Share Your Blessings

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Birthday Project 2012 at Don Bosco School Manila

I really don’t know where to start. It’s been months already and I can still remember what happened during that day. Well, actually I can still recall the moment we decided to start and plan for this year’s Birthday Project. Since Coe has already shared a very good narration of what had happened, I’ll just share my side of the story. By the way, hands down to my good friend Coe for doing such a wonderful post. It’s her first time to do a narrative blog post as she’s more on the reflective and intellectual kind of write ups compare to mine. Hahaha! Good job Coekie!!! ^_^

Okay let’s start this looong narration of the event before the year ends!

banner by Nico Orillano

As soon as we got up, we followed up our suppliers and confirm the delivery time. While I was preparing the programme and other stuff, Coe and Ian went to Market Market to pick up 10 dozens of Pastel fresh from Camiguin! While they are getting those delicious treats I am confirming the headcount, volunteers and other suppliers for the day’s activity. After lunch, we all went to DBS to setup and prepare everything.

arranging the school’s New Canteen

volunteers preparing the materials

We were stationed at the New Canteen, very much different from the way I pictured it. So many things have changed but it’s all good. The volunteers arrived one by one and I was really happy to see them. It was fortunate that these good-hearted people trusted me coz I really don’t know most of them. We just communicated thru emails and SMS and there they are, very much willing to give a helping hand. We started with a prayer led by Ian to guide us for that momentous event.

grouping the children

The kids were already at the entrance and they were asked to fall in line in groups of 10. It was a bit disorganized but luckily was able to control it. Special thanks to my Grade School adviser, Ms. Pineda now Mrs. Oliveros for also helping us that day. The group leaders, known as Mother Goose/Father Goose were chosen to lead each group throughout the activity.


I first asked them their names and grade level before they head off to the food carts c/o Ton O Fun! The kids loved the cotton candy and popcorns! Who wouldn’t?!

asking their names and grade level

So after some sugar intake of these kids, we introduced ourselves and gave them a bit of a background of who we are and what we’re doing. We are hoping that they will get inspired and be grateful for the things they have may it be big or small.

group 1′s turn to enjoy the food carts

Here are the activities that day:

Create your own Party Hats

Father Goose of the group helping his team in making their party hats

We gave them pink strip of Pink Cartolina paper (c/o Nico) and a box of 24-pc crayons to test their artistic skills. It would be nice to see how they want their party hats to look like. Everyone was serious with their craft since we’re giving a prize to the best Party Hat-Nametag.

children fitting their party hats

After a few minutes, the volunteers picked the best hats on their group. We got the best 3 hats and eliminate by choosing the person who has the loudest clap from the audience. The winner by unanimous decision was Brenalyn.

best party hat winner, Brenalyn!

She even sang a song to us ‘coz the crowd was howling and teasing her to sing. She was shy at first but then sang “Hulog ng Langit” and everyone sang with her. Such a talented kid!

GAME 1 – Arrange Yourselves

arrange yourselves

checking if the arrangement is correct

The game was facilitated by Ian. We prepared 5 categories (Name in Alphabetical order, Height, Shoe Size, Birthday and Number of Siblings) but we had a tie. It was hard since everyone’s quite competitive. The tie breaker was the Grade Level category. Team 4 won the game.

team 4 winners

Welcoming the CCA Manila Team

CCA Manila Team

Finally, the star of the night has arrived. With the help of friend networking, we were able to collect more than 500 signatures who supports our cause. Because of this, the CCA Manila team generously sponsored the kid’s meal and even prepared some loot bags for them. The food they prepared for the kids: Spaghetti, Chicken Fingers with Gravy and a Choco Revel slice for dessert. They have drinks included too!

CCA Manila Team

The team consists of the following: Ms. Lovely, Chef Jel, Chef Regina, Chef Marge, Chef Jenny and Chef Camille

GAME 2 – Bring Me

While CCA Manila is preparing the food, we had our second game. The famous, Bring Me game!

Bring me the person who has the longest hair length!

As Coe said, we were literally “mobbed” during this game. Hahaha!

Food Distribution by CCA Manila

Sr. Carm starting the prayer before meals

Food distribution of CCA Manila

As soon as the CCA team finished preparing the food, Sr. Carm led the prayer before meals. A birthday song was sang afterwards before they enjoy the food that was prepared for them. Of course, group pictures per team is a must. The “most behaved” group was the first one to be called followed by the next and so forth.

Group Picture

Group Picture – photo grabbed from Coe’s blog

kids enjoying their meals

While the team was distributing the food, a special person came  and she’s none other than, Kcat Yarza. She was one of my inspirations to be strong, be grateful and be generous no matter what your circumstances are. She gave a bagful of goodies for the kids too! However, she can’t stay long since they are also celebrating the birthday of her sister, Talitha. It was so nice of her to drop by the school and say Hi to the kids.

special guest: Kcat Yarza


GAME 3 – Human Bingo

explaining the Human Bingo rules

After dinner and some rest time, another game was done. This time, a more challenging game that requires them to get to know the people who are with them that day. The Human Bingo is similar to a bingo game where they have to fill up the boxes to win. Each box contains a description of a person that they have to look for in the crowd. This will help them to mingle in a different manner.

signing and filling up the Bingo boxes

This time, considering the sugar level of these kids, it was chaotic! Literally! Running, shouting, name it! Hahaha! The first 10 who correctly completed the papers won and were given prizes which are lunch boxes sponsored by Nuffnang.


GAME 4 – Longest Line

Longest Line game

The final game was the Longest Line. I have to warn them not to take off their clothes. They were already preparing to remove their shirts! Team 1 won this game.

After all the activities, it is time to end the day. We thank them, gave some word of advice and they again sang a Birthday Song to us. It was tiring, starting with the conceptualization, preparations and on the day event but it was all very much worth it. Seeing the smiles and hearing the sound of their laughter are priceless!

distribution of Loot Bags

In the end, like all the children’s party, we gave them loot bags that consist of the following:

  • Canned goods from Apple Abalos and Baby Ozato
  • Noodles from Michelle Abalos
  • Pansit Canton from Rheena Sison-Panser
  • 1 kilo of Rice from Celia Abalos
  • Pastel Buns from Dr. Viel Vincent Jose 
  • Toothpaste from NuffNang Team
  • Ballpens from Bryle Ian Bolong
  • Small bag from Ralph Alcantara
  • Candies and Sweets from Kcat Yarza and Valeri Ann Chua
We also added from the sponsored fund:
  • Biscuits and Cream Sandwiches
  • 1 Toothbrush
  • 1 Bar of Soap
  • 1 box of 24-piece crayon

These are all made possible with the help of our generous sponsors who extended their help and supported our little project.

Coe & Me with the kid’s sweet Thank you messages

I’m happy that we were able to do this this year. I’m hoping that next year would be a better one. We are just a bunch of people sharing our blessings to our brothers and sisters. We wanted to show them that life is indeed beautiful and worth living whatever situation we are in. We just have to look at the brighter side of things.

Birthday Project 2012: DBS Street Kids

“This is the key to life: To expect everything to be given to you from above, yet to be genuinely surprised and forever grateful, when they are. Expecting all good things to be yours, while not knowing how to take anything for granted. If there may be a key in life, this is the key.” ― C. JoyBell C.

Venue – Don Bosco School Sta. Mesa, Manila
Food – Center for Culinary Arts Manila (CCA)
Food Carts – Ton O Fun 

Birthday Project 2012: Preparations 
Birthday Project 2012: Event Proper
Birthday Project 2012: Sponsors

You can also check Coe‘s blog post: Just Be  ^_^

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Birthday Project 2012: Sponsors

As mentioned, a separate page dedicated to our sponsors who didn’t hesitate to share their blessings to these kids. We were overwhelmed with the response and some of them were friends of our friends. Truly we are grateful for their big heart.

First and foremost, thank you to the FMA Sisters/Salesian Community for approving our Birthday Project to be held on their grounds, Don Bosco School, Sta. Mesa. To the Sisters, most especially to Sr. Ailyn, in-charge with the Oratories and Sr. Carmen who helped me during the planning and on the day preparations, thank you so much! During the event, Ms. Recci, my Grade 6 Adviser, was there to join and help us go about with our event. It was such a heart-warming experience to be back and see former teachers again.

The CCA Manila Team

Our major sponsor for the event was The Center for Culinary Arts Manila. They were very much willing and kind enough to sponsor the food for the street children. They not only prepared for the kids but also included the volunteers to taste their recipe made with love. They even had loot bags for the kids too!

Thank you to all those who signed up in our “Sign up for a Cause” campaign. Your participation means a lot to us. We had more than 500 names who supported our endeavor. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

Lovely Hollera, Marketing Officer of CCA Manila

Thank you Lovely Hollera, Marketing Officer of CCA Manila who is also my former bus mate for accommodating us in your busy schedule. May the CCA Team be blessed for having a generous and compassionate heart.

We also would like to thank all who donated in kind. Indeed, we appreciate everything we got no matter how big or small it is. To enumerate:

  • 10 dozens of Pastel from Dr. Viel Vincent Jose
  • 15 Lunchboxes and a bagful of Toothpastes from NuffNang Philippines
  • Candies and Sweets from KCat Yarza and Valeri Ann Chua
  • 50kg of Rice from Celia Abalos
  • Canned goods from Apple Abalos and Baby Ozato
  • Noodles from Michelle Abalos
  • Pansit Canton from Dhen & Rheena Sison-Panser
  • Ballpens from Bryle Ian Bolong
  • Small pouch bags from Ralph Alcantara
  • Event Banner/Tarp and Thank you cards from Nico Orillano

10 dozens of Pastel from Dr. Viel Vincent Jose

15 Lunchboxes and a bagful of Toothpastes from NuffNang Philippines

Candies and Sweets from KCat Yarza

Loot bags with both kind donations and things bought from cash donations

To sum up, we gathered Php 26,800 from the following sponsors (in random order):

  • Daven Arcega
  • Marian Encinas
  • Jim Duldulao
  • Catherine Lynn Tolosa
  • Patria Tolosa-Lee
  • Vic Calag
  • Xtian Fernando
  • Ralph Sacdalan
  • Fr. Filemon Dela Cruz
  • Radimir Relator
  • Gian Carlo Trinidad
  • Marissa Volante
  • Judith Clemente
  • Ginn Tolosa
  • Anna Katrina Dayo
  • Kilven John Tolosa
  • Aileen Magparangalan
  • Franco Telado
  • Josefina Prado
  • Jhoanna Anag
  • Bin Edres
  • Cha Roque
  • Orlando Claveria
  • Chris Valencia
  • Joyce Estanislao
  • Elyse Go
  • 3 persons wants to remain Anonymous

Since we got more than our target budget, we decided to donate the extra money to Unicef and World Vision. We split our donations in 2 so one is under my name and the other is under Coe’s name.

We donated Php 12, 100 to UNICEF (P6,050 under Coe’s and P6,050 under yours truly) and Php 3,000 to World Vision (P1,500 under Coe’s and P1,500 under yours truly).

Here’s the reply we got from UNICEF:

We also would like to thank the volunteers and visitors who celebrated with us even on a weekend! Their presence and service was a great help for the success of the event. We really are thankful for  Jhoie, Joey, Jhoanna, Issha, Aileen, Mitch, Apple, Ryan, Marian, Michelle, Kathleen, Elyse, Christian, Therese, Kcat and to our official photographer Nico!
Due to change of schedule, some of our friends didn’t make it. We also extend our gratitude to Faith and Fr. Caloiski who were supposed to be there and had a special part in the programme.

Mother Geese: Jhoanna, (ME), Issha, Jhoie, Therese, Aileen, (COE)

Me with Marian, Michelle and Kathleen

Elyse with Coe

Abalos Siblings

Kath & Coe with KCAT’s Family and Sr. Carmen

Of course, we are forever indebted to these two special men in our lives: Andrew Abalos and Ian Bolong. They were supportive as ever! As Coe said, thank you for being the “best runners”, drivers and personal assistant during the event. We wouldn’t make it without you guys on our side! Mwah Mwah, Tsup Tsup! Hahahaha! ^__^

Special mention to Abalos Family for accommodating us the night before the event. We all had a sumptuous meal c/o the girls in the family.

with my Andrew ^_^

with Coe’s Ian ^_^

I couldn’t think of a better conclusion for this post, instead I got this excerpt from Coe’s entry that says it all:

The success of an endeavor magnifies its greatness by how many lives you’ve affected and how many people you’ve touched. Thank you very much for the support and love… Kathleen and I are deeply loved and blessed.

Until next year… ^____^

Birthday Project 2012: Preparations 
Birthday Project 2012: Event Proper
Birthday Project 2012: Sponsors

You can check Coe‘s blog post: Just Be since she already published her side of the story. ^_^

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Birthday Project 2012: Preparations

As a prelude to my Birthday Project 2012 post, I decided to break it down for readability purposes not to mention my chance to stall the next write ups. Hahaha! Kidding aside, here’s the first part of our Birthday Project 2012 write up.

To start off, we’ve started planning mid September 2012 already. I know it’s a bit late for this kind of event we’re eyeing on but still we managed to stay calm and brainstorm what we want to achieve. If you’ve been following my blog, you already know that we had our birthday project in Grace to Be Born shelter last year. This year, we wanted something new and  a bit extravagant so we decided to host a party for less fortunate kids.

Initially, we just wanted to have 30 kids considering the budget we had last year. However, my conscience was pushing me to expand and stretch the number to 50 kids. It was a really difficult to decide especially that it’s our first time to do this. We do attend outreach programs but this is different since we will be the ones planning and executing everything. Nevertheless, we agreed. 50 kids, GO! Hahaha!

I communicated with Sr. Ailyn Cayanan, FMA of Don Bosco School Sta. Mesa to coordinate our plans. Since she said her approval, we started to do “the work”.

First things first… SPONSORS! We definitely need donations in Cash and In Kind so we formulated and discussed how to do about it. Of course our friends and relatives were the first ones in the list. Sharing it with friends of friends would be a bonus. With no time to spare, we started sending emails, posting e-cards, word of mouth, etc. Everything we can think of to extend our network and give them the opportunity to share.

Since then, positive responses and overwhelming generosity were seen considering a short time frame. I would enumerate who took part of our endeavor at the end part of my Birthday Project post. :)

Fast forward….

Coe & Kath at National Bookstore doing last minute shopping holding Thank You cards made by Nico Orillano

A day before the event, I decided to take a day’s off and start preparing for stuffs needed for the next day’s event. We bought additional stuff and eco bags for them. We’ve gathered all donations in kind and packed them together for the kid’s loot bags. The food and cart suppliers were also coordinated accordingly to be able to have a smooth sailing event.

Packing Time

It was a really a team effort that we stayed in one house just to prepare for the event. With this, I sincerely thank the Abalos’ family for welcoming us and helped us from the beginning up to the end of our project.

There were challenges encountered during the preparations but thankfully we all surpassed that and was able to execute what we had in mind.

Birthday Project 2012: Preparations 
Birthday Project 2012: Event Proper
Birthday Project 2012: Sponsors

You can check Coe’s blog post: Just Be since she already published her side of the story. ^_^

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Birthday Project 2012: Sponsors needed!

This would be the last week of September and would definitely extend the solicitation and donation request up until the 2nd week of October.

We are again asking for your kindness to be part of this project. Our initiative wouldn’t be possible and successful without your help.

Any kind of donation would be appreciated. A gift of presence and service is definitely okay. Just inform us ahead of time as I still need to coordinate transportation and food.

Here’s our e-card to be sent to friends via email:


Again, here’s how you can help us:

1. Cash Deposit via BPI or BDO

2. Paypal

3. In kind donation for the kid’s loot bags.

For In Kind donations, kindly prepare at least 50pcs of whatever it is you want to donate as we’re stretching our capacities and challenging ourselves to not only invite 30 street kids but accommodate up to 50 kids! It would be more fun and enjoyable seeing a lot of kids sharing and playing together.

Let’s all make this possible. Besides, it’s BER months already. You might want to give it to them not only as our birthday gift but a Christmas gift for them as well.

Thank you very much for your generosity.

God bless you kind hearts.

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Birthday Project 2012

Last year, I had my first birthday project for the benefit of Grace To Be Born foundation. It was a successful activity led by me and my friends. This project was also made possible by the kind donations of friends and family. And truly, I am very grateful.

This year, as much as I want to start early August to collate funds, I was caught up with life’s activities such as work and other extra curricular activities that made this update later than expected. I was hoping to start it on September 1st but unfortunately, I mistakenly deleted my birthday blog. I was trying to recover and fix everything but unfortunately I can’t deliver it as soon as possible. So, I temporary created a copy of my previous blog for me to be able to move on with this project. When I’m about to publish this post, I tried another tweak and poof! I was able to restore my Birthday blog! Yipee! ^_^

Anyway, I wanted to do something more than I did last year. With all the blessings that the Lord has given me, it’s just right to give back some love. With many charity institutions in the Philippines, listed in WikiPedia and not, I can’t decide what to pick. I narrowed down to somewhere close to my heart. In the end, I choose the Street Kids of DBS. Don Bosco School (DBS) is where I attended school half of my educational years (elementary & high school days) so these sisters are somehow responsible on who I am today.

Early this year, I was invited by DBS to give a talk/speech to the undergrads. That was such an honor for me and made me a little bit guilty not going back as often as I want. Because of this, I promise myself to return and be a blessing to them even in my own little ways. So this idea crossed my mind. I think, it’s time to give back. :)

The FMA sisters holds its oratory every Sunday. After the 7am mass, street kids are welcomed inside the campus and weekly catechism is held. Feeding program is also done from time to time but I’m not sure how often. I’ve been part of this Sunday activity when I was in high school. Maybe some of the kids I knew back then hopefully grew smarter and successful with the help of these kind sisters. Since every year, a lot of children are born and seen loitering around the streets, I’m sure I don’t know these kids anymore.

I’m still planning out what to do and when the celebration would be so at this point, there are no specific details yet. Most of them are just estimates. I still need to coordinate with DBS. It will probably held in mid October since I’m sharing this humble activity with a good friend Coe who will be celebrating her birthday on November. :)

Basically, our plan is to celebrate our birthday with the kids. It would be a fusion of a slight recollection that we normally do when we were in College and a children’s party. I hope we can pull off this plan of ours. A lot of brainstorming and planning is needed and I am already delayed in my target of starting this project last August 31. :)

For now, I need your generosity for our endeavor. Last year’s celebration was a success and everyone was happy. This year, I hope another fun filled day of sharing and joy to these kids will not only be a dream but a reality.

>(^_^)< Donate Now! >(^_^)<


To know more about the Salesian Sisters, you can check out this link: FMA Philippines
To know more about Don Bosco School Sta. Mesa, you can check out this link: DBS

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