Monday, November 14, 2011

Rainbows of This World

When was the last time you’ve seen a rainbow? Can you still recall it? The question is a bit funny but I’m serious about asking it. Why am I asking this? Because this question (about a rainbow) simply reminds me of hopes, inspirations, strengths, motivations, challenges, and changes.

It was last October 23, 2011 (Sunday) when I was heading my way to Manila Zoo for U! Happy Events’ “Care for Rare”, which was sponsored by Ate Malou. It was a fine morning when suddenly, rain poured. The sudden rainfall gave me a dilemma because I haven’t brought my umbrella and I wasn’t expecting the day to be a bit rainy. But to my ease, the rain just lasted for minutes and as the FX approaches the Quezon City Memorial Circle, a rainbow catches my attention. It appeared gloriously in the sky as if it was telling me that my problem is over and I don’t need to worry much for everything will be alright.

The feeling was quite funny because as far as I can remember, the last time I saw a rainbow was when I’m still in my early age. It was the age of my triumph as a child where the world is not really hard to live in and that life is just a matter of laughs and cries for simple things that were not granted. It was also those years when my father used to point at the rainbow telling me the word “rainbow”, but the only problem was that I can barely see it with my own naked eyes due to its nearly invisible state. It was a fun, yet melodramatic moment for me to reminisce. Then, my simple moments with my early years were turned into thoughts of reality regarding the significance of a rainbow in our lives.

Rainbows are reminders that every obstacle will end in time and that the future will [still] shine as bright as before. That life has to go on and we shouldn’t be afraid of its twists and turns for it is meant for us to become smarter, stronger, and sharper. Rainbows are our comfort-givers and our deliverers of hope. They can simply be likened to people we admire, people we aspire, and people we look up to, whom we met along the way. They are the people who made a difference in our lives.

Rainbows are like the unsung heroes of yesterday, who molded our pasts and gave valuable meanings to the world that we are currently enjoying; they are like extraordinary men and women of Asia, whom we know as the great Ramon Magsaysay Awardees; they are like the new breed of public servants of “Kaya Natin! A Movement for Ethical Leadership and Good Governance”, whom we know as champions of good governance; they are like the passionate young leaders, whom I met during the “Youth Leaders for Knowledge and Development” program of World Bank and Ateneo School of Government; they are like the volunteers and founders of Gawad Kalinga, U! Happy Events and other NGO’s, who sincerely and wholeheartedly serve this nation; they are like our teachers and mentors, who tirelessly and continuously give their very best just to make sure that we’ll pursue the right track towards greatness; they are like the ordinary citizens of this country, who pursue excellence, goodwill, and honesty in order for this nation to prosper; and most especially, they are like our parents, whom we got our values and characters.   

All of them are not just ordinary individuals. They are people, who show what humanity is all about. They are rainbows of this world. When calamities arise and problems soar, they serve to be our symbol of hopes and our primary source of strengths. They are the first to stand up and the last to give up. They are the reason of our progress and the answer to our sufferings. And as the day comes to an end, we are sure that there’s a beautiful tomorrow still waiting for us. And as long as there are still rainbows emerging in our lives, we know that our children still have a future to look up to. They sure have everything that we could ask for. But, there’s still missing beyond their pursuit towards greatness – us! We are the missing piece and we hold the key to help them continue what they’ve started.

We should strive to be an inspiration to other people as much as how they’ve strived to inspire us. They need us as much as we needed them. And yes, we deserve to be saved but, we are also meant to save other people as well. All that’s left now is our choice – the choice to become part of their growing ranks, to be change-makers of our own, to be heroes to people in need, to be the source of strength to the weak, and to be the rainbow of this country. It is up to us to decide whether we only want to witness change or we extremely want to become part of change. It is time to decide now! Let’s act responsibly! Let’s all become rainbows in this world and become deliverers of hopes, inspirations, strengths, motivations, challenges, and changes!

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Box O’ Fun: Beyond Usual Celebrations

Volunteering for U! Happy Events gave me an opportunity to know different kinds of foundations that are present here in the Philippines and gave me a much wider perspective in knowing the field that I’m trekking – Nation-building.
U! Happy Events is a foundation for kids that acts as a bridge linking companies, volunteers, communities, and different foundations. It is like a portal that provides an instant connection between individuals, who are capable of giving help, and individuals, who extremely need help. It is a perfect tool for people, who would want to elevate their role in their respective community - from being ordinary citizens to becoming effective change-makers.

Most of the time, volunteers and partners of U! Happy Events develop a sense of responsibility for the community and for the nation every time they partake in the different events and advocacies of this foundation. And as a result, they would continue to give their time, effort, and resources in order to reach out to people in need and to fully exercise their capacity to give.

Through the years, some of the previous events that had materialized were sponsored by volunteers, organizations, and regular sponsors who would want to take a much higher step in making their impact to the society. And one of those sponsors who had decided to take this kind of step was FunLiPix.

FunLiPix is an on-site photo booth that provides photo souvenirs for different occasions (including U! Happy Events’ very own) and has been around the business for two years now. Last October 29, 2011 marks their 2nd year anniversary and the people behind this company chose to celebrate this momentous event by partnering with U! Happy Events. And as a result of this partnership, an event was materialized and was successfully concluded. This event was entitled “A Box O’ Fun” and was held at the Fun Ranch, Ortigas.

“A Box O’ Fun” was celebrated with the kids of New Faith Family Home and it gave joy to them as they participate in different activities prepared by the organizers such as kiddie rides, magic shows, face painting, balloon twisting, mascots, clowns, and stilt walkers’ exhibition, raffle and games, and [of course] photo booth. The entire event was a mixture of fun and excitement and was made even more exciting when celebrity endorsers arrived at the venue and spearheaded the giving of gifts.

It was during this kind of moment when a kid would come to realize that he or she is not really alone; that he or she is being loved and being taken care of; that there are still people willing to support him or her; and that his or her life is still valuable and worth living. After all, these kids are not really the unfortunate ones. Even though they were abandoned by their original parents, they can [still] be considered fortunate because they witness what unconditional love really means and they experience what real care gives. These kids may lack the love of real parents, but they do have the love of real people… People, who are willing to take the risk just to give them what they really deserve.
As the event comes to an end, one would observe that every kid bears with them the joy that shines from within, the hopes that were rebuilt, the dreams that were regained, and the love that were reclaimed. All of these things are a product of everyone’s effort in providing joy and creating a deep sense of impact to the lives of these kids. This is what real people do and this is what real anniversary celebration should be. The event may have finally been concluded and efforts may have been repaid. But for the people behind FunLiPix, it’s just the beginning of reaching out, making a difference, and creating an impact to the society.   

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