Of the many results of gratitude, the most beautiful is when the beneficiaries start paying it forward.
Recipients of Tzu Chi’s housing villages in Kananga proved this when they went to Ormoc to help in cleaning up the Tzu Chi Great Love City located in Barangay Liloan.
The Great Love City suffered from flooding when Tropical Storm Urduja (Kai-Tak) brought torrential rains in the Eastern Visayas region. On its wake, the villagers were left with thick mud and heaps of debris to clean up.
After hearing about the plight of their fellow Tzu Chi beneficiaries, 33 residents of the Great Love Village in Barangay Hiloctogan and 49 residents of the Great Love Village in Barangay Rizal, both in the municipality of Kananga, volunteered to help in the cleaning operations. They arrived in batches, aboard a mini bus, a van, and a truck in the morning of December 29, carrying their own shovels. Immediately, they got to work.
The residents of the Great Love City are close to the hearts of Tzu Chi’s Kananga housing beneficiaries.
When a 6.5-magnitude earthquake hit central Leyte on July 6, 2017, Tzu Chi Foundation donated 70 units of prefabricated shelters to the displaced families in Barangay Rizal and 50 units to those in Barangay Hiloctogan. Ormoc Great Love City villagers, who are also volunteers of Tzu Chi, installed the houses.
“I want to thank Tzu Chi. My family is no longer living in a house located in a precarious area. I heard that the Great Love City was going to be cleaned so I came here,” says Barangay Hiloctogan resident Vicente Celedonio, 54.
“With more people working together we can do better. We can clean up the place faster,” he adds.
Celedonio and his neighbors earn their keep from farming. After Tropical Storm Urduja struck, the houses they received from Tzu Chi remained up and sturdy. However, their livelihood was badly affected as their crops were devastated by the storm. Despite this, they were more than happy to extend a helping hand.
Young villagers from Kananga also seized the holiday break from school to come with their neighbors to help in the cleanup.
“I am glad because I came to help the people here,” says Jaymark Morallos, 11.
“I am very happy because we have been helped before. Now, I just want to help them,” adds 10-year-old Danjilo Gorgonio.
They may be struggling from the calamities that strike them one after another, but the people of Leyte have golden hearts that see past their own sufferings. With this, they make it possible to keep the cycle of love and kindness continue on for generations to come.
Recipients of Tzu Chi’s housing project in Barangay Rizal, Kananga arrive in Ormoc aboard a mini bus.【Photo by Jamaica Digo】
Tzu Chi Philippines Deputy CEO welcomes the Great Love Village residents from Barangay Hiloctogan in Kananga. Said residents are volunteering to help in the cleanup of the Ormoc Great Love City.【Photo by Jamaica Digo】
Residents of Tzu Chi’s Great Love Village in Barangay Hiloctogan volunteer to assist in the cleanup drive at the Tzu Chi Ormoc Great Love City.【Photo by Jamaica Digo】
Great Love Village residents from Barangay Hiloctogan in Kananga volunteer to help in the cleanup drive.【Photo by Jamaica Digo】
Vicente Celedonio, 54, pities the Great Love City residents for the calamity that struck them so he comes to help clean their village. It is also his way of showing his gratitude for the help they received from Tzu Chi and from the villagers of Great Love City, who installed the prefabricated shelters that they are living in right now.【Photo by Jamaica Digo】
Jaymark Morallas, 11, pitches in help during the cleanup. Although still young, he knows that helping others in need is important. 【Photo by Jamaica Digo】
Residents of the Tzu Chi Great Love Village in Barangay Rizal, Kananga join the cleanup drive at the Great Love City in Ormoc as volunteers. The delegation is composed of 49 individuals.【Photo by Jamaica Digo】