But Kiwi never gave up hope. She is a strong woman with strong faith. Kiwi grew up in the Philippines, which raises a lot of strong people. Because natural disasters are so frequent and destructive, citizens are conditioned to be overcomers. In general, Filipino people are have earned global admiration for their perseverance and good humor.
- The Philippines is an archipelago of more than 7,107 islands with a population of over 100 million people.
- One of the most unique and traditional dishes is balut, which is a boiled, fertilized duck egg with a half-formed chick inside.
- When the Spanish government ruled the Philippines, it ruled that all citizens must have Spanish last names.
- Jeepneys are the most popular way of getting around in the Philippines. They are colourful and crowded. One of the apparent origins of the word jeepney, is from the words jeep and knee because passengers sit so closely together (if you even manage to get a seat!).
- The Philippines is regarded the “text capital of the world”. 350 to 400 million text messages are sent daily by local 35 million cell phone users, which is more than the daily total sent in the U.S. and Europe, combined.
- The Philippine flag is unique because it’s displayed differently in times of peace and war. During peace, the blue side is hung on top, and when the country is at war, the flag is hung the other way so that the red is on top.
Joy can’t easily be stolen, but the often harsh conditions of life in the Philippines affect a child’s ability to dream. Human trafficking is especially rampant in this country and many children are forced into labor to help provide for their families. Here are a few of the latest stats on poverty in the Philippines:
- Super Typhoon Haiyan and fast-rising food prices caused an increase in poverty in the first half of 2014.
- The poverty incidence is slowly dropping due to increased government initiatives, but 25.8% of Filipinos still live below the poverty line.
- At last count, around 3.6 million Filipino children under age 5 are underweight and 4 million are stunted due to lack of nutrition.
- According to UNICEF, 30,000–50,000 children in the Philippines are displaced every year as a result of armed conflict.
You can be part of releasing Filipino children from poverty in Jesus’ name, and become part of their world! Click here for more information about sponsorship.