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Christmas is giving to the less fortunate here!

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Well Thanksgiving is over. Time for us to think now of the Christmas shopping. We are so lucky that we can buy even just a few presents for our kids and give some to our friends and family. Living here now for 13+ years, I’ve seen people – too many people here struggling to buy food for their Noche Buena for their family. It’s really sad but that’s the reality here.  Noche Buena – A Filipino tradition for midnight dinner for the whole family on Christmas Eve.

I think you probably read here how we started the first Martin family tradition of giving away. We were just sitting on our office in our house one Christmas eve many years ago. Bob said to me that “HonI don’t feel the Christmas spirit here because I think I don’t feel the cold weather“. We kind of just smile to each other. Then after awhile he told me what if we will buy something like burgers from McDonalds and cookies and juices and candies from the grocery stores for the homeless people here in the city. So I called up McDonalds if they can provide me with 200 burgers and I will be picking it up in a few hours. I told them of my purpose for the burgers. They were so happy and so helpful that they said yes they will get it ready for me. They told me too that they will get some of the burgers from there other branches of McDonald here in the city. They also provided me with plastic bags so that I can put some of the other goodies in it. So we headed out to town and found homeless people in the city.

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Then later we the headed towards Diversion Road and found so many beggars on the road. My goodness our burgers were gone immediately. But it was really fun giving away to them, since they’re not expecting it. We did it for a few years from our very own money. Of course it’s just limited since the funds were only ours and not so big. Until later when LiP was born. Bob started asking here from you guys our readers if you guys can pitch-in. And you guys did without questions. Now we got the LiP DRIVE. So really thankful that you guys did. We can now give out a lot and so many less fortunate people can put a smile on their faces.

I’ve encountered too many events during our giving away. A few of them really remains in my heart and it really humbles me. And it also taught more lessons to my kids. One of the events that stuck in my head was this event: A few years ago when we were giving out near BUDA (the Davao/Bukidnon border). On the way, we stop by at the road side because we saw an older lady, with her I think her daughter or a grand daughter. It’s really hard to say, she might just be looking older because of harder life. She’s getting ready to ride her horse, we stopped and and said hi to her and the little girl. We greeted her Merry Christmas and started handing her some food for the Noche Buena and some goodies for the little girl. She was shocked and didn’t know what to think, she just started crying and she said that “you guys are the angels sent from above” because she said she was praying for miracle because she didn’t know if they will have food for that night. You know what, tears were rolling my eyes and I know Bob too upon hearing her say that. Our kids saw it and I could see their sadness for the lady’s struggles but happy that at least they had food for the holidays. To be honest, It even brought tears to my eyes until now when remembering that day. Really we hear too many stories similar to that lady when we went out giving. Our kids really enjoyed doing it. They like to go to a little remote area and give there because those people never expect somebody like us to go there and just give. It’s good to give to people you don’t know and they are not expecting to get anything from anybody that day. The smiles and the sparkles of their eyes are priceless.

It’s been a good thing that we did give each year here. Our kids really know that too many poor people live here. I could tell by just watching them that they really care also for the poor people here. Our kids always look forward on every giveaway. They help out packing the stuff. It’s really a team effort by all of us. If you can help again this year, please send an email to: christmas@liveinthephilippines.com and you will get full instructions on how to donate. Thanks to all of you that contribute.

We give 100% of all your donations to the less fortunate people here. I know that all of us struggles with the hard economy right now, but if you have some extra money, that amount can really feed to one of the poor family here in the Philippines. We are so grateful for your sacrifices too. More people will contribute, more people will have food for their Noche Buena. We can put a smile to the faces of the people here, the children especially.

From the bottom of my heart “THANK YOU SO MUCH” for helping our cause. To our LIP Family, I’m forever thankful to God for you guys.

A Merry Christmas to you all!!!

Feyma

Feyma Martin is a Columnist here on the Live in the Philippines Web Magazine, she is the wife of site Publisher, Bob Martin. Feyma is originally from the Philippines, but went to the USA for 10 years after marrying Bob in 1990. Bob & Feyma moved to the Philippines to live permanently in 2000.

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Wilbert Siawingco ContiRemy MatiasMike GunkelElsie SarmientoBob Martin Recent comment authors
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Murray
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Murray

Hi Feyma
I do a similar thing with the people who live in the squatter area down the street from where I live. The smiles and the heart rendering thanks make up for the fact that in the next month I won’t have money for beer. Sorry I can’t make a donation, I am doing all I can for my poor neighbours.

Erwin Cabahug
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God Bless You ! Martin Family!!!

Bob New York
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Bob New York

In viewing the videos and pics of past LIP Christmas giving, I sometimes wonder if for the children in some of the remote and rural areas you have gone to if Bob might be the only caucasion person some of the children have ever seen. When the Santa Christmas hats were added by all of you a few years ago it gave me the thought that some of these kids will always remember for the rest of their lives of the day when they really saw Santa and his helpers bring them a gift for Christmas. Santa ? Maybe, but… Read more »

Rio Mazo Sisson
Guest

Thats is so nice of you guys, good deed indeed! Those people smiles are priceless. Thats the spirit of Christmas really.

Bob Martin
Guest

Thank you, Rio Mazo Sisson and Erwin Cabahug.

Elsie Sarmiento
Guest

Such kind souls, the Martin family.

Bob Martin
Guest

Thank you Elsie!

Mike Gunkel
Guest

We are giving this year to one of my wife’s cousins, 5 kids, no electricity, and no full time employment only seasonal sugar cane workers. But now her other cousins, aunt, uncles are upset (jealous) they don’t get the same help. They have full time jobs, one or no kids, and bigger and nicer homes with electricity. It’s sometimes frustrating living here with family so close.

Bob Martin
Guest

There is nothing shameful about helping people. It is up to us to decide who we will help and why. If others cannot accept that it is their problem, not ours. Those who are complaining have pretty much guaranteed that they will never get anything from you, Mike Gunkel.

Mike Gunkel
Guest

So true Bob. My wife can’t understand why they are not happy that we are helping there own relatives. I’ve only been here 3 years I still have so much to learn.

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