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Volunteers bring the Bamboo Coin Bank to Manila Chinatown stores

June 07, 2018 | Jamaica Digo

Inspired by the idea of helping the needy by donating a peso or five every day, store owners in Manila Chinatown adopted Tzu Chi coin banks. 【Photo by Jamaica Digo】

Story Highlights

  • Volunteers went around Manila Chinatown on June 7 to introduce the Tzu Chi coin banks to store owners. The activity inspired 163 entrepreneurs to display the coin banks in their stores, encouraging their customers and staff to make donations for the needy every day.


“You can help others by saving a peso or five in this,” Tzu Chi volunteer Xu Bi Yuan told a store owner, showing the latter a green coin bank. She went on to explain that the practice of daily giving, no matter how small, creates a blessing not only for the needy but for the donor as well. Most importantly, when more people are creating blessings, it can become a force powerful enough to mitigate disasters.

This was how Tzu Chi volunteers encouraged 163 store owners in Manila Chinatown, Binondo on June 7 to join in the stream of goodness. On the said date, 23 volunteers went around the area on foot to introduce the concept of the Bamboo Coin Bank.

“There are many Chinese businessmen here. We went to them first because they are aware of what Tzu Chi is doing here in the Philippines. What we hope to achieve is for both the Chinese and Filipinos to donate so that they can contribute in helping our needy brothers and sisters,” explained volunteer Christy Ty, one of the organizers of the activity.

Manila Chinatown is surrounded by many slum communities. Its streets have been home to many families in destitute for years. It was also for this reason that Tzu Chi volunteers deemed it is important to sow goodness in the area: so that these businesses and their customers will be empowered to help the needy within their vicinity.

As soon as they received the coin banks, entrepreneurs put them on display. Tzu Chi volunteers reminded them that they will come every end of the month to collect the contents of the coin banks.

“This way, I will be able to introduce Tzu Chi’s works to my customers and how they can help others in need,” shared Venus Co.

Maxima Tiu added that it won’t be too hard to convince people to support the Buddhist group’s charity programs. “A lot of Filipinos are already aware of Tzu Chi Foundation’s works in the country,” she emphasized.

While many had readily agreed to adopt coin banks, there were some whose response had not been as positive.

 Regardless, the volunteers went with their mission resolutely, even gratefully.

“Some didn’t want to welcome our coin banks in their stores. We can’t do anything about it, so we just thanked them. At the very least we were able to tell them about what we are doing and we are able to share with them the idea of helping others,” said volunteer Xu.

  • Fruit vendors in Manila Chinatown also committed to donate daily for the needy as well as encourage their customers to give their loose change for charity. 【Photo by Tzu Chi Volunteer】

  • Volunteer Xu Bi Yuan thanks entrepreneur Venus Co for adopting a Tzu Chi coin bank. Co says she will also share with her customers Tzu Chi’s charity programs. 【Photo by Jamaica Digo】