John, John and Lenard make bokashi balls at their local Unbound office.
Boxes of completed bokashi balls.
Sponsored elders are ready to toss the bokashi balls into Laguna Lake.
Tomorrow, Aprill 22, is Earth Day, and Unbound sponsored friends
and their families in the Philippines are celebrating with bokashi balls.
No, it isn’t a new healthy cereal to help cleanse your system. But it will help cleanse rivers and other freshwater resources.
“Bokashi” is a Japanese term that means “fermented organic matter” and refers to a system developed in Japan that uses beneficial micro-organisms to break down toxins and food waste. Bokashi balls can improve the life of the river and help restore it to its proper ecological balance.
Unbound’s Antipolo project in the Philippines has been making bokashi balls since 2009 and started to see positive environmental effects in area rivers where the mudballs have been utilized..
Click here to read more about bokashi balls.
Sponsor Becky Costas gets a chance to meet her sponsored friend, Jonathan, on an awareness trip to the Philippines.
Bill and Becky Costas have been sponsors since 1996. Becky works as a sign language interpreter, and in honor of Deaf Awareness Day, we would like to share her reflections on being a sponsor and participating in awareness trips.
God had a plan when he gave me a heart for the deaf and the skills to work as a sign language interpreter.
On an awareness trip to the Philippines in 2006 to meet our sponsored child who was soon graduating from college, my husband, Bill, and I met a group of deaf students.
We were waiting for a Mass to begin when I noticed movement to my right. When I turned, I saw a group of deaf students signing in American Sign Language.
Ruperto checks the blood pressure of fellow elder Agapita.
By Dallas Parker, communications intern at Unbound
Watching out for the health of our aging friends is extremely important to all of us here at Unbound. In partnership with Care for the Aging, a program that offers weekly blood pressure monitoring and other health care advice, 95 sponsored elderly members of our Quezon project in the Philippines obtain the medical attention they need.
Facilitators of the program in the Payatas community are not only monitoring blood pressure, but they are also teaching the elderly how to care for themselves.
By Dallas Parker, communications intern at Unbound
Sponsored elderly in the Philippines are all smiles on their way to Elderly Day activities organized by the Quezon project.
For our aging friends, having fun is essential to their health and well-being. Unbound hosts events designed to give social opportunities to aging friends like Elderly Day in our Quezon project in the Philippines. Read more
ERPAT fathers group leader Reynaldo.
ERPAT fathers and other community members come together to rebuild sponsored elder Antonio’s home.
By Jordan Kimbrell, Unbound writer/editor
After Typhoon Haiyan washed over the Philippines, leaving devastation in its wake, help from all over the world came pouring in. With all the aid from international sources, it is still the stories of communities reaching out to their neighbors that touched us the most.
Meet Reynaldo. He is a leader of the ERPATs (a service group for fathers of sponsored children) in Iloilo, one of the areas hit hard by the storm. Thanks to his efforts, families in his area were evacuated to safety before the storm. Now, he is helping rebuild with disaster assistance from Unbound.
Read more about Reynaldo and his community here.
What’s in a name? Scott Wasserman, Unbound’s new president and chief executive officer, shares what he learned meeting sponsored children and their families in the Philippines.
By Loretta Shea Kline, managing editor, Unbound
Sponsored youth James plays drums in a festival parade.
Colorful costumes are a big part of the Ati-Atihan Festival.
One of the beautiful aspects of the relationships built through sponsoring a child or elderly friend is learning about the vibrancy and richness of other cultures.
Sponsored friends often write to their sponsors about celebrating cultural events or holidays in their countries.
One such event recently took place in the Philippines. The Ati-Atihan Festival features parades known for their lively tribal dances, colorful indigenous costumes and sounds of drums and lyres (small harp-like instruments).
Girlie, a former sponsored student from the Philippines.
The Unbound project in Legazpi, Philippines, recently sent us success stories from young adults who were sponsored through Unbound. Here’s one from Girlie, who just graduated with a degree in business management/information technology after many challenges along the way. Congratulations, Girlie!
Whew. The holiday weekend is over. We’ve given thanks, eaten at least one feast, hunted deals and shopped online.
Now we get to take a deep breath. We get to turn our attention to others as we embrace the generosity that marks this season, one of giving thanks and giving gifts. Today, we give back.
Today is Giving Tuesday, a world-wide movement encouraging us all to donate and volunteer, working together to make our world a better place.
From left: Michelle, Venus and Alona in the Philippines find a little help and encouragement goes a long way. The three friends dream of becoming teachers.
Three friends from the Philippines dreaming of becoming teachers now see that dream within their grasp.
And it’s because someone believed in them.