Charity or helping the less fortunate and marginalized individuals is very addictive to most people.
And more so, if you are giving alms or help personally and see the recipients face to face, such gesture makes your life worth living.
Recently, the officers and members of the Association of Ilocanos in Manitoba (AIM) have banded together physically and financially to continue their yearly charitable mission in the various places where needs are most felt in the Philippines. In the past year, led by Mario Rosario and his officers and members had various fund raising events to raise money to buy good and other needs of our kababayan who because of abject poverty could not afford decent food and shelter. And lately, led by the newly-elected president Romy Ominga and his wife, Chie and his officers, including Myra Rosario, 1st vice-president, with Mario, the immediate past president; and Danny Amoyo, 2nd vice president together with his wife Remy, treasurer, and their family friends, Jun and Vivian David left for the Philippines not to escape the frigid winter but to personally distribute their donations to those who needed most.
Larry and Tova Vickar and the Transcona Rotary have been personally involved in building shelters in the Camiguin Islands. Larry, CEO and president of Vickar Auto Group, together with his wife, Tova, have been travelling to the Philippines and personally engaged in various charitable activities. There are more than 30 homes and one Larry and Tova Vickar Multipurpose Building have been built for the people of Camiguin Island to enjoy having their own homes and place for meetings and hometown celebrations.
Last December, at the height of frenzy charitable work to help the victims of the Haiyan typhoon which hit the Central Philippines, the UMAC Express Cargo of Winnipeg,led by husband and wife, Garry and Aida Montierro, led the way to pack more than 150 boxes for personal distribution to the devastated areas in Samar and Leyte. Larry Baguisa, the CEO and president of UMAC Express Cargo will be jetting to the PHilippines to supervise personally the distribution of relief goods donated by thousands of Filipinos and Canadian friends in Winnipeg and Manitoba, especially mentioned, the 40 box-contribution of the South East Filipino Associations of Steinbach and the Filipino Associations in Brandon.
The Bicol Associaiton, led by its president, Amado Mendoza, under the medical mission of the Catanduanes International, is also involved in a person to person charitable initiative. In Winnipeg, the officers and members of the Bicol Associations solicit donations of medicines and medical instruments and seek doctors and nurses to join the medical mission in the Philippines. And also Dr. Tom Colina, KOR,of Pearl Family Dental and Ellice Dental, who personally organizes and joins dental medical missions to help the less fortunate people who could not afford dental services.
The Mennonites and other religious groups have been involved in the person-to-person charitable work and experience the greatest act of sharing and giving.
There is a different feeling when you distribute the donations personally. It is a reality check. And you are carried away by the “faces of needs” in the crowd. And I did feel the same excitement when I was involved in the various charitable initiatives of the Rotary Club, the Lions Club and the Jaycees and the UST Christmas gift-giving to the Sampaloc residents. There is a feeling of completeness, of love of sharing and the very meaning of Christian virtue.
On the other hands, some groups have to raise fund and channel their raise funds to the Canadian Red Cross and other international charitable agencies. The “Show Philippines” a musical extravaganza, organized by Ron Cantiveros and sponsored by many companies, endorsed the amount collected to the Manitoba Red Cross; The Street Festival, FSGW, Pangasinan Group of Manitoba and Sugbo, led by Aida Champagne and the proceeds was donated to Hope Worldwide of Canda; the Manitoba Council of Canadian Filipino Associations Inc. (MaCCFA) and Filipino Candian Technical Professional Association of Manitoba (FCTPAM) collections were given to Manitoba Red Cross; and various groups and individuals directly donated their cash donations to the Manitoba Red Cross and to other religious groups. And the Canadian Federal and the provincial governments which had donated tremendous cash and through Prime Minister Stephen Harper offered overseas services.
Either ways, helping less fortunate people is an indomitable experience to be had and to be shared.
In a subtle way, helping people face to face makes you happier and more blessed for you have foundhow lucky you are to live in this country of plenty, Canada, our chosen country which provides all the opportunities in life and to top them all, thanks for the God’s blessing.
“Beareth all things, believed all things, hopeth all things, endure all things. Charity never faileth.”
I Corinthians: 13.7-8