Gawad Kalinga Service 2005

Thank You Gawad Kalinga
(Bro Vic DeLeon, Epsilon Psi/82A, #10370)

Brother President Mody Olympia along with Service Chairman Brother Anthony Busog led APODCAA volunteers to lend a helping hand to the very first Gawad Kalinga EXPO held at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in the metro Washington, DC area on November 20, 2005. Serenaded all day long by music from the group “Asin” to the tunes of Kapaligiran and Bayan Ko, APODCAA once again demonstrated its commitment and dedication to “do a good turn daily.”

From the words of Mr. Shaun Guevarra, this year’s project director:

“Thank you for the work of spreading the news of Gawad Kalinga and realizing the true nature of this movement. In the end, WOW GK is not about fundraising or charity work, but about restoring the hope and dignity of the poor in the Philippines. It’s about showing the world that amidst all the corruption and terrible conditions in our motherland, the spirit of the Filipino is strong and worthy. Bayanihan in action is happening right now here in Metro Washington DC, it is this spirit of community and volunteerism that will truly allow us to say that there will be no more slums in the Philippines and this movement will spread around the globe with the Philippines as a jewel once more leading the way to restoration.

This Sunday, in the most powerful city in one of the most powerful nations in the world, the message of hope and restoration of home and spirit will be heralded to over 1800 people. More than 10,000 people will have heard and witnessed the power of GK in the Philippines within this past month, and the 15,000 families that have been raised from the 3rd world conditions in the past 2 years will gain in momentum, and more and more families will have their lives changed and the futures opened.”

No task was too big or too small for this bunch of unselfish volunteers which made it all the more gratifying for me. Although APODCAA was originally tasked to build the “shanty town,” the work spilled over into the area of simulated Gawad Kalinga finished community, and more. It was a good experience collaborating with other volunteer groups focused on a single mission –complete the task at hand and make the simulated GK community presentation as close to reality as possible. This is quite a sight to see.

At the end of the day, I couldn’t help but feel so inspired and truly blessed to have had the opportunity to participate in this worthy Service project. Imagine the feeling of great satisfaction knowing our efforts somehow will have a positive impact in the lives of our less-fortunate kababayans. And for that, a humble thank you Gawad Kalinga and Mr. Shaun Guevarra for giving us the chance to make a difference.

Participants: Mody Olympia, Ding Gomez, Rudy Magsalin, Santi & Lulu Sipin plus daughters Pauline and Claudine, Vic DeLeon, Doods Castellano plus wife Brenda and son Benzi, Ed Narvacan, Ellen Dayrit, Dennis Arellano [plus guest], Anthony Busog

Photos courtesy of Bro Doods

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