IT WAS all for the passion to serve, that women from Pampanga’s high society took time to shy away from their usually packed social life, business trips and tours.
It was, at a time, unimaginable that women of fine pedigree and social status would take time to go to slums and poor communities to deliver basic social services.
In Pampanga, Quota International Pampanga Chapter breaks away from the stereotype and proves to all that women in high society can indeed give their share in community service and development.
“Quota International is a fellowship of women. The aim is to make accomplished women more aware of their role in community. We believe that women should be mothers and sisters to their family, community and nation,” Past President Monina “Monz” Laus, one of the first members of the chapter said.
With a motto of "we share," Quotarians are known especially for their service to deaf, hard-of-hearing, and speech-impaired individuals and disadvantaged women and children. Quota members share the values of serving and encouraging others, developing friendships, and promoting international understanding.
Quota International, founded in 1919, is an international service organization that links members of all ages, occupations, and nationalities in a worldwide network of service and friendship. The organization found its way into Pampanga in the early 90’s experiencing modest membership from local women.
Quota women in Pampanga cater to special children at the Pampanga High School, caring for their needs, helping in their education and well-being. They become their mothers sustaining their needs through funding from their own pockets. They also host medical missions and social services for indigent folks.
“Most people think that Quota women are “maarte” and it’s a club exclusive to a certain group but it’s not. The group is actually an organization, a sisterhood of women who would like to give their share in community,” Past President Tess Laus said.
Current President Vilma Caluag said the organization is breaking out of the stereotype of being an “exclusive” organization. In fact, the group is making a throng of membership recruitment from different sectors of the community. Currently, they have plain housewives, business entrepreneurs and career women members.
“The goal is to get women who are willing to work for a common goal. The group is branching and expanding,” Caluag said.
Like any other organization, Quota has its usual trials and hardships both within the group and the organization in general. Quota officer Jennifer Bonifacio narrates that most of their problems, however, are “women” related problems.
“Since we are an all women group, it has not been difficult for us to resolve to problems,” Bonofacio said.
True enough, Quota Pampanga, with members from Pampanga's upper society of accomplished women, has been in the forefront of much provincial social work. Chief of which is the Operation Smile, which provided free surgery to children with facial deformities in San Fernando and Angeles City.
Quota Pampanga believes that women should first start helping themselves and share this help with others.
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