The opening of the new school year in the Philippines has been delayed because of the
coronavirus pandemic. Most Filipino children have been staying home, on an extended
vacation, for almost half a year now. What have they learned? Their ABCs perhaps?
We can be sure that they’ve acquired new vocabulary like “quarantine”, “pandemic”,
surgical mask”, “relief goods”, or maybe “COVID – 19”.
Well, here are some big words, say it with me: SPECS Foundation – Puso Kitchen! This
initiative is now almost on its 4 th month since the first community kitchen last April 2,
2020. We have served thousands of vegetable meals to the elderly, children, and
families in need. These vegetables were bought from farmers in Benguet who met
challenges in selling & transporting their produce because of the lockdown. In SPECS
Foundation Inc., an avalanche of gratitude is welled up in our hearts knowing that we
can bring blessings to people near and far.
The kids talk to us when they receive their veggie meals. They’re a lot happier
nowadays compared to how they were at the start of the lockdown. You sense their
trust, their hope, and their glee. It’s funny how we feel like crying when we see them
laughing as they see what we’ve brought them. Do our humble meals also bring joy?
Remembering a Spanish proverb: “Full stomach, happy heart”. Maybe that’s it.
This joyful ripple effect created a different set of vocabulary words. Gratitude. Donors.
Compassion. Partners. Sponsors. Love. Very common, everyday words. But to the kids
of SPECS Foundation – Puso Kitchen, they define them as dignity and hope.