Tuesday, February 7, 2017

D'Project 12: Treats to Diura Village kids

My first outreach in Batanes was way back 2013 on my birthday when I asked my guide then, Ryan Cardona that I had a few things to give out to kids. He brought me to Diura Fishing Village. You can read about it on this link click here. I wanted to visit them again after three years.

Because of the intermittent internet and network connections after the typhoon that hit Batanes last September 2016, I had a hard time contacting Ryan. I then decided to have an outreach in Sabtang. Click here for the documentation.

When I sat on the plane going to Batanes last December 2016, there I saw a familiar face.
Small world. Ryan was also on his way back home and . . .  we were seat mates.

 We did some catch up during the flight and then decided to continue with a simple gift-giving to Diura.

ryan cardona
Groceries in Batanes is a little pricey than in Manila since the only way is via ship.
I was only able to buy a few because of the budget I had but I think the Ivatan kids appreciated it.
By the way, no sponsorship from the brand names on the photos.

Happily packing the treats.

ann d explorer

Thank you to my wonderful Basco host, Ate Sylvia Lameda for making me stay at her house always when I am in Basco and for helping me pack too.

The treat bags.

Ryan brought boxes of pencils and crayons too.

Thank you to Ryan and his travel agency, BISUMI tours and services
For the coordination, transportation, companionship and support.
Click the link in case you may want to visit Batanes and get their services.

Not all of these kids are studying in Diura but they live in Diura.

This is Teacher Rachel, the new teacher in Diura.

We started with games since we had extra treats.

The girls were very competitive and won the first contest.

d'project outreach

But then the boys owned the dance floor!

The final 3 dancers.

Then it was time to give out the treats.
 Before that, testing the action cam for documentation.

Assisted by the Cardona kids, Rhean and Yancy.

Ryan helping out with the distribution.


Dora the Explorer helps out on the distribution too.

diura batanes

The Diura kids sang a song for us.

Christmas song for us.


Dios Mamahes to Ryan Cardona, wife Thelma and daughters.
Bisumi Tours and Services.
Driver JP.

with Rhean

with Yancy.

With Thelma Cardona in maroon, Yancy and Ivatan locals.

We hope you could be part of our next D'Projects in seeing more kids smile.

For our previous D'Projects, click here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

D'Project 11: Savidug, Sabtang, Batanes

It all started at this place.
I visited Batanes once again in July 2016 and there was a super typhoon that time.
We were stranded an extra day at the island.
I would always go to this place because of the hammock. It was soooo relaxing to lay down there.
Every time I travel, I take time to get to know the place, the people and the culture and see if there is also an opportunity to help out the community.

ann d explorer

To get to Batanes, I booked a flight.
It was pretty heavy on the pocket because we do know how expensive it is to go to Batanes. But it was okay. I made a commitment and it is for the Savidug kids.
I was rejected by Skyjet and Wakay Air and ignored by Philippine Airlines for an ex-deal.

This was my first time to bring a huge box and I got stressed because I did not know if they would let me have it checked-in. If yes, how much damage it was and if no, I have to send it via cargo which will cost me money and time.

God was in control and He gave me favor.

 I reached Basco airport after an hour and 15 minutes.
Kuya Lito Alcantara, a tricycle driver who takes tourists around gave me a ride to San Vicente port in Ivana which will take I'd say 20 minutes.

I took the Falluwah (boat) to Sabtang port which took me 30 minutes.

ann d explorer

Sabtang Island.

My Sabtang tour guide and former PTA president of Savidug Barrio Elementary School, Ismael Haro, was the one I coordinated with  on this project.

He said the school does not have any musical instruments.

FYI, Barangay Savidug is a small village with 200 people.

The school has 22 kids.

As usual, I posted this project in Facebook and friends were always generous to help out.

This is Ismael and his tricycle.
ann d explorer

I got all the musical instruments from BR Bansil Music Store where the owners gave me a good deal and they did a good job in packing the instruments.

It was the holiday season and the school principal was not at the school since she lives in another barangay. This is Teacher Leweilyn Almeda. She is the OIC when the principal is not around and handles Kindergarten.

Savidug sabtang Batanes

We brought a Guitar, Ukelele, Cymbals, Organ, Beat box, Snare drums, Xylophone, Maracas and Tambourines. A bonus of two basketballs.
Savidug Sabtang Batanes

Savidug Sabtang Batanes

With Teacher Almeda as I turnover the instruments and basketball.

Some of the kids came by and we let them explore the instruments.

They were very happy.
They did not know how to play.
Teacher said they will need to hire someone to teach them how to use the instruments. 

Savidug Sabtang Batanes

They were the few kids who I made friends with when I got to the island. They were following me everywhere. Holding my hands and hugging me. We had language barrier but I felt the love from these kids.

This is Jessa. She always visits me. She wasn't in the school when I did the turnover but when I showed her the photos of the instruments, she immediately gave me a tight hug and said "Thank you ma'am. Thank you ma'am" I wanted to cry at that very moment.

The kids were not complete because some of them were on vacation.


With the Teachers
Vanneza Hontomin - Grade 5 and 6
Jennifer Entela - Grade 3 and 4
Nicey Ramos - Grade 1 and 2

Why do I always fall for the "wacky shot"?

For all the sponsors, the kids of Savidug Barrio School, the parents, the Savidug locals, the teachers, the Ivatans (Batanes locals) and I sends out the love back at you for your generous hearts.

Here's a simple presentation from the big kids to show their appreciation to all the sponsors.


Lito Alcantara as my tricycle service in Basco.
(for trike tour - 0908.216.7440 or 0916.229.1080)

Ismael Haro for the trike service and when he and his wife opened his house for me.
(trike tour - 0921.294.9968)

Savidug's Barangay Captain Rowell Cervillon for the donations.

 For more of the previous D'Projects, check the link.

We hope to see you in our future projects making more kids happier!