By Emiko Perea
During the COVID-19 pandemic, people throughout the world are struggling to keep up with their livelihood and maintain access to food and this reality is no different in the Philippines. Global Peace Women (GPW) Philippines coordinator, Ah-Na Marie Mira, developed a project that aimed to provide relief for families affected by the COVID-19 lockdown. She worked together with the government and a local school to deliver rice to 510 families in the Cardona, Rizal community.
Four hundred packs of rice were delivered in late March and another 110 were delivered in April. Some of the families came by Ana Mira’s residence to pick up the food sacks themselves. The majority of families who received these food packs had heads of their households unable to work during the quarantine, including construction workers, public utility vehicle drivers, and street vendors.
The project was made possible by the donations that primarily came from other women leaders from the Inner Wheel Clubs in IWC District 380. It was also thanks to the combined efforts of the Local Government Unit of Barangay Looc in Cardona, Rizal, and the public school teachers of Looc Elementary School with GPW Philippines for distributing the food packs.
This project mobilized friends, family, and the community to help others during the lockdown, demonstrating the strength of a community that is banded together to serve others, making a big difference during a crisis. Not only did it provide essential items to those in need, but the project also moved people’s hearts to support each other more in various aspects of daily life. “Sometimes helping others is not easy, especially in events when you personally or your own family needs help. I admire those people like you who are always finding ways to end their hands in times of difficulty. You are a blessing to our community! I am proud to be one of your volunteers…” said Catherine Concepcion, a Public School Teacher and GPW volunteer.
GPW Philippines plans to continue distributing food packs for the people still working heroically for their communities during the COVID-19 lockdown: soldiers, police officers, and medical staff. They already started raising funds with their partners for this next project. If they raise more than expected, than they will be able to distribute soap, sanitizers, disinfecting alcohol, and facemasks as well.
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