Life is Awesome

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon   Upon waking up in the morning before starting your day, expect life as awesome–see it, imagine it, feel it. Set aside worries and take a More »

Family is Everything

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   Our greatest inspiration in life is our family—parents, siblings, wife, husband, niece and nephews even our grandparents. Not only the biological family but also true More »

Flower Pattern and Mandala in Sweet Potato

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   Few days ago I crave to eat sweet potatoes cooked in coconut milk with sugar and jackfruit meat. While chopping the sweet potatoes (Camote in More »

Understanding People

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   When looking at people is like trying to look at a pair of slipper with hundred varieties of style and of color. All look similar More »

Forgive Others for not Being Kind

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon    To understand people of how they act and misbehave is the kindest thing we do to ourselves. I repeat, it is the kindest and most beautiful More »

Continue that Dream! Happy 2017!

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon     Life without a dream is nothing! It is the fire that keep us going. It gives life to the soul. It is the breath of More »

Small Note

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon   While going to the vet clinic to pick-up my rescued cat after his neuter, a man approached us with his small note written “Apology for More »

Smile Don’t Cost a Thing

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon “Good morning ma’am,” the lady security guard says to the staffs of women who pass by at the x-ray security machine at the entrance of a More »

“Seeking for an Answer”-Personal Experiences about Religion

Written and Posted by: Margie Babon   It is not a surprise to me if some people hate me for what I am writing about religion and cannot accept some ideas that More »

Usual Unusual

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon   It was 12th of February, Friday after office during rushed hour where traffic is so heavy and commuting is such a burden.  It is so More »

Category Archives: Community & Event

Please People, Have Empathy

Written and Posted By: Margie Babon



Meet “Kitty”, our new rescued kitten that my niece has also have seen before they went to school this morning and felt empathy when they saw her. I also saw her this afternoon (before going to work)she was thrown at the canal by a kid. I saw her running away and helped herself to get out of the dirty water. I really feel sorry for her. Then when I get home, I saw her again sitting beside the canal, in a very poor condition, her eyes were closed full of dirt, she suffered too much from torture of human hands.

After cleaning her with warm water, her eyes begin to open and she feels a little okay though sneezing.

Please people, I know a lot of you hate local stray cats or dogs. When you see them along the street walking, sitting, or pooping, peeing, or digging the garbage, please,  IF YOU DON’T HAVE FOOD TO FEED THEM, PLEASE LEAVE THEM ALONE AND NEVER HURT THEM.  Do not kick them, spit on them, or even stone them. These animals has life, they too can get hurt, they too feel the pain when tortured slowly.

Animals like dogs and cats can suffer emotionally, they have sharp memories mostly when they get hurt. Like humans, they too get traumatized and it won’t be easily erased unless someone shows a lot of care.

We live in this world not only for our own reason of existence–to eat, to have shelter, to have education, to enjoy life, BUT we also created to co-exist with other creations and that includes animals. We were created to respect animals and give them unconditional love thru understanding and acceptance.

Society… people, please have empathy with the animals.



“Do You Really Know What You Eat” -International Poster Competition 2015


Segunda Llamada 2015

  • Processed foods: Do you really know what you eat?

It´s been a long and arduous business day. You are stuck in traffic on the way home. Your stomach claims for food, then you remember that there´s “nothing”, —once again— for dinner at home. You go to the nearest store to buy something fast that calms your appetite; preferably not too expensive. You’re one of those people who take care of themselves, so you choose a packaged fruit juice, a light sandwich, and a cereal bar from a new “nutritious” line you just saw advertised on television a few days ago. An hour later, satisfied after eating, you find an article about nutritional information.

To be honest, you’ve never worried about those sort of things, because you know you do your best to eat healthy, but you barely have enough time for work. However, this time, curiosity awakens your interest and you have a look at the labels of the recently eaten packaged products which remain at your table. You had never wondered what they actually contained. The only really important thing was to grab them from the shelf, satisfy hunger and discard the packaging; but now that you spend some time thinking about it you land on account of some disturbing data.

The juice that you like so much is actually sugar and fruit that comes from a mysterious concentrate. The bread from the “light” sandwich contains high fructose corn syrup, which should not be that bad, but a quick web search tells you that it is a synthetic sugar substitute, which consumed in excess is related to obesity. Finally, the cereal bar contains so many colorants, chemicals and ingredients you can´t even pronounce, that makes you doubt if it is as nutritious as stated by the model in the advertisement and you end asking yourself if you really know what you eat.


  • Brief

In collaboration with Greenpeace Mexico and Food Myth Busters.

The fast pace of modern life in cities and the bombing of misleading advertisement full of omissions, has made us believe that fast and processed food gives us comfort and practicality, even when it endangers our health and is based on a harmful model that only benefits big companies. Transnational corporations control the industrial agriculture model; spend billions of dollars to exert political pressure and convince us we need all the processed products and foods in our diet and lifestyle.

This same model encourages a system of agrochemicals, pesticides, fertilizers and genetically modified seeds promoted by themselves; justified under a false ideal of feeding the world and its growing population; but omitting they pollute water with toxics, sharpen social inequality in the fields, and limit access to healthy and sustainable consumer choices. Small farmers —who produce 70% of food worldwide—have less support from public policies and more pressure from corporations. Their options are limited to quit farming altogether or join the industrial model, adopting harmful practices such as the use of chemical inputs; making industrial agriculture a vicious circle of high economic, social and environmental cost.

Organic farming shows that it is possible to enjoy healthy eating, and we all have the power to make this a reality. This model protects the soil, water and climate, promoting biodiversity. In turn, it doesn’t pollute the environment with agrochemicals and transgenic crops; and allows a world where producers and consumers, and not corporations, control the food chain.

Whenever you choose natural and fair trade foods you make a choice that benefits your health and that of your family, that empowers those most in need and promotes food sovereignty —our right to decide what to eat and determine who produces it and how. You are what you eat: because of that prefer natural and sustainable source foods over highly processed and packaged ones.



  • A natural and sustainable diet will provide sufficient nutrients to feel better and live a healthy life.
  • The vast majority of processed foods are composed of chemicals, preservatives, substitutes, additives, artificial colors; as well as high amounts of salt, sugar, fat and sodium, which consumed in excess, are associated with diseases such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, renal insufficiency, among others.
  • Supports and empowers small producers and local farmers; promoting sustainable agriculture and fair trade over the agro industrial model.
  • By promoting organic farming you protect the environment,because it doesn’t use agrochemicals and GMOs,protecting soil from erosion, pollution and acidification.
  • Organic farming allows a world where producers and consumers, not corporations, control the food chain.Reduces the environmental impact caused by waste derived from packaging; as well as the resources used during manufacture.
  • Contrary to the general perception; a diet based on natural foods prepared at home is cheaper than processed products and eating out.
  • It´s necessary to reverse the distorted vision of nutrition generated by advertising.
  • To the extent that we as consumers demand healthier products, companies will be forced to broaden their offer,giving higher quality foods.
  • To guide future generations towards healthier habits and a just food model.


SUBMISSION DETAILS (For more details download PDF by clicking the poster below)


Participation is open to professionals and students within the areas of design, visual communication and related careers. No Entry Fee. 

Participants can upload a maximum of 3 proposals (single or conforming series).

Proposals must be uploaded trough the following link:



From Monday May25th, until Monday July 6th at 23:59 of Mexico city time CDT (GMT – 6hrs)



To participate in the competition, entries sent must include the following:


Size: 60x90cm (3545 x 5313px – 150 ppi)

Vertical format only. Black ink or grayscale,

JPG, Grayscale mode, (NO RGB / CMYK) maximum 5MB.



600x900px – 72ppi JPG, Grayscale (NO RGB / CMYK)



300 characters maximum.Without name or alias.



Full name, age, address, zip code, country, telephone number, e-mail address and a proposal of a sustainable action related to food habits which the participant commits to undertake in his/her daily life. If an entry does not consist of all four parts, it will not be considered for the competition.



Bags to School 2015

Posted For: JCI Fort Bonifacio




Bags for the future is more than just a project of giving away school supplies to underprivileged kids in communities, we want to inspire the kids to go to school. We want to create a culture of fun in learning. We want to ignite that spark that will motivate the children to pursue their studies and build a good life for their future families.

This 2015, together with volunteers, friends, partners and supporters, we will provide a fun learning day for the kids of Mini Park Village at Barangay Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City (June 28) as well as underprivileged kids from Maharlika Village, Taguig City (July 4) and to our partners’ communities at Zamboanga Sibugay at Mindanao (July).

With our joint efforts, we will provide these communities with fun learning activities, the children’s needed tools for schooling like bags, pencils, paper, notebooks, crayons and more! We will bring-in instructional materials like books, charts, chalk, maps and more! We will have story-telling activities, fun and games, learning workshops, and lots of fun!

Contact us at to volunteer, donate or sponsor. The blessings you share will come a long way in helping us to see education as key to uplift the lives of people in our communities.


poster-bag to school


“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”-Nelson Mandela


About JCI Fort Bonifacio

JCI Fort Bonifacio

To know more and connect with the upcoming charity projects and meaningful activities of JCI Fort Bonifacio Taguig City, visit the facebook account:

Junior Chamber International Fort Bonifacio Taguig City

Or visit the official website at

Words and Images courtesy of JCI


Biomimicry Global Design Challenge

Posted By: Margie Babon

Words and images: Biomimicry Global Design Challenge c/o Erin Connelly


TBI_Food_Challenge_PPT_FINAL-v2 (4) copy

By 2050, our planet will be home to nine billion people.

In order to feed the world, we need to design a better food system – one that reflects that a healthy planet and a sustainable food chain are one and the same. We believe that biomimicry—an approach to innovation that taps into nature-inspired solutions—can be a catalyst for groundbreaking solutions to big problems in our food system.

In order to spark truly disruptive food system innovations, the Biomimicry Institute, in partnership with the Ray C. Anderson Foundation, is launching a worldwide biomimicry design competition in January 2015. The goal of this competition is to engage and mobilize thousands of students and professionals to tackle food system challenges using biomimicry design solutions.

Whether addressing waste, growing methods, pest management, packaging, preservation and distribution, soil quality—or the changing climate—nature offers strategies for solving issues around food and agriculture in innovative ways.


TBI_Food_Challenge_PPT_FINAL-v2 (5)


Designers, scientists, engineers, students, and more are invited to use biomimicry as a tool to develop new approaches to improving our food system.

Participants get access to our collection of biomimicry resources, the chance to be featured in high profile media, advice from experts and mentors, and the opportunity to win up to $10,000  in the design concept round. Ten finalists and select invitees will compete for the Ray C. Anderson Foundation $100,000 “Ray of Hope” Prize, which will be awarded each year to the prototype round winner.


Visit to learn more and register.



Eligibility and Categories

  • The Challenge is open to high school students, university students, and professionals.
  • Teams are required; individuals may not submit.
  • Students may compete in a Student-only category, or enter the Open category.
  • Up to 10 Finalists from the Open category will be eligible to compete in the subsequent prototype round, which will award the $100,000 “Ray of Hope Prize.”



  • Registration provides access to our Biomimicry Design Challenge Toolbox, online sessions with biomimicry professionals and other subject matter experts, and access to the community forum.
  • Registration is free, but teams are required to pay an entry fee in order to submit their work for judging.
  • Entry fees:
  • Open category – $100
  • Student category – $40


TBI_Food_Challenge_PPT_FINAL-v2 (3)



Student category

1st prize: $5,000

2nd prize: $2,500

3rd prize: $1,000


Open Category

Up to 10 finalists will receive mentorship and incubation support services and an invitation to compete for the Ray C. Anderson Foundation’s $100,000 “Ray of Hope” Prize in a subsequent prototype round. The top 3 finalists will receive also receive cash prizes:

1st prize: $10,000

2nd prize:  $7,500

3rd prize:  $5,000



19 January

  • 2015 Challenge opens; Begin online registration


3 August:

  • Submissions due


7 August – 7 September:

  • Preliminary judging


4-7 October:

  • Finalists pitch event and awards ceremony at SXSW Eco in Austin, TX, USA
  • Prototype round begins for finalists
  • 2016 Challenge opens


TBI_Food_Challenge_PPT_FINAL-v2 (7)


TBI_Food_Challenge_PPT_FINAL-v2 (1)



Extend Our Help to Pagadian Fire Victim

Posted for: JCI  Fort Bonifacio


Pagadian Fire Victim

About  4,000 families were homeless affected by fire on June 1, 2015 at Brgy Santiago and Brgy San Pedro at Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur, South of the Philippines. JCI is activating Oplan Kaagapay to help raise aide for our brothers and sisters in Pagadian.

Donations are accepted via

Oplan Kaagapay account: Banco De Oro

Account Name: Junior Chamber International phils., Inc – Oplan Kaagapay

Account number: 002010172813


Please fax your deposit slip indicating your name and/or your Local Org Name and indicate ‪#‎beOKpagadian‬ to +632 3744138 or email to

Donations in cash or in kind may also be coursed through JCI Local organizations at Pagadian through Pres Dino Visitacion Mondarte (JCI Greater Pagadian) or Pres Ilyn Andale (JCI Yllana).

The evacuees are currently staying in four evacuation centers– the city gymnasium, the city covered court, Kawit National High School, and San Pedro Elementary School.

Victims are in need of food, soap, kitchen utensils, mats, blankets, clothes and most–shelter. Let us share what we have and what we can. Extend our help to Pagadian fire victim. 


JCI Oplan Kaagapay


More news about the homeless victims affected by the fire tragedy at:


About JCI Fort Bonifacio

JCI Fort Bonifacio

To know more and connect with the upcoming charity projects and meaningful activities of JCI Fort Bonifacio Taguig City, visit the facebook account:

Junior Chamber International Fort Bonifacio Taguig City

Or visit the official website at


Words and Images courtesy of JCI


Panagbenga Festival 2015

Photos and Words By: Margie Babon


Famous not only by stunning white beach, mountain scenery and surfing waves of the Pacific Ocean, Philippines is also well-known with the festivals happening in the different islands in the country.  Festivals that are mostly related to Roman Catholic culture since Philippines is the only country in Asia belonging to Catholic Religion. Like the famous Ati-atihan in Aklan and Sinulog festival in Cebu, both composed of street dancing carrying images and sculpture of saints and Sto. Niño or the baby Jesus.


The colorful parade of Panagbenga Festival

Yet, among the grand festivals I have seen in the Philippines, I was surprised that  it is not related to Catholic culture but honoring Mother Nature by showcasing beautiful flowers in the summer capital of the Philippines –Baguio City. The festival  famously known as “Panagbenga Festival” (Blooming Flowers Festival) which is a month-long annual festival held during the whole month of February in which thousands of people coming from different parts of the Philippines travel to Baguio to witness the celebration. The most awaited presentation or the grand day happens on the last 2 days of the month showcasing colorful floats covered with beautiful and colorful flower  and street parade where participants are wearing attractive and colorful costume signifying blooming flowers and other costume  inspired by the culture of indigenous people of Cordillera region.


in bloom

Flowers at Burnham Park

Few years ago, it was month of April my family went to Baguio City to catch the cool breeze and to get away from too much heat in Manila.  Baguio City is beautiful with pine trees and flowers especially in some of the tourist spots like Burnham Park, Mines View and Botanical Garden. But the recent vacation we had this year of February 26-28 for the Panagbenga Festival is such an amazing experience. Baguio is in full bloom surrounded by beautiful flowers.  It is also my first time to see the place fully crowded and my first time to see Burnham park surrounded by beautiful flowers! Panagbenga festival is a must see festival  in the Philippines. The float is so stunning, the creativity and ingenuity of Filipinos in assembling a piece out of flowers is so unbelievable. I also admire the participants of street parade that walk really far under the heat of the sun wearing costumes and headdress quite heavy and they still continue to perform and able to smile in front of the camera.


The colorful parade of Panagbenga Festival

To show the beauty and stunning Panagbenga Festival, here are the photos I captured where I and other photographers, media and tourist have been waited for three and half hours. The street parade started at 8:30, we were there at five in the morning. You need to be early to find a spot where you can take photo and video.

By the way, Panagbenga Festival is strict when taking photos; they put a rope as demarcation that the crowd must not get inside the street. There are police students assigned at every 2 meters. For you to take photos and videos inside is you must be a registered photographer, that the registration starts  as early as month of December at the tourism office of Baguio, which I do hope, they have online registration for traveler or tourist who wants to take photos. To be honest, I did not register , the reason I get up early and arrive at 5 in the morning, so that I can join the spots of media (ABS-CBN, GMA-7, RPN 9, MTV, etc) and with the other registered photographer and hobbyist and did some strategies how to capture along the road and get out of marking line.The street dance and parade starts at the Upper Session Road where all the media are located.  Since the parade takes more than 4 hours, if you arrive late than 10 in the morning, streets are closed and you cannot watch closer and look at the performance. So better arrive earlier than 9 in the morning near Burnham Park.

Here are the photos of Panagbenga Festival 2015.



Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo

Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo

Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo

Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo


Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo






Native costume of indigenous people of Cordillera


























Native costume of indigenous people of Cordillera

















































Float made of beautiful and colorful flowers. (Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo)

Float made of beautiful and colorful flowers. (Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo, appear on the photo)

Float made of beautiful and colorful flowers. (Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo)


Float made of beautiful and colorful flowers. (Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo)


Float made of colorful and beautiful flowers. (Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo)



Float made of colorful and beautiful flowers. (Photo courtesy of Cecil de Omampo)


Spectator at the Athletic Bowl where each group and delegates of Street Parade gather for the final round of performance facing the panel of judges. This is also where entries of float gather the next day (after the street parade) for final judging and awarding that almost reach 2 million pesos of prizes.


Thankful to all the street performer and participants who have been kind in taking photos though they are all tired after more than two hours of street parade and dance. For being so cooperative with me, directing them how to pose, where to look at and make them comfortable in front of the camera. I keep reminding them to relax their smile, face and hands, the stiffness and nervousness is reflected on the camera.

And most, thankful to my wonderful sister Cecil who got the idea to attend the Panagbenga Festival, though it is so crowded, all the stress were gone upon seeing the performer and the float full of flowers.


And this is my favorite performer, the fairies in very colorful costume and very creative design on their eyes and face.


To see other best of Panagbenga Festiva photos, visit my fotoblur account:

You can download the photos at my face book album Panagbenga Festival 2015

Shot Location: Baguio City, Philippines

Photography: Margie Babon 


About Margie Babon

pic-for hyperkreeytiv 2015

Margie Babon is fascinated to the wonders of nature and beauty of life and she is expressing it through writing, blogging, painting, photography and drawing.

A former college professor in both College of Architecture and School of Fine Arts  in Manila and a former  volunteer of an environmental organization that lead her  for the divine purpose of helping a community of indigenous people to claim the ancestral domain they have waited for more than 10 years.



“The Change We Want to See,” Share Your Vote





What priorities do you want the United Nations and global leaders to focus on? Let’s make it known by answering a quick survey of the UN. Over 1.5 Million People from 193 Countries have already had their say about the issues that are important to them. Its your turn to tell the UN about the World We Want. Visit to vote at MyWorld: The United Nations Global Survey for a Better World.


UN Millenium Goals



your vote does matter



you tube pic


Vote for Action on Climate Change. This means that governments should take on binding commitments to reduce carbon emissions to levels which can keep the global temperature rise below 2 degrees, and invest in adaptation measures particularly involving vulnerable communities.

UN Vote


See more updates by liking the face book page, “The Change We Want to See”

The Change We Want to See


To know more about JCI The Fort,  visit face book fan page.


Encourage your family and friends to participate and let the leaders know what are your priorities.

Share this post and vote now!


Help the Humanity Now; Donate for the Victims of Typhoon Yolanda

Written and posted by: Margie Babon


FLATTENED. Reports say that 100% of the structures in Guiuan, Eastern Samar are damaged. All photos - credit: AFP Central Command from their Facebook page:

FLATTENED. Reports say that 100% of the structures in Guiuan, Eastern Samar are damaged. All photos – credit: AFP Central Command from their Facebook page:


More than 10,000 people died and more than 2million families are affected by a deadly typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan) last Friday, November 8 when it hit the islands of Visayas particularly Tacloban, Guiuan at Eastern Samar, Leyte, Ilo-ilo, Cebu and Aklan  and  part of Luzon in Coron, Palawan.  The super typhoon that have washed away everything, carrying strong  wind of 315kph, heavy rains that cause zero visibility around and a storm surge in a flash from the rising ocean of 5-7 meters high left a massive trail of death and destruction.

Typhoon Yolanda is the srongest cyclonic storm on record to make landfall under category 5 Super Typhoon. According to the article Indy (link: “The sea surface temperature of the waters of the Western Pacific have been abnormally high. August 2013 had record global sea surface temperatures, Sea Surface temperatures are one of the factors that contributes to stronger tropical cyclones. “The waters [in that part of the Pacific] are extremely warm, so with the right atmospheric conditions and steering currents, you have the ideal making of a storm that can eventually develop into a super typhoon,” said Hans Graber, a professor of marine physics at Florida’s University of Miami in an article by National Geographic.


Upon seeing from the news of the devastated state in Tacloban, I couldn’t believe that even the concrete airport was strongly damaged, what have left are partly concrete ceiling and column. I was there 2 months ago for a photo-shoot of 50-year wedding anniversary. My heart is totally sinking upon seeing interviews from survivors, announcing to other relatives off from their place of what is their current situation. “My brother Ariel, don’t go home here anymore, mother died, all of our family members died, I was the only one survived,” said by a woman who is totally shocked.

“I myself can’t help, my family was also affected. I couldn’t believe this tragedy will wipe away our houses. We need water, we need clothes, medicine, we haven’t eaten for how many days, and we don’t have electricity, no communication at all. I want to help my neighbors and other people but I myself is totally helpless,” said by a Councilor from Guiuan , Eastern Samar  which he cannot control his emotions from crying.

From the statement of an army who also survived alone from the storm surge, “We arrived at eight in the morning for rescue operations in Tacloban, but the heavy rain is so strong, the wind is very loud, we went inside the hotel though  we want to rescue other people but the water is too high, we went to the second floor but still  it reaches us, we finally went to the third floor, but the water still getting higher, we crashed the ceiling of the hotel for us to go out but still the water is getting higher and higher, I hold on tightly  to the plywood, the current is so strong and drift me towards the open sea. The rest of my group of armies died, survived together with me is only a kid.”


With all the stories and news of the effects of the typhoon, people all over the world are aware of what had happened. All gratitude to the international help received by the Philippines by bringing huge aircraft and sea vessel bring loads of food, clothes and medicine.

To other people from different nations, and to the fellow Filipinos working abroad, this is your time to extend more of your kindness and service for the humanity. The Philippines is knocking at your generous and kind heart with any help that you can give, no matter how big or small it is.  Start checking your closet and give away clothes you do not wear, check the kitchen cabinet, if there are kitchen utensils and kitchen wares that are excess and that you don’t use at all, this is your time to give it away to the homeless victims of the typhoon.


“There is a hope after the storm,” the victims need help esp. basic necessities such as food, water, clothes and medicine.  Let us help the victims  to start a new life; we can be able to help them to build a new shelter. You can transfer and deposit cash donations through:

The Philippine Red Cross Metrobank Account:

Peso: 151-3-041631228

Dollar: 151-2-15100218-2

For international donors, you can donate to the Philippine Red Cross by selecting the Supertyphoon Yolanda campaign on their donation page.


The Philippine Red Cross requests the following in-kind donations and drop the goods at The Professional Tower, Boni, Mandaluyong City.

  1. Non-perishable food- rice, canned goods, bread, biscuits, etc.
  2. Clean drinking water and water purifier tablet
  3. Blanket and rubber slipper
  4. Toiletries- soap, shampoo, toilet paper, toothbrush, toothpaste, women’s sanitary supplies
  5. Infant supplies- disposable diaper, baby clothes, feeding bottle
  6. Medicine for kids and adults- cold and cough medicines, lozenges, paracetamol, antihistamine, ibuprofen, anti-diarrhea medicine, oral hydration salts
  7. First Aid Kit- bandages, bandaids, betadine, antibacterial cream
  8. Candle, matches, flashlights, batteries
  9. Cooking utensils, water storage utensils/buckets
  10. Mats and mattresses
  11. Mosquito nets, mosquito lotions
  12. Large cardboard boxes for storage and transport of donated goods


You can also connect with other organizations in your community conducting donations like Living Light Community under Caritas Manila.

Living Light Community, is giving donation through Caritas Manila, the social action arm of the Archdiocese of Manila, to help the victims of “Yolanda” in the Visayas. Caritas Damayan accepts donations in cash. Caritas Manila said in-cash donations are used to buy contents for the family emergency relief pack, materials and medicines for first aid kits.

Account Name: Caritas Manila, Inc.

  • BPI #3063-5357-01
  • BDO #5600-45905
  • UNION BANK #00-030-001227-5
  • METROBANK #175-3-17506954-3

For the proper acknowledgement of your cash donations through banks, kindly send a copy of your deposit slip via email or, or fax please to (632)563-9306.

There is also appeal for in-kind donations such as canned goods, potable water, rice, medicines, clothes, undergarments, beddings, linens, personal care and hygiene products, cleaning materials among others. For in-kind donations, you can drop-off your donation to:

  • Caritas Manila 2002 Jesus St., Pandacan Manila or
  • Radio Veritas office along West Avenue corner EDSA, Quezon City, or your nearest parish (drop-off centers) or
  • Living Light Community focal person c/o Edith Cruz, Rm.4146N. We will help gather the items and have it picked up by Caritas Manila.


List of other organizations raising funds and goods for the victim:



To see more than 300 photos stunning damages of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), visit this link:


How to help Typhoon Haiyan Survivor, read CNN news and full coverage:


To all the volunteers, media, local and international donors and countries giving millions of money, organizations gathering in-kind and cash donations, to all the photographer, bloggers and writer who document the disaster and continue seeking help, thank you so much for your  sharing your life, time and loving kindness.

Not only in cash and in-kind help, please do offer a prayer and a moment of silence for all the victims of Yolanda typhoon. As well as the people who are presently in the affected areas offering their skills and time volunteering for the betterment of the situation.

Life on Earth is much happier and successfully fulfilled if we continue to live with compassionate heart and becoming a blessing to others. We live in this Earth to serve, to give love and to share what we have.


“What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sigh and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.” –Saint Augustine




Lessons, Fun and Wisdom at the Global Mala in Manila

Posted By: Margie Babon


Asana class held in Solar Room started at 8:30. Global Mala in Manila is now in its 3rd year.

More than nine hundred beautiful soul of yogis and yoginis attended the Global Mala Project held at White Space in Makati last September 21.  With more than 40 classes offered in lecture, meditation and practice, I only attended seven of them. Classes are all interesting but quite confusing if you do not have exact plan on which classes you will attend and not. If you don’t have specific plan, you have to follow your intuition and guts. The class I attended started from 9:30 in the morning with Kundalini while the last ended at 9:30 in the evening in Yoga Trance Dance. Yes it is 12 hours of lesson, fun and wisdom!


Mother and child enjoying the music.


Kundalini Class

Teacher Harnadh wants us to visualize our Highest Self.

My first teacher Marissa Harnadh is so energetic and exciting upon seeing us. Even though the room is so small, still she manages to give us asana in easy to difficult level with pranayama in breath of fire. With all her happiness, joy, positive energy and beautiful aura, she filled the room with bliss, love and enormous inspiration. Here are the lessons I learned for an hour with teacher Harnadh:

  • From the beginning until the end of Kundalini class, she keeps on telling us to visualize our Highest Self. With eyes closed, imagine that you are looking at your Highest Self in a distance,   that distance is a gap, a gap that you must take as a path and that path is a journey of the present self. In that gap and distance, what are the actions you must take in order to meet your Highest Self. What are the activities you need to do in order to achieve those dreams you want to pursue. The actions are your preparation to meet your Highest Self. Welcome that path with love, spiritual guidance and positive energy. Feel the emotions of excitement when the present self and your Highest Self meet face to face. Imagine it as it is real, feel the joy in your heart. All this will happen upon accomplishing the person you want to become, your Highest Self.
  • “When was the last time you honor your heart?” The heart is the center of our body, mind and spirit.  Giving gratitude to your heart on a daily basis is healing and nourishment to your soul.
  • You are energy. The energy surrounding the universe is the same energy as the seven chakras in the body. Make that energy flowing by expressing your creativity and true identity (Satnam).


Practicing the breath of fire in 60 degrees arm like an eagle ready to soar.

  • Offer Love and Light to everything and everyone.  While in meditation, we sing a beautiful lyrics as we we imagine our loved ones, family and friends. This song makes our soul cry.

The long sun shine on you

Love surrounds you

Pure light be with you

Guide you

Guide you


Siri Prakash wearing white headdress on the left.


Enjoying my first Kundalini class, I decided to stay for another hour to attend the class of Kundalini teacher Siri Prakash from California. She teaches the “invisible power of woman.” That the

  • Woman is 16 times greater capacity than man but 16 times more sensitive than man.
  • Woman is not moody but it is the emotional imbalance that makes the woman reactive, unpredictable and confusing.
  • Moon being symbolized by feminine, woman has 11 moons in the body that affects the behavior and emotions.  And the center of the 11 moons is in the genital of a woman.


Vinyasa Flow

Building the energy at the core in this plank pose.


The energy is different in this huge crowd of Vinyasa class with live music under Monique Borja of Bliss Yoga, the most attended of eight asana class.


Yoga teacher Monique Borja assisting a yogi in her fold in child’s pose.


Monique encouraging the yogis to reach more of their ankle and lift off the chest from the mat while controlling the breath.



Pranayama Class

In easy pose, practice breathing before the start of asana and set an intention.


Part of  Eight Limbs of Yoga  is breathing or called Pranayama. Another great teacher after Kundalini and Vinyasa is life-coach, writer and yoga teacher Imee Contreras of Shakti Yoga.  For us to understand her teaching, we practice breathing technique in each lesson.

  • Pranayama is a subtle practice because it is about the natural flow of oxygen that flows in the brain and bloodstreams.
  •  Practicing pranayama is cleansing of the body.
  • The actual practice of pranayama is holding the breath and exhaling gently.
  • Pranayama has six different technique that warms up or cool down the body. Depending on the dosha (body type), breathing balances the dosha.
  • Type of breathing: (1) The clavicle or the collar bones has a very shallow form of breathing. (2) Thoracic breathing is breathing in the chest area that measures lung capacity. (3) Diaphragm breathing is a Yogic breathing. In a long inhalation, fill the ribs with air, expanding the belly, the side of the belly and the back and it feels that the chest will burst out. After controlling the inhalation, exhale gently. You will notice that the air passes through the chest and collar bones.
  • In breathing practice, always remember to sit in a comfortable position, make straight of the back:  the spinal cord and neck to avoid injury and difficulty in inhalation or exhalation.
  • The ratio in deep breathing is 4:6. Meaning, in every four counts of inhalation, exhale in six counts.
  • In practicing asana and meditation, deep breathing is a vehicle to move you inward towards your inner self and to be mindful of your consciousness.


In this one-legged Warrior Pose, focusing your gaze to a specific spot is the key while breathing is subtle.


  • There are six techniques in deep breathing, two techniques by the use of the tongue and and the rest by the nostril.
  • Always inhale and exhale with your nostril.
  • Practice 10minutes of deep breathing before starting asana practice. This will help you to move in each pose with ease.
  • Alternate nostril breathing technique will help you balance the Kundalini life force. In alternate breathing, you will notice that there is one dominant nostril. By practicing alternate breathing, you will balance your energy.
  • If you want to focus the vibrations and energy within your head to clear any blockages, practice the Humming Bee Breath. Sit in your comfortable position, back straight then use both thumbs to cover your ears then close your eyes. Long inhalation then exhale with “M” sounds. Here is an interesting fact about “M” sounds. People has different M sounds so  never compare one from another.
  • Breathing technique either can warm or cool the body depending on your needs. Here is a cooling technique for  balance if your body has a lot of heat. Fold your tongue and inhale with your tongue and exhale with your nostril. Try 5 breathing practice, you will feel coolness within your body.
  • Breath improves the quality of your life by supplying more oxygen to your entire body.

Bridge Pose variation.



Yoga Nidra

This is a guided meditation by Imee Contreras. Yoga Nidra is a 45-minutes relaxation that is an equivalent of 3 hrs. sleep. After the practice, it feels so refreshing and you feel like you just wake up in the morning and ready to face the day.

  • In Svasana or corpse pose, with eyes closed, make sure your body won’t touch anything.
  • Always remind yourself “I am awake and I won’t fall asleep.”
  • Visualize body parts, your fingers, toes, arms, forehead and legs.
  • Visualize things: ocean, waves, cross of the church, torrential rain, coffin beside the grave, red drifting clouds, birds over the sunset, ice-capped mountain, etc. (this vary according to the teacher or who will guide you).
  • Focusing on body part and visualize a number and mentally you will count and visualize numbers starting from 27 to 1. Ex. Focus on your forehead, visualize no. 27 and mentally rehearse, “27 rising, 27 falling.”  If you make mistake, go back to no. 27.


Drumming and Poi Workshop

David Esteban discusses the rhythm of playing drums.

“Just follow the rhythm,” according to David Esteban who leads the drumming workshop. Yogis follow his beat to create loud to weak or weak to loud music.


Yogis enjoying the workshop.


Joy and happiness surrounded the drumming workshop.


Yoga teacher Donna Francisco is playful in Poi.


Yogis are amazed in this part of Drumming workshop.


Yoga Tantra Dance

Yogi in Tantra Dance while holdins Poi.

The yoga tantra dance is led by the co- founder of Global Mala in Manila Teresa Herrera who is a famous model icon in the Philippines.

  • The class started in lying with our belly, moving the body side to side, then cat pose rotating the body clockwise and counter-clockwise.
  • Next pose was lying with our back, eyes closed, raising both legs and hands. Then we imagine that we are exploring the universe, moving our hands and feet freely.  I visualizing mine traveling as a light, seeing stars, galaxy and planets, in every turn I am guided by a lovely blue light.
  • To counterpart raising legs and hands, we do body twist. Twist to the left and look to the right and vice versa. That is an introduction to the yoga tantra dance. Right after, we do not need mats anymore, we dance with eyes closed, moving, exploring the vastness of the universe and went back to Earth to dance with the other yogis.
  • We ended the class in Svasana pose and easy pose to say “Namaste” to everyone.
  • I learned that the yoga tantra dance is a soulful dance. When you focus on your heart and with the guided music, the hands and feet are moving in its own way.


Lessons for Yogis and Aspiring Yogi

When you practice Yoga inward and rooted in your spiritual life, every pose is meaningful. You never think of any competition and comparison to anyone. Instead, you do your practice with all your divine energy and power.


Here are the lessons based on my experience and observation with other yogis during the whole day event.

  • When somebody stepped on your mat, it is not a problem. You do not need to get angry or resent. If you are disturbed, tell the person in a normal voice that you don’t want someone stepping on your mat. If the person who stepped on your mat is wearing a shoes or slippers, say in polite manner, “excuse me, my mat will get dirt from your shoes/slipper, will you please leave your slipper outside.”
  • (While waiting for another class, I encounter a woman who gets irritated when I occupy a blank space but her bag is far from where I seated.) When someone occupied the seats you left, do not get irritated, after all, your name is not written on that seat.
  • Learn to share your mat if the class is only for lecture and the room is so small.
  • Always be kind, give smile, and offer Love, Peace and Light. When you take Yoga Practice by heart and rooted in your Spiritual Life, in any venue of practice you do not bounce or throw anger to other yogis, now irritation or hatred. Practice yoga internally and not for outward appearance only.
  • “We are all One.” In yoga practice there is no competition, no judgments, no differences, and no comparison. You practice to know more of yourself, to have inner peace, to connect with your spirit and to know more of your potentials.


New found friend Daryll maximize the whole day event Global Mala in which both of us are first-timer.


Attending the Global Mala is a dream that I manifest. Few months ago as I turn the pages of Yoga Journal, my eyes get stuck on the center fold page of yoga festival. Everyone is happy, faces smiling, kids practicing, yogis practicing in a large crowd , with tantric dance, drums and poi. I told myself, “I want to experience this kind of event.” Then I put that page close to my heart and I imagine that experience inside me as it is real. Then, I did it! It was like magic! I thank the universe for making my dreams come true. As what the yoga teacher said, “In manifestation, you do not act, you surrender everything to the universe.”


Second to the rigth (in pink tank top) is Teresa Herrera, supermodel and co-founder of Global Mala in Manila. (In her right) is Pranayama teacher Imee Contreras. Beside me with pink sunglasses is a famous interior desgner and celebrity icon Tessa Prieto Valdez. (In her left) wearing white head dress is Kundalini teacher Marissa Harnadh.


To the organizer, sponsors, yoga teachers, studios,  yogis, media partner and volunteers who made the event possible, may your life filled with Love, Peace and Light. Thank you for bringing Global Mala in Manila and doing this for the love of yoga and charity!

Love, Light and Peace




About the Author

Margie Babon was given a privilege to be a wildlife photographer in 2006 that let her choose to become a vegetarian for seven years now. Has background in film making as a producer and researcher on the plight of Agta-Dumagat documentary film Children of the Mountains that garnered the 2005 Mark Haslam Awardee  in Toronto, Canada. Sharing her passion in photography, drawing & creative writing  is a great opportunity to express her wisdom which is beyond academic teaching career of more than five years in College of Architecture and School of Fine Arts.

Love Letter to Filipinos

By David H. Harwell
11:39 pm | Sunday, February 17th, 2013

I am writing to thank Filipinos for the way you have treated me here, and to pass on a lesson I learned from observing the differences between your culture and mine over the years.

I am an expatriate worker. I refer to myself as an OAW, an overseas American worker, as a bad joke. The work I do involves a lot of traveling and changing locations, and I do it alone, without family. I have been in 21 countries now, not including my own. It was fun at first.  Now, many years later, I am getting tired. The Philippines remains my favorite country of all, though, and I’d like to tell you why before I have to go away again.

I have lived for short periods here, traveled here, and have family and friends here. My own family of origin in the United States is like that of many Americans—not much of a family. Americans do not stay very close to their families, geographically or emotionally, and that is a major mistake. I have long been looking for a home and a family, and the Philippines is the only place I have lived where people honestly seem to understand how important their families are.

I am American and hard-headed. I am a teacher, but it takes me a long time to learn some things. But I’ve been trying, and your culture has been patient in trying to teach me.

In the countries where I’ve lived and worked, all over the Middle East and Asia, it is Filipinos who do all the work and make everything happen. When I am working in a new company abroad, I seek out the Filipino staff when I need help getting something done, and done right. Your international reputation as employees is that you work hard, don’t complain, and are very capable. If all the Filipinos were to go home from the Middle East, the world would stop. Oil is the lifeblood of the world, but without Filipinos, the oil will not come from the ground, it will not be loaded onto the ships, and the ships will not sail.  The offices that make the deals and collect the payments will not even open in the morning. The schools will not have teachers, and, of course, the hospitals will have no staff.

What I have seen, that many of you have not seen, is how your family members, the ones who are overseas Filipino workers, do not tell you much about how hard their lives actually are. OFWs are very often mistreated in other countries, at work and in their personal lives. You probably have not heard much about how they do all the work but are severely underpaid, because they know that the money they are earning must be sent home to you, who depend on them.  The OFWs are very strong people, perhaps the strongest I have ever seen. They have their pictures taken in front of nice shops and locations to post on Facebook so that you won’t worry about them. But every Pinoy I have ever met abroad misses his/her family very, very much.

I often pity those of you who go to America. You see pictures of their houses and cars, but not what it took to get those things. We have nice things, too many things, in America, but we take on an incredible debt to get them, and the debt is lifelong.  America’s economy is based on debt. Very rarely is a house, car, nice piece of clothing, electronic appliance, and often even food, paid for.  We get them with credit, and this debt will take all of our lifetime to pay. That burden is true for anyone in America—the OFWs, those who are married to Americans, and the Americans themselves.

Most of us allow the American Dream to become the American Trap. Some of you who go there make it back home, but you give up most of your lives before you do. Some of you who go there learn the very bad American habits of wanting too many things in your hands, and the result is that you live only to work, instead of working only to live. The things we own actually own us. That is the great mistake we Americans make in our lives. We live only to work, and we work only to buy more things that we don’t need.  We lose our lives in the process.

I have sometimes tried to explain it like this: In America, our hands are full, but our hearts are empty.

You have many problems here, I understand that. Americans worry about having new cars, Filipinos worry about having enough food to eat. That’s an enormous difference. But do not envy us, because we should learn something from you. What I see is that even when your hands are empty, your hearts remain full.

I have many privileges in the countries where I work, because I am an expat. I do not deserve these things, but I have them. However, in every country I visit, I see that you are there also, taking care of your families, friends, bosses, and coworkers first, and yourselves last. And you have always taken care of me, in this country and in every other place where I have been.

These are places where I have been very alone, very tired, very hungry, and very worried, but there have always been Filipinos in my offices, in the shops, in the restaurants, in the hospitals, everywhere, who smile at and take good care of me. I always try to let you know that I have lived and traveled in the Philippines and how much I like your country. I know that behind those smiles of yours, here and abroad, are many worries and problems.

Please know that at least one of us expats has seen what you do for others and understands that you have a story behind your smiles. Know that at least one of us admires you, respects you, and thanks you for your sacrifices. Salamat po. Ingat lagi. Mahal ko kayong lahat. 

About the Author
David H. Harwell, PhD, is a former professor and assistant dean in the United States who now travels and works abroad designing language training programs. He is a published author and a son of a retired news editor.


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