History of Humanility and Why we are Building a Foundation of Hope in Bogo, Philippines

Living in the Philippines for many years, we always saw street children blending in as part of the scenery. One day, while eating lunch in Manila, a little barefoot boy approached asking for food, and hearing his story woke us up to see these children as part of our responsibility. Once our eyes were opened, we began seeing abandoned and abused children in our community of humanity in many places, sleeping on cold hard streets, searching through garbage for something to eat, looking for shelter from the rain, and worst of all, many were being trafficked or “managed” by city syndicates. The week we found out that a 2 month-old baby that we had been helping, with her mother, had been sold for $140, we gathered friends together to rent a house in Manila, and filled it with street children. We hired a local team to care for them, secured birth certificates and enrolled them in school, took on the responsibility for their food, health, clothing, emotional healing, and daily doses of love and attention, and also had to secure approval from government agencies.

A year later, just after Typhoon Haiyan, while bringing food and relief to victims in Northern Cebu, we came across many abandoned children living in the streets. After hearing their stories of horrible abuse, we knew that we must do something to emancipate them from their survival on the streets, educate them, and empower them to discover and develop their full life potential. Volunteers joined us, we rented a house in Bogo, and began caring for 25 children. At this time, we decided to establish “Humanility” as a nonprofit organization registered both in the USA and in the Philippines. As founders, Bryan and Diane Thomas, along with our Board and International Representatives, decided that all of us would serve without financial remuneration, and that we would work to connect sponsors with the street children that we were rescuing. The sponsorship fund now takes care of the needs of the children, pays for the services of our dedicated Filipino staff, and covers the rent of the homes. The more children we emancipate, educate, and empower, the more sponsors are needed.

Time has revealed to us that renting homes is not a sustainable option because most landlords do not like 25 former street children living in their buildings. In Bogo, Cebu, after having to move several times, we realized that for the stability of the children and for long-term sustainability, we would have to purchase land and build our own facilities that the children could call “Home” and never have to worry about being pushed out. Our Humanility Bogo director, Collyn Laurio found a hectare (2.47 acres) of ideally located land, and the children began visiting the land and praying for a miracle. The cost of the land and development of it, along with buildings needed is estimated to be $325,000. Our first miracle happened last month when Bent Tree Church decided to donate $125,000, which is enabling us to purchase the land and put a fence around it. During the next 64 days, from November 29, Giving Tuesday – until January 31, we will be Crowd-Funding to raise at least $200,000 more, which will be used to:

- Build a Boy’s Home on our property

- Build a Girl’s Home on our property

- Build the “Family Center” where the children can eat, study, and be family together

- Build an Activity Center for Fitness, Library, Counseling, Games, Arts & Crafts

- Develop an Organic Garden

- Develop Sports Facilities: Basketball Court, Volley Ball Court, Baseball Field

- Film Team to make a Documentary Film of the Bogo Home and the Children’s Stories

Participants

Meet some of the fundraisers that are part of this campaign

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