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Monday, October 25, 2021

Hope, inspiration come alive at Suntown

AS A writer and journalist, I am often driven to use my space to inform my readers that while many of us are enjoying life, there are people— even young kids—who are trying to survive many degenerative diseases or illnesses.

To me, becoming a “bridge” to those who have “more than enough” to that in scarcity or in pain, keep me continue my job in the media.

That is why, for the past six years, I devoted much of my time in finding inspiration from featuring the struggles and hope of our less fortunate fellows in Negros. The thrust is, you share their lives in various media platforms and solicit awareness, prayers and eventually, tangible actions from well-meaning people.

Aside from it feels good to help, I think it is our obligation to help one another. I take comfort in the idea that when you share yourself to others, people will do the same when you become fragile.

A recent trip at the CICM in Talisay City granted me another opportunity to look into the situation of young kids with cancer and other terminal illnesses. It is very moving and touching to see young kids smile despite the physical pain they are feeling.

Surrounded by a group of children diagnosed with similar sickness, they find support from each other. The organization, Suntown Camp, is a foundation that works to raise funds for various programs to provide group support, assistance and inspiration to their beneficiaries.  

One of the thrusts of the foundation is to establish a firm support group for the children, their parents and siblings through regular assemblies.

“The gains of the camp can only be fully enjoyed if the children’s home environment becomes a productive setting for them. Thus we conduct support group sessions for the kids’ siblings and parents on different occasions, so that the whole family can provide the children with an ideal home setting within their shattered lives. The children are likewise provided with support group sessions among themselves,” an article from the foundation revealed.

Together with friends and some Bacolod-based volunteers, we were able to deliver some boxes of pasalubong, a simple lunch and some shirts bearing the line “I Cancervive.” The august halls of CICM were filled with colorful papers, happy looking pictures and art projects as outputs of the children. It was such an emotional walk to see the walls decorated with inspiring quotes and images created by children themselves.  
 
The foundation, headed by its president Millie Kilayko, is “working towards building an endowment fund for Suntown Camp so that the foundation can be assured of continued funds for its worthwhile programs, without its members bearing the burden of fund solicitation for every activity throughout the year. It is our dream that someday, it can sustain its activities, as well as increase its capability to serve more beneficiaries, on earnings from its endowment fund.”
 
The foundation is constantly appealing for sponsors and volunteers to sustain its worthwhile programs. Let us join Suntown Camp and make the lives of our sick kids brighter. Apart from financial support, we share our time and inspire them to continue with life and yes, be really strong during the hard times.*
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