Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Faces Of Hunger, Faces Of Hope


Every 2.9 seconds, a person dies of hunger ,
75% of them are children!

More than 15,000 have already died of hunger today!

For this year alone, more than 3 million have already died of hunger!

Right now, more than 500 million people are living in "absolute poverty" and more than 15 million children die of hunger every year.

10 things you can do to help
stop world hunger!

 (Click the above link to find out how you can make a difference.)

Learn more about hunger and how others are getting involved worldwide to put a stop to it. Browse through the various sites below and find out what they do and how you can extend a helping hand to their efforts.
Heifer International - Giving Gifts of Hope and Rebuilding Lives!Heifer envisions…A world of communities living together in peace and equitably sharing the resources of a healthy planet. Heifer’s mission is… To work with communities to end hunger and poverty and to care for the earth. Heifer's strategy is…To “pass on the gift.” As people share their animals’ offspring with others – along with their knowledge, resources, and skills – an expanding network of hope, dignity, and self-reliance is created that reaches around the globe.
Stop Hunger Now - Stop Hunger Now is an international hunger relief organization that coordinates the distribution of food and other life-saving aid around the world. The organization is driven by a vision to end world hunger in our lifetime and a mission to provide food and life-saving aid to the world’s most destitute and hungry in the most sustainable, efficient and effective manner. 
The Hunger Site - The Hunger Site was founded to focus the power of the Internet on a specific humanitarian need: the eradication of world hunger. Since its launch in June 1999, the site has established itself as a leader in online activism, helping to feed the world's hungry. On average, over 220,000 individuals from around the world visit the site each day to click the yellow "Click Here to Give - it's FREE" button. To date, more than 300 million visitors have given more than 500 million cups of staple food. 
Action Against Hunger - The mission of Action Against Hunger is to save lives by eliminating hunger through the prevention, detection, and treatment of malnutrition, especially during and after emergency situations of conflict, war and natural disaster. From crisis to sustainability, we tackle the underlying causes of malnutrition and its effects by using our expertise in nutrition, food security, water and sanitation, health and advocacy. By integrating our programs with local and national systems we further ensure that short-term interventions become long-term solutions.  
Feed The Hungry San Miguel de Allende Mexico -An independent nonprofit corporation in the US (Federal Tax ID # 20-1193434) and in Mexico providing hot, nutritious meals every regular school day to children who do not have enough to eat. 

Feeding America - The organization is made up of individuals, local food banks, national offices, as well as corporate and government partners. Together, we are bigger, better, stronger and more efficient than the sum of our parts. Working as a cohesive system is the only way we can truly solve the hunger crisis.


FOOD FOR LIFE Global  -A nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable organization registered in the State of Maryland, USA. Food for Life Global is the international headquarters for Food for Life - the world´s largest vegan/vegetarian food relief. Food for Life Global is funded mainly by member donations and corporate grants. 

Food For The Poor - The number one international relief and development charity in the United States, feeding 2 million people everyday. We help the poorest of the poor by providing food, housing, health care, education, water projects, emergency relief and micro-enterprise assistance in the Caribbean and Latin America. 
Friends of World Food Program - A U.S.-based, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that focuses on building support in the United States for the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) and other hunger relief operations.  Friends of WFP unites organizations and individuals committed to solving world hunger. Our education, advocacy and fundraising efforts in the United States support WFP’s life-saving global food assistance and development programs. 
Stop hunger now! Get Involved! 
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Friday, April 24, 2009

A Daughter's Achievement - Her Father's Pride

Last April 5, my eldest daughter Winchell graduated from Davao Doctor's College with a B.S. Biology Degree! The hardships she went through to get the diploma makes this achievement not only memorable but truly, one which every father can be proud of!

With the rest of the family having migrated to the main island to look for greener pastures, Sheng, as we fondly call her, decided to stay to finish her studies. She was on her senior year and her last semester so she refused to bow down to the heavy financial pressures besetting the whole family. She simply didn't want to let the family's effort through the years to just go to waste! Left with barely enough to keep her going, she rented a small room in a boarding house near her school so she need not take a ride. She would often skip lunch and dinner just to get by, saving whatever money she has for transportation to and pro Davao's Crocodile Farm where she was doing a required research on reptiles as a pre-requisite to her graduation. Fortunately, she had some kind-hearted friends and classmates who willingly shared with her whatever they can. She would even swallow her pride and do some tasks for her classmates like do their reports and finish some research in exchange for them shouldering some research expenses for her.

Sheng spent Christmas 2008 all by her lonely self. She asked me to call her then which
I promptly did - but we both could hardly talk as we both were choking in tears! In between sobs, sighs, and flowing tears, she managed to tell me she won't quit despite the seemingly endless difficulties she was going through. she was hell bent to finish her studies! I could feel the pain and suffering she was going through then and I just found myself telling her to just follow her mom and her siblings back to the main island. But stubborn as she is, she refused. I could no longer go on with the conversations at that time because my tears were pouring like rain.

Her own siblings stopped schooling to find work in the main island to help her finish college. Fortunately, they were able to find work immediately as call center agents. In the next few weeks after that, Sheng's burden lightened. Her two sisters and brother started sending her money to pay off her school obligations and other graduation expenses. They sent her money for her food too and even bought her a dress and a new pair of shoes for graduation.

Finally, graduation day, April 5, 2009, came. She wanted her mom to be with her during this memorable event in her life! But alas, the airfare was too expensive and the family had no more money after paying off all her school dues and graduation expenses. So, I called up my cousin Ramon's daughter who also lives in Davao to stand up for us on her graduation day. She got more than what we wanted. No less than my cousin Ramon himself accompanied Sheng to her graduation - and even prepared a party for her at their house.

Today, Sheng is with the rest of the family in the main island! Her dream is really to proceed to medical school but we just won't be able to afford it. For now, Sheng will start to look for work and this time to help out her two sisters
finish college.

I am so proud of her for having the guts and the temerity to finish schooling despite the seemingly insurmountable difficulties. I am proud of her siblings for making sacrifices too. I am proud of my wife for holding the family together during those trying times. I am proud of this family which others thought will never succeed!

Sheng with Cousin Ramon's Family After Her Graduation
Sheng with her classmates inside the crocodile cage

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Go2Web20.net is a complete and unique Web 2.0 directory. Developed and launched in September 2006 by two Israeli computer geeks, the site has proven to be very popular with itsA tag cloud with terms related to Web 2. unique and visually attractive presentation of the websites under its listing using the start up logos of these different sites. Putting the cursor on top of a particular logo will bring up a short flash description of the site. Clicking a logo will bring up a tab at the bottom of the browser like frame which contains a link and some basic information about the site. Selecting a tag or topic is also fun and easy. Clicking the select button will bring up a comprehensive tag cloud from which you can choose your tag/topic and the resulting display of site logos will be limited to the tag selection. Surfing the net has never been this easy and fun.

Surfing before requires going through a search engine, typing a tag or topic, and reading through the descriptive snippets. It was tasking and tiring. Now, with the new upgraded Go2Web.net, everything is through a click of the mouse. There simply is no wasted surfing time.

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Monday, April 20, 2009

Will You Rape Your Own Mother!

This probably is the most despicable thought that even the most callous criminal mind will find too difficult to execute! It is definitely beyond the imagination of the ordinary...the most condemnable act that only the one possessed by a demon will be able to perpetrate!

What only a few of us realize is that today, all over the globe, people have been abusing, raping, and choking to death their own Mother.....Mother Earth!

On April 22, 2008, we shall be celebrating Earth Day. The celebration was started in 1970 by Senator Gaylord Nelson to raise awareness and appreciation for Mother Earth.
It is the aim of this celebration to make people realize that we are slowly 'choking to death' the very planet we live in. Forest denudation, industrial pollution, overused of its resources... these are some of the forms of abuses we have knowingly and unknowingly perpetrated on Mother Earth.

Let us care for the very planet we live in. Let us be aware of the abuses man has for generations bestowed on mother nature. April 22, 2009 Earth Day's celebration is the start of a two-year Green Generation Campaign designed to spread awareness and concern for Mother Earth. Let us participate and join local community activities. At the very least, let us not do anything that will further hurt mother earth. Let us make everyday an Earth Day!

In the Philippines, one commendable everyday Earth Day activity worth emulating is the "Kapit Bisig Para Sa Pasig" project launched by Gina Lopez of the ABS-CBN foundation in conjunction with some government and non-government agencies. The project is aimed at reviving the dying Pasig River  and bring it back to life.

This is how Pasig River looked like in all its grandeur in the 1930's. 'The river, which stretches for 25 kilometers from Laguna de Bay to Manila Bay, serves as a major transport route, source of water, and lifeline of Laguna de Bay (one of the biggest freshwater lakes in the world) as such it is a vital ecosystem and an irreplaceable natural resource.'

This is how Pasig River looks like today. For decades, the river has been overused, abused and neglected. With more than 300 factories and 10,000 families lining its banks, Pasig River has been turned into a perennial waste bin. The river has been declared a critical water body with more than 300 tons of  industrial and domestic waste being dumped on it everyday.

'Until recently, little has been done to protect the river system. Past efforts to rehabilitate Pasig river were unsuccessful because they failed to take into account the larger context of the urban environment of which Pasig river is a part of.'

The Public and Private Sector Initiatives
In December 1989, the government began working on a comprehensive rehabilitation program for Pasig with Denmark. The Pasig River Rehabilitation Program (PRRP), was an integrated effort to bring back ecological health to the river system.
On January 6, 1999, President Estrada signed Executive Order No. 54 creating the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC) to manage the rehabilitation efforts for the river and regulate the dumping of untreated wastewater and solid waste on this waterway. It also involves resettling squatters along the Pasig and the development of parks by the riverside. The Belgian government has also offered help by way of a P20 million grant for dredging.

Yet, all these seemed to come to nothing as the river continued to be the dumping ground of informal settlers who live along the banks of the river and its tributaries, as well as by almost all industrial and commercial establishments surrounding it.

A hundred years ago, renowned American urban planner Daniel Burnham compared Manila Bay to the bay of Naples, the Pasig River to the winding river of Paris and Manila’s esteros to the canals of Venice.   Today, Pasig River is no more than a ghost of itself with hardly any life form able to survive in its murky recesses.

This scenario of a Venice-like Pasig River  may still be a reality if Gina Lopez"s 'Kapit Bisig Para Sa Ilog Pasig'  project launched through her ABS-CBN Foundation succeeds in its objective. (It must be remembered that it was also Gina's Foundation which successfully reforested the La Mesa Dam Watershed.)  Launched on February 24, 2009, the project hopes to bring back Pasig River into its old grandeur ... and perhaps transformed like the 'canals of Venice". This will only be possible through the concerted efforts of everyone.

With the new enthusiasm generated by the project, this is how the river looks now!

And, with more effort and cooperation, this is how it will look in the future!
Make everyday an Earth Day! Find Earth Day events or actions around the globe. Join, participate, donate!
For the "Kapit Bisig  Para Sa Ilog Pasig"  you may visit the ABS-CBN Foundation Website  or,
For more information, you may visit http://www.ilogmoipatrolmo.multiply.com
You may help in the Kapit Bisig Para sa Ilog Pasig initiative by texting: (For Philippine Residents)
GIVE [space] ILOG
Then send to 231 for Smart & Talk N Text or 2366 for Globe, Touch Mobile, and Sun Cellular.

You may also donate directly to the KBPIP Banco de Oro account:
Branch Name: BDO Scout Albano
Account Name: AFI-BK Pasig Project
Account Number: 393-0078222

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