2020 was meant to be a year full of hope and accomplishments. It was a year I believed would become unforgettable… and it did, but for all the wrong reasons.
I struggled to find alternative ways to reach out to those who may need help, or even just the slightest touch of humanity in their lives, during these trying times. Many ideas popped up, but it was difficult to put the plans into action for one reason or another. I found myself back at square one but with more and more items or resources to give away.
I had originally wanted to distribute hygiene kits to children in a depressed area near my home; this was not possible. I then planned on distributing face masks to women in the area near the HAPI Headquarters; still, nothing. Then came the recommendation of Mutya Valenzuela, Operations Head of the HAPI Secretariat: Why not give them to the women of Bahay Pangarap Women’s Center?
On June 18, 2020, I handed over 20 gift packs to Filipinas del Valle, HAPI Executive Secretary. Each gift pack contained two face masks (skin care), a hygiene kit (shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, soap), and one face mask (for safety against COVID-19).
Since then, I have already prepared more hygiene kits for any potential recipients who may be a bit younger. I have also prepared sets of skin products to help the women at Bahay Pangarap Women’s Center stay in high spirits. The turnover of these, however, has yet to be scheduled.
This experience reminded me that reaching out to others need not be perfectly planned. All that matters is that we continue to spread sunshine throughout the darkest of times.