Since living in Manila, I have been a member of a group of ladies called ALIG (Alabang Ladies International Group)…basically a social and charitable group of women from all over the world, who through work postings have found themselves living out in the suburbs of Manila in our neighborhood of Alabang…and I’ve found great friends through ALIG, but hadn’t yet felt like I’d found my “place”, but more recently I have joined the ALIG Charity team after seeing the amazing efforts to feed evacuees who were forced from their homes due to massive flooding in the Philippines. The feeding program began over six weeks ago, and was feeding over 1,000 victims DAILY…over the last 2 weeks we have gone to feeding evacuees three times a week and are still operating only on donations from ALIG members and their family and friends. We meet daily around 8:30am to prepare the coolers of rice, sausage and egg that we will serve to the evacuees that day.
Today we visited the South Side Dumpsite, which is basically exactly what it sounds like. It is an area that the government uses for a landfill, and poor families have “moved in” surrounding it (literally their homes are ON the landfill and dumpsite) in order to scavange for things to sell such as bottles, plastic etc. These families live in conditions you simply cannot imagine until you see them…I had to wait to get home to cry the first time I visited because I didn’t want the residents to be embarrassed.
ALIG funds a visit to the Dumpsite each Friday where we bathe over 60 children from the site and feed them a hot meal. Here are some images from our visit today, you can see that some of the kids do not even have clothes to wear so they spend their entire day running around the filth completely naked. I think after two years of living here, I have finally begun to feel like I am spending my time wisely , and I hope to be able to continue to work with the Charity Team for the remainder of my time in the Philippines…xxHDLK