As an OFW (Overseas Filipino Worker), I wonder from time to time whether the money I religiously remit back home does contribute greatly in helping out not just my family but also my country (thinking of the money I send as financial aid to our suffering economy). I know my country is poor and in very bad shape. The years pass and several presidents have come and go (either finished their term or removed from their seat of power) yet nothing concrete was still accomplished in addressing the widespread poverty plaguing my country. The illusions created by the current president are not enough to paint a rosy picture of a “stable country” capable of withstanding this global crisis, trying to cover and sweep under the rug the evidences of dirt poorness brought about by corruption, bad governance, massive consumption, overpopulation, low productivity and inadequate education among the people.
As an OFW, I always think nowadays how I could possibly contribute in helping out the poor back home. While I know that the money I remit to my family is just enough for their needs and could not possibly be shared to other people, I’m thinking of various ways on how to help out my poor fellowmen. As of now, I’m thinking of contributing my old stuffs, particularly my old shirts, and other usable clothing to any possible institutions back in Manila (ala Salvation Army like here in Singapore). I’d like to someday join my fellow office mate here who usually joins his other friends in spending their vacation in the Philippines doing Gawad Kalinga activities like helping out in building houses for the homeless. I like also the idea before of Bob (from Live In The Philippines) when he mentioned about him and his family buying and gathering some of their food from fast-food restaurants and distributing them to young beggars and street children near their vicinity. I know, there are many things that an OFW can do to help out the poor and needy in the Philippines but these are some of the ideas I can currently think of. Maybe someone out there have better ideas.
* * * *On the side note: Here are some other web links I find interesting, tackling the issue of poverty especially in the Philippines.
If you care about the poor, let's brainstorm for ideas.
Poverty is a simple issue.
Corned Beef (a moving article from Tingog.com)
Street Children of Manila (this links to good friend Sid's photo blog and his magnificent photographs of Manila's poor and yet smiling street children).