Year 2020 has been a very challenging year for a lot of Filipinos. From the eruption of the Taal Volcano, to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and just recently, the consecutive typhoons that hit the country, children and families have struggled to get back on their feet. Now that Christmas is fast approaching, most are still unsure how they will celebrate this holiday season.
World Vision, an international Christian non-profit organization, is committed to making this a Christmas like no other most especially for the most vulnerable children and their families in the face of these difficult times.
Through their annual tradition of sharing Noche Buena meals to communities under their care, World Vision aims to spread hope and joy, making it possible for children and families to celebrate Christmas, such as eight-year-old Carla and her family.
Carla shared with us that she looks forward to eating her favorite spaghetti and celebrating this season with her family. She lives in one of World Vision’s assisted communities in Batangas that was hardest hit by the eruption of Taal Volcano.
“Bilang isang nanay, sadyang mahirap ang pinagdaanan namin sa pagputok ng bulkan. Tsaka ho, hindi ko alam anong gagawin ko. Ang inisip ko agad, ang mga anak ko maligtas (As a mother, it was hard when the volcano erupted. I didn’t know what to do. My thoughts focused on ensuring my children’s safety),” shared Carla’s mother, Maricel.
Carla’s father, Henry, earned a living through fishing. They used to celebrate Christmas with a small feast and a happy home. But due to the tragedies they experienced, there was a time when they felt they’ve already lost everything. What kept them going was the hope the Christmas celebration brings.
“Ang kahilingan ko ngayong darating na Pasko, sana po kami ay magsama-sama’ng buong pamilya (My wish this Christmas is for our whole family to celebrate together),” wished Henry.
Since they first launched it, World Vision's Noche Buena campaign has distributed more than 400,000 Noche Buena packs to Filipino families all over the country. World Vision aims to reach more than 24,000 families this year.
“The celebration of Christmas will always be meaningful because it is about the birth of Jesus that brought hope for all humanity. With everything that happened this year, I personally invite you to join us in spreading good tidings especially to the most vulnerable children and their communities. As you give the gift of Noche Buena, may you and your families feel the peace, joy and hope this Christmas season brings,” said Mr. Rommel Fuerte, World Vision’s National Director.