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A Walk to Remember

In travelling, one of the most important gear that we should have is the shoes, sandals or even slippers, right?  It protects our feet from the sharp objects that can be found anywhere.  So, as a traveller and backpacker, I invested a lot for my travelling shoes - I didn't even care about the price involve, just to make sure that I am fully protected.  In line with this needs, we created a project that focuses on foot protection, not for us, but for the children of Sibuyan Island, Romblon.

A Walk to Remember is actually my favorite movie ever.  This movie made cry every time I watched it.  But now, this title was made as the theme for our climb in Mt. Guiting-guiting in Sibuyan Island, Romblon.  This mountain is said to be one of the most difficult mountain in the country, but it didn't stopped us in helping the residents found in nearby areas.

This project was created by by some mountaineers, headed by Jef, Jay Z, Carla, Drew, Jaeson, Frank from Switzerland and myself in cooperation with the people of Brgy. Tampayan, Magdiwang, Romblon.  This event focused on the distribution of slippers and a feeding program.  The slippers were being collected from different individuals who have a golden heart.  It wasn't a simple task to be involve in this kind of event, because everything is needed accordingly. 

Transporting boxes of slippers while our fully loaded backpacks were on our back added a challenge but nobody said "I am tired."  The weights that we were bringing that time means a lot for the poor children of Sibuyan.  So, every one of us were all inspired to see the children on how they will smile after receiving our gifts. 

For the feeding program, we prepared pancit, sandwich and ice tea.  Chopping, cutting, cooking and preparing were done after 1200 hrs.  The program will be starting at around 1500 hrs so we made our best and exerted our full efforts to meet that time frame.  Good thing that we made it on time, thanks to sir Toto and family.

While the others were still doing the final touch in food preparation, some of us brought the boxes to the elementary school just few meters from the house.  Less than 200 pairs of colorful slippers of different sizes were being put on the ground while the head teacher was doing a roll call and was trying to create a line for the children - this is to make the program organized.

I admit that I came from a family which is almost within the poverty line, but I am so thankful that I still have everything.  So, every time that smiles were formed on the faces of the children after receiving his/her slipper, it was an unforgettable scene.  They were bare footed and it seemed that they were all prepared for the chance to select the new ones.  What I've noticed during this event was, some children still used the old ones, when I asked why, the little girl answered: "I will be using it for the start of the school year" of course it was in Filipino.  But I was happy to hear that at least that little girl still have dreams, and they can get that through education.  She is still willing to sacrifice so that by June, she still have her new slipper - I got her point!

The distribution of slippers  was followed by the feeding program and we were all hungry that time, I think we burnt more than 2000 calories just for the first half.  Our faces were covered with sweat and dust, our shirts were almost wet that time.

It was really a great experience being in this activity.  I enjoyed a lot and I will cherish every photos that I captured.  The memories, every smile and laughter were the only payment that we received for this event. This program will not be the end, it will be just an inspiration to others and I am just hoping that the other mountaineers will do the same.  "Leave Nothing, But Smile and Happiness"

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