“Feels like we’re kids all over again!,” exclaimed Chris Castillo after being a “kuya” to his adopted sibling during the For The Kids Festival: La Viva Nino- A Carnival of Wonders held one Sunday at the De La Salle University. It was not Chris’ usual kuya role as together with 30 other Globe employees and 1,000 DLSU students and staff, they provided a fun experience for 580 special children through play, arts, crafts, and dance.
Patrick Omar Erestain of Globe Corporate Social Responsibility joins the kids in a simple modern dance exercise
For the Kids (FTK) is a mini Olympics for children from different schools, institutions, and centers around Metro Manila who have physical, emotional, and mental difficulties and challenges. It is an annual activity being conducted by DLSU Center for Social Concern and Action (DLSU-COSCA) for the past 27 years and is a big part of the La Sallian tradition of serving kids with special needs.
“I realized that time is something I can give. A couple of hours can make a big difference. These children only need acceptance, patience, understanding, love and open-mindedness. I enjoyed the event so much since I felt like I was a part of them. They allowed me to enter their world. I volunteered because I believe we are designed to help one another. It just feels good inside to give unconditionally,” said Chris, a Finance Specialist.
For most Globe volunteers who joined the event, it was their first time to handle children with special needs yet, all of them considered it a very rewarding experience. Lawyer Didi Javier, Director for Workplace Enhancement and Customer Support who was assigned to the arts and crafts section said physical disability was never a barrier in interacting with the kids as they showed their appreciation by clapping their hands or by hugging the ate and kuya volunteers. To this, Didi reflected that volunteering is not only very fulfilling but is also a way for Globe employees and their families to share their blessings.
Didi Javier encourages a young girl during the arts session
Twenty three-year old Ryan Toralde, Analytics Expert from Customer Experience said: I am truly grateful to be part of this life-changing event. I’ve learned a lot from this volunteering activity and looking forward to similar events like this. It improved my knowledge and patience in handling children in general. It felt so good.”
Witnessing the happiness and energy of the children while teaching dance, on the other hand, was priceless for 30-year old Emmel Lianko of Executive Escalation and Service Recovery who said: “It is really a wonderful experience to interact with the children with special needs. The happiness and energy that they’ve shown while we were teaching them how to dance is very valuable to us. It was a priceless experience.”
One of the children happily follows the dance steps Emmel Lianko demonstrates
Globe is a strong advocate of employee volunteerism and has even introduced the volunteer time-off policy in 2014 to promote volunteerism across the company and to enable its employees to contribute to social development.
“We continue to encourage participation in volunteer programs as a way to increase employee engagement. By giving employees a chance to support their charitable pursuits, Globe is also able to help boost their morale and productivity,” said Fernando Esguerra, Director of Globe Corporate Social Responsibility.
However, employee volunteerism is not merely an altruistic initiative of Globe. Driven by its commitment to sustainability, employee volunteerism also enables the company to create a #WonderfulPH through nation building. Globe provides activity-based and skill-based volunteering to support the work of a partner community or organization by joining various advocacies and providing pro-bono services, skills transfer, or capacity building.
At the end of the day, volunteering may be tiring but for Globe employees, making a difference in the lives of less fortunate Filipinos is already time and effort well spent. Everyone who share the same passion for volunteerism and nation building may explore opportunities in Globe by visiting: www.globe.com.ph/careers.