Going beyond the written stories in Alabel



“Write stories that seek to inspire people to take action.”

This has been my mantra as a citizen journalist. Since the enhanced community quarantine started, I spent my time on social media looking for news. I pitched inspiring stories of the locals doing their own way to help the community. While I was keeping myself busy writing news, I was reminded by my own mantra. 

Volunteers from Zero Hunger Alabel reach out to residents of far-flung communities in the municipality of Alabel with food packs containing rice, canned goods, eggs, vegetables, and Vitamin C.

I then realized that I can actually do more, and that my “ambag” is not only limited in amplifying my community’s voice. I know I can be one of those “locals doing their own way to help.” So, I set up Zero Hunger Alabel, a fundraising movement that aims to provide food packs to the poorest of the poor families in our municipality.

Since it’s my first time to lead a fundraising campaign I was quite anxious. 

“May maniniwala kaya sa amin?” This was my first question. But thanks be to God! The youths believed in us – they were the first to respond to our call. Their “Ate, naa koy 20” gives us hope. My team was even more hopeful and grateful when our teachers and friends from other towns also donated.

Suddenly, the first wave came. I thought I’ve already seen enough of how Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) has affected the lives of the marginalized ones, not until we talked to some beneficiaries; not until we hear them say “Salamat, gihulat gyud namo ni”; not until they thanked us because of the “big help” that we handed to them: a 5-kilo rice that will help them to survive in the upcoming days.

Their words melted our hearts. Their words opened our eyes. Their plight became our plight. Their words urged us to continue even more. Their words left us with a learning that our being privileged should not blind us to what really is happening on the ground, in the grassroots level.

By that, to empathize is good, but to take action is better. Moreover, no one is too poor to help. And no one is too young to lead.

Padayon lang tang tanan! (By Rhoda May Ebad for Kapit Mindanao)

The #SKLSeries (Share Ko Lang) aims to share stories of hope and inspiration written by the youth beneficiaries of Kapit-Mindanao themselves.

We’re raising P1 million for 20 communications all over Mindanao. Help us reach that goal! To donate, go to bit.ly/KapitDonate now!

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