedicated a new water pump and hand tractor, purchased with a loan from CFCA. The hand tractor motor also provides power for the new irrigation pump. The tractor and irrigation system permits the CFCA families to produce two rice crops per year – sometimes three.

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