Relief Week is about helping the greatest number of people in the shortest amount of time in one annual event. Relief Week plants the seeds of hope and opportunity for families and communities. We have watched them grow throughout the year. Relief Week 2017 will have a significant impact in the years to come.
This year may have been the launch of our first official Relief Week (24 Feb – 2 Mar 2017), but this, our flagship charity drive, was born from a much longer history.
Through years of canned goods giveaways and rice drives, the idea behind Relief Week has been developing since 2011. In 2016, we began moving away from handouts and dependence toward more of a “helping hand” mentality, allowing students and families to build a future out of poverty through their own hard work and self-reliance.
By February 2017, we were ready to launch our inaugural Relief Week. Looking back over the year, the results have been positive. The intense week worked as we had hoped, with more chickens, more goats, more medical care and more kids in school throughout the year – which is why we will do it again in 2018 and hopefully every year thereafter.
One of the major takeaways from this year’s Relief Week was the introduction to a community called Wawa. Built in part on a landfill and across the street from a cemetery, Wawa is one of the poorest communities in Batangas. Residents in Wawa are forced to take extraordinary measures to survive. We began building a relationship with the residents of Wawa during Relief Week, went back to host a free medical clinic in May, and will continue to liaise with the community leaders as we begin preparations for next year’s Relief Week.
To learn more about the highlights of Relief Week 2017, click the links below: