517 Shoe Giving with Community Kids of Ilaya Alabang

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Written by Core Team Member, Edelma Sy

It’s back to school season once again as we usher in the month of June! It’s an exciting time for students as it marks new beginnings in their young lives – new teachers, new learnings, new friends, and for the community children of Ilaya, Alabang, new shoes! :D Last June 7, through the efforts of Ate Lora Tan-Garcia who brought together generous sponsors for the children’s shoes, we were able distribute 159 pairs of black leather school shoes and helped the kids complete their back to school checklists.

When we arrived at the venue, which was at Jollibee Ground Floor, Lianas Supermarket, Alabang, we were met with a long queue of expectant faces waiting outside the store. After sorting the pre-labeled shoes by the kids’ names, we divided the kids into eight groups and let them inside to sit in circles. By the time all the kids were seated, the air was already thick with anticipation for what was in store for them.

We began the activities with an improvised game of “Rock, Paper, Scissors” . The kids were given 5 rubber bands each, and they were to play against their groupmates. If they won, they would take one rubber band from their opponent then move to another challenger, until five minutes was over. The kid with the most number of rubber bands wins. All the winners from each of the groups received a storybook for their prize.

Our team, along with Ate Lora and her family, then started distributing food to the children after a young girl led us in a short prayer. When they were done eating, they were shown a dance performance from our very charming, well-loved guest – Jollibee! :D

When he finished showing us his moves, we all gathered in the corner of the room for a photo op with Jollibee. The kids were very happy as they flocked around the mascot, holding his hands and squeezing his fingers. :D He then bade goodbye to give way to the highlight of the event which was the shoes giving proper! :D As Kuya Harvard read their names aloud, the children came to the front to receive their new pair of school shoes. Ate Lora’s sons, Lucas and Josh, readily helped us hand out every box of shoes, and it was very heartwarming to witness kids, who at a very young age, already know the value of helping and being kind toward other people.

The last surprise of the day was when we were flooded with beautiful “Thank You” cards and letters from the children, expressing their gratitude for the gift they received. These forms of appreciation are proof that kindness and generosity blesses not only the one who receives, but also the one who gives.

 
 
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