Indigenous communities are already experiencing hunger and poor access to healthcare and other essential services even before the COVID-19 outbreak happened.
In fact, the United Nations reports that indigenous people are nearly 3 times as likely to be living in extreme poverty as their non-indigenous counterparts.
The current pandemic made their condition much, much worse.
The Dumagat Remontado tribe residing in Brgy. Lumutan, General Nakar, Quezon, was among those greatly affected. The virus poses graver health threat to their families while lockdowns in some parts of the country also prevent them from continuing with their livelihoods.
To help alleviate their suffering, CBN Asia’s humanitarian arm, Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines partnered with the Philippine Army, IBC Diliman Outreach, and DLL/SAGAD Off-Roaders Group and braved the narrow and slippery roads of Quezon just to reach the far-flung area.
Over 200 families received much-needed food bags and hygiene kits – which include sanitation supplies such as tissue paper, sanitary napkins, and diapers for babies.
Operation Blessing also gave solar panels to Brgy. Lumutan to aid their need for electricity.
“This food bag is a big blessing to us,” says 24-year-old Marife Mendoza. Marife and her family would steam bananas and sweet potatoes just to put food on their table.
She added, “Because of our poor condition, most of us are illiterate. In my case, I was not even able to finish Grade 1. I have 3 kids now and we basically just depend on the crops we plant for food. My husband, who is a barangay officer, sometimes earns extra money as a hauler but it is still not enough for our daily needs.”
You too, can take part in blessing our indigenous kababayans in need and spark hope to pandemic-hit communities – right in your own home!
Visit the Operation Blessing website and know how you can donate online, through banks, and via Gcash. For more details on how to donate and sponsor, you may contact 09399215543 or 09189067753.