Manila Orientation: #UnboundAdventure Philippines Journal

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Philippines Journal Unbound

Tonight, we had our first real “bonding experience” as a group when all of the members of our Awareness Trip gathered for dinner (yes, at Kenny Rogers) and a program meeting with the Unbound Association of Philippines Progject (APP) staff.

Our evening kicked off with dinner at Kenny Rogers

Our evening kicked off with dinner at Kenny Rogers

Unbound in the Philippines

Legazpi Project Director Gari orients us to Unbound in the Philippines

Legazpi Project Director Gari orients us to Unbound in the Philippines

Unbound, formerly the Christian Foundation for Children and Aging (CFCA), began their work in this amazing country in 1988. Through the support of donor sponsors like the men and women on my trip, services are offered to more than 45,800 children and elders here in five program areas: Antipolo, Legazpi, Manila, Quezon, and Zamboanga. Over the next week, we will meet sponsored friends from all of these regions and witness firsthand the work enabled by sponsor participation.

Tonight’s orientation was not only a great overview of Unbound’s work, but also a helpful education on the history, government and socioeconomic circumstances of this fascinating country. Made up of over 7,000 islands, the country has a labor force of 39.81 million people. Over one million Filipinos work outside the country in jobs such as nursing and domestic work. Unemployment rates here are 6.7% and it is estimated that 40-60% of the population lives at a poverty rate of only $2 per day or less.

Gin-gin of @unboundorg welcomes our #unboundadventure group to #philippines by teaching us the #unboundorg clap!

A video posted by Lisa Hendey (@lisahendey) on

It’s easy to see why the need exists for a program such as Unbound, which is aimed not only at providing support but even more so at equipping sponsored families to grow their own capacity and unlock their potential… to truly empower the families served.

The funds donated by sponsors go to Unbound’s program areas, which include:

  • Formal and non-formal education
  • Service scholarships
  • Socio-cultural development
  • Spiritual development and values formation
  • Health and nutrition
  • Livelihood development
  • Community building
  • Special projects including family assistance, crisis intervention, burial, housing, care for environment, disaster risk reduction, community outreach, bloodletting and blood banking, and vocation awareness programs.
Orientation for our Awareness Trip team members gave us the chance to learn more about Unbound and each other.

Orientation for our Awareness Trip team members gave us the chance to learn more about Unbound and each other.

After reviewing our code of conduct and statement of purpose information, we received lovely gifts from the Unbound team, including the multicolored t-shirts that will be our uniforms for the next few days as our trip takes us out into Unbound’s mission territory!

Our Unbound uniforms for the week!

Our Unbound uniforms for the week!

The jet lag is beginning to kick in so I will sign off tonight with “Magandang gabi”. Be sure to tune in tomorrow for more from Manila!

My patron saints for this adventure will be St. Lorenzo Ruiz of Manila and his companions, who gave their lives for their faith, and Nuestra Señora de Guia (Our Lady of Guidance). Please join me in praying for Our Lady’s intercession in the work of Unbound and for the courage and conviction of St. Lorenzo to lovingly reach out to those most in need.

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Copyright 2016 Lisa M. Hendey

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About Author

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of CatholicMom.com and the bestselling author of the Chime Travelers children's fiction series, The Grace of Yes, The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. As a board member and frequent host on KNXT Catholic Television, Lisa has produced and hosted multiple programs and has appeared on EWTN and CatholicTV. Hendey hosted “Catholic Moments” on Radio Maria and is the technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show. Lisa's articles have appeared in Catholic Digest, National Catholic Register, and Our Sunday Visitor. Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and Catholic technology and communications topics. She was selected as an Elizabeth Egan Journalism Fellow, attended the Vatican Bloggers Meeting, the “Bishops and Bloggers” meeting and has written internationally on the work of Catholic Relief Services and Unbound. Hendey lives with her family in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Visit Lisa at www.LisaHendey.com for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish or organization.

2 Comments

  1. Have a wonderful visit. My wife and I will never forget the heart-melting experience we were given about ten years ago, though ours was not an official Unbound Awareness Trip. Nonetheless, the staff put together an amazing visit with my sponsored child. We will never forget them or the exceptional efforts the staff must have gone through to make our visit possible. We were, and remain so to this day, utterly over-whelmed by the wonderful manner in which we were treated.
    We will never forget.

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