What an incredible year 2015 was at Gentle Hands. Every year we are required to submit to DSWD our years prior accomplishments. It’s amazing to reflect and see what a remarkable year we have had and how God has truly been present through it all.
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This afternoon, I sat in the crowd and watched five of my children proudly walk across the stage to accept their diploma commemorating their graduation from Grade 6.
By the Grace of God, these 5 did it and the announcer’s voice roared their names across the speaker. I was taken aback by how straight and tall he stood before the long line of hands to shake. Department Heads, teachers, and a famous politician who he did not know, shook his hand and patted his shoulder saying, ‘Good Job, Boy’.
And I think if I could have one minute of that man’s time, I would have something to say.
Yes, sir, they have done a good job. And yes, they have graduated. But…
And sir? What you do not know is that until just two weeks ago, that shy, young woman shaking your hand, was hopeless. No uniform, no lunch money, no school supplies, yet for the last year she has attended school. Four years older than all her classmates, she was determined to finish, knowing that in this culture, education is her only hope. She was alone.
And what you do not know, only two weeks ago, did my own girl bring that frightened young girl home to me. Mom, we need to help her, she pleaded. She is all along. My girl; her own little life fragmented by abuse, but her spirit resilient and strong, healed.
Maybe when you carry such wounds, you see them more easily in others.
The young girl’s story was familiar. Abandoned by a cruel mother and left to her father who beat her and did things that fathers should never do to their daughters. Sometimes she would sleep in the park, not even a peso in her pocket. Sometimes, she was okay. Sometimes she just wandered the streets, avoiding going home.
When we came tonight, we walked to the gate of the school, and her eyes filled with tears. I cannot imagine her feelings as she saw all her classmates with their parents, standing proud, in the line up.
But sir, that you do not know.
How these five came into our care is undoubtedly the Hand of God.
How they have grieved, healed, and grown is nothing less than a miracle from above.
And the resilience, beauty and hope that is real and alive in their lives, is only the work of the spirit of a Living God.
And the plans, the awesome plans of a Great God, are for them to prosper, to not be harmed, and for them to have a hope and a future.
And that, sir, you should know.
To the mother who many years ago, brought her dying little boy to my front door and begged me to keep him… to save his life… thank you for trusting me.
To the mother who handed me her son with tears streaming down her face. Almost too exhausted to speak… thank you for trying. I understand. Read more
In the wake of the devastating typhoon that ripped through the Visayas region of the Philippines on November 8, 2013, Gentle Hands raised $25,000 to help where we could.
This little boy was referred to us from another foundation just a few months ago. Born with visual and hearing impairments, he was surrendered for adoption but complications and slow development made the “powers that be” decide he was not adoptable.
Shane Hanson, Founder and Coordinator of PAI (Progression Athletics International) brought his skill and passion for kids and youth to Gentle Hands and Malabon.
We went to pick up an abandoned child that was referred to us from a government facility. My social worker and I were prepared for the worst. Desperately underfunded and overcrowded, whenever we were asked to take a small one from this center, we were prepared to do so without hesitation. They were not set up to care for infants. Teens and older kids who were in trouble with the law, were made to care for the little ones. That was their punishment. Oh, the abuses I have stumbled upon because of this system of so-called discipline.
Team Koza rocks again!
Who would think to spend Christmas in an orphanage would be so much fun!