The Philippines is a country with a special place in my heart. At the age of 15, I visited the Philippines with my high school youth group. It was my first mission trip. God used it to open my eyes to His work around the world.
I discovered Manila, a city crowded with pollution and poverty, but also full of people who were innovative, hopeful and welcoming. I made friends who were passionate believers in Christ, ready to do anything He might call them to do. My Filipino friends became my models for discipleship, ultimately steering me in the direction of serving with Food for the Hungry.
That’s why my ears perked up when I learned about Camarines Norte, an area in the Philippines where FH is looking for a United States church to partner with. This region is vulnerable but packed with potential. My hope is that you’ll be so inspired by what you read below that you’ll share it with your church family.
About the people
In Camarines Norte (“cah-mah-REEN-es NOR-tay), over half of the population lives below the poverty line. Children are vulnerable to chronic hunger. They go to school in classrooms that are bursting at the seams, sometimes with class sizes of 60 children or more. It’s common for children to drop out of school at a young age to help provide for their families.
But there’s good news. God has not forgotten the people of Camarines Norte. He has given them tremendous potential! Community leaders are eager to learn and are open to new ideas—particularly so they can improve the lives of their children. Several local churches are actively present and serving. Your church can come alongside these local churches and leaders to change the future for the community.
Your church can impact the Philippines
As your church sponsors the community’s children, you provide a pathway for education and spiritual nurturing. Local education will grow stronger through teacher trainings, tutoring and mobile libraries. FH staff, who walk with this community year-round, see home conditions up close and advise parents on meeting their children’s physical, spiritual and emotional needs. Additionally, FH will train parents on income generating activities to be able to better provide for their children.
Read more about Camarines Norte. Picture yourself there. Imagine photographs of dozens of these children on the refrigerators of your congregation’s homes. Consider how God could use your church. And then, contact us to talk about how to start!