Often, school attendance is unaffordable for children coming from poor families. However, a decent education is the source of a better future and the only chance to escape the vicious circle of poverty – even more so in the Philippines.
Therefore, in our Children’s Village we offer former street kids the opportunity to go to school – a luxury for those children.
Lend your scholar your support – from elementary school to graduation. Accompany your scholar and observe her or his constant development. If you wish you can even visit your scholar here in the Philippines.
Following, you can read the report of a sponsor who had visited her scholar Mariebel in the Children’s Village.
Two years ago I’ve got Mariebel, my second girl. My three adult children are blond, tall and of sturdy build. Meanwhile Mariebel is twelve years old with an olive-brown complexion, long black hair, and slender limbs. It’s a pleasure to watch her, every color she is wearing glows. She moves incredibly swiftly, she loves to laugh, dance, and sing. She plays in front of the Yellow, the Blue, or the Purple House with Elaine, Randy, Kinkin, and all the others. The children live in those colorful houses in domestic cummunities together with their housemothers. Mariebel and the other girls sit on the shady porch when it’s too hot. Then she takes care of little Mary Joy or she plays Skipo with the others. In the evenings she helps Mama Che in the kitchen, washes her school uniform and goes to bed early because she has to get ready for school at half past five in the mornings. Mariebel goes to school willingly and mastered her second year successfully. In her letters she regularly and proudly gives proof of her learning progress.
How do I know her so well?
Well, Mariebel is my scholar/godchild, a girl that I want to care for because my own children are grown up and financially independent. She is one of the unbearably many underprivileged children with no chance in this world. And I want to enable her to find a way into a brighter future.
This spring, Martin gave me the opportunity to get to know Mariebel, the Children’s Village, Mindanao, the Philippines.
For four weeks I’ve been sharing everyday life with the children. I’ve been sitting with them at the table, playing with them on the porch, and admiring their almost unlimited energy in playing ball games of any kind on the big square in the center of the Children’s Village. I went to school with Mariebel, talked with the principal and her teacher and spent one morning in the classroom at Nanyo Elementary School.
Only accidently I had a peek into Mariebel’s first life. Together with Elaine, Mariebel’s friend from the Yellow House, we drive to Panabo by tricycle. First, the girls want to show me the municipal park. Both have ten pesos each and cannot decide how they want to spend the money confronted with all the treasures that are sold in those small stalls. Back and forth they go, but finally Mariebel chooses a small necklace with a cross trinket. We stroll on. Suddenly, she runs towards two young boys and hugs the shorter one very enthusiastically. “That’s Marmar, Mariebel’s brother“, Elaine explains. Marmar, the skinny, dirty boy who looks like a five-year-old, but actually is seven already, belongs to the strays who stay in the park day and night. “He needs food!“ Elaine takes control over the situation and helps me to get over the overwhelming shock by letting me help Marmar. When parting, Mariebel hugs her brother one last time and puts the little cross trinket around his gaunt neck.
Time flies by fast. For me, the day of my departure begins as early as five in the morning. It’s a Saturday and the children can sleep late. Only one of them is awake yet. Already in the car I see Mariebel crossing the big square. For the last time, I hug the drowsy girl. She really looks small and abandoned standing in front of the White House, ‘my‘ house for the last four weeks.
What is she thinking right now?
Will we see each other again?
I gave her a promise.