Photo: Girls enrolled in our Children’s Hope Center program are excelling in school thanks to our nutrition program and after-school tutoring.
Since we last reported on our Manila Children’s Hope Center, Christmas has passed, and we want to give you an update on how the children enjoyed the season. Our loving staff and volunteers threw a Christmas party for 120 children who are enrolled in our Hope Center program as well as children from the local community. The children enjoyed singing Christmas songs, participating in a dancing competition, and playing Bible verse memory games and various local recreational games and activities. The children also enjoyed a delicious meal of spaghetti, fried chicken, bread rolls, and apples.
Thanks to your support, the children were very thankful to receive Christmas gifts such as new T-shirts for the boys and new blouses for the girls, new bath towels, and Noche Buena food baskets containing spaghetti noodles and a ham. One of our teachers reports: “We are very thankful for your support to give our children a joyful Christmas celebration. Thank you so much for the unending love, and we always pray for your good health and success in all your endeavors. We are very thankful to all of the donors who made the event possible.”
Our team also recently organized a “Sembreak” (semester break) Bible study gathering which occurs four times a year. 30 children (ages 12-20) attended during this quarter, and they enjoyed a fun time of fellowship together where they learned about life truths taught by Jesus and how to build their character through the medium of Bible-focused activities. The children also enjoyed a feast of popular Filipino food such as Adobong Manok chicken (cooked in soy sauce with vinegar and other spices), Pancit (Filipino noodles), and orange juice.
The 90 children enrolled in our Children’s Hope Center after-school care program are currently studying and receiving tutoring in math, English, their native Filipino language, science, social studies, technology, skill development, music, art, and physical education in grades 1-6, and algebra, geometry, calculus, English, the Filipino language, biology, chemistry, physics, social studies, technology, and skill development in junior high. Our team also continues to focus on literacy, thus, most of the children have reached the average speed of reading for their respective age levels — we are very proud of their hard work and diligence.
We want to share the story of one of the children enrolled in our Children’s Hope Center and how it has transformed her life in ways she could never have imagined. Here is the story of 16-year-old Rosa*, told in the words of one of the faithful teachers at the Hope Center:
Our director started doing a meal service program in 2009 on her own and then Peace Gospel started supporting us in 2013 allowing us to expand the project to an after-school care program. My siblings and I were beneficiaries of this humanitarian effort and I witnessed how our children grew with your program. In this report I want to tell you about our child named Rosa. She is currently 16 years old and in the 9th grade. Rosa became a beneficiary of the program in 2012. At that time she was only 10 years old and in the 4th grade, so she has been with us for about 7 years.
Her father died during the first year that she was with us. Her father was a scavenger and passed away because of a heat stroke and fatigue due to working at a dumpsite. Rosa is the youngest of her 7 siblings. Her mother raised these 7 children by selling restored bags. These bags are collected from garbage trucks and dumpsites. They wash, clean, and repair the bags so that they can sell them at the local market. Rosa, her mother, and her siblings live on 200-400 pesos ($3.85-$7.70) per day.
Rosa is a very industrious and active child. In spite of her life situation, she manages to get good grades and score at the top of her class. She is inspired by our Bible studies and has improved her communication skills and confidence through collaborating with other children in the program. Through our tutorials, she has also learned that the extra work helps her improve in her academic studies.
Rosa is a consistent honor student in her class and dependable when she is given various tasks. In the last 2 years, we appointed her to be one of our youth that organizes and assists our younger children. Rosa is one of the children’s leaders and she is very mature. Through our help and activities, we have contributed to her personality and growth. I am very proud of her and recognize this child because of her determination and intelligence. Rosa dreams of becoming a lawyer someday and I believe that she can reach her dream.
We thank you for your continuous support and love. Because of this program, we are producing excellent individuals that will change and improve the community. God bless!
Take a Closer Look: view more photos from this project and others
* Names are changed to protect our program beneficiaries.