Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 625 – 655: The Kids of Baseco

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on Dec - 05 - 2012

During last one and a half year I have been in regular contact with Fred Bouwman, a fellow cyclist from Canada who I first met on the border between Turkey and Syria, then in India, and then in Thailand.

When I was heading for Australia (and some much needed jobs) Fred was going to the Philippines to volunteer at an orphanage for 6 months. Reading the stories from Fred made me feel like doing something similar. After working 4 months on a cattle station in Australian I found myself with a flight ticket to Manila in my hands.

When I’m travelling, both as a normal backpacker and by bike, I often use Couchsurfing. Sometimes to find a bed for the night, and sometimes to meet new people. The Couchsurfing community consists, in my opinion, of some very fine people. It was also through Couchsurfing that I learned about the CS Manila Outreach Program.

It all started with Angela. Returning to Manila after some years working in Dubai she was now running a regular outreach program to help feed the kids in the slum area of Baseco where malnutrition is a big problem.

When I went there the first time, it was very obviously that the kids didn’t have much. What struck me was that they were still able to transmit so much positive energy that it would make your day special after spending some hours with them. For me that was a very strong experience!

While it is good to be able to provide food and reach out in other ways, the most important function was to let the kids know that they are not left alone – that someone from the world outside their own actually cared about them. I hope I contributed just a little by being there.

During my final days in Manila there was heavy flooding. The kids in Baseco need help more than ever. If you would like to read more about the CS Philippine Volunteers, check out

Categories: Charity, Philippines
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