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!
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.
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.
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?!
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.
Here are the activities that day:
Create your own 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.
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.
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
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.
Welcoming the 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!
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!
As Coe said, we were literally “mobbed” during this game. Hahaha!
Food Distribution by 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.
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.
GAME 3 – Human Bingo
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.
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
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!
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
- 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.
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.
“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.