Poverty and Love

27 10 2009

The Philippines is known as a third world country where the rate of poverty is very high. Growing up being familiarized with all the hardships and challenges that my fellow Filipinos were bound to face created a sense of admiration on my behalf. In the news, we always see Filipinos in despair, sadness, usually due to the issue of poverty. From losing family members from diseases, malnutrition/starvation, natural calamities, and crimes, Filipinos are bound to face all these tribulations in life.
One thing that catches my attention, however, is the unbelievable camaraderie, that sense of being a “family” among the Filipinos. From what I have observed, thousands of Filipinos who live in absolutely horrible conditions never cease to manage to carry that smile on their face. When it comes to family, I can see the feeling of love, belonging, something that money can’t buy. I really admire these Filipinos living in poverty who still manage to keep their families together in one home, instead of separating from each other.
About a few days ago, I was watching TFC at my auntie’s house. The show “Wowowee” was on. This Filipino variety show is a favorite among Filipinos from all backgrounds. While watching the show, I was very much amazed when the game players were older men and women who came all the way from different regions just to have that chance of being able to be a contestant. Most of them ended up crying in tears, telling the host of the show about their life situations, having a common theme of struggles due to poverty. What really touched my heart was how they all expressed their love to their family members, addressing words that pertain to how what matters to them most, even without a lot of income, would be the love of their family. Even with the worst challenges in life, they seem to be striving harder instead of complaining. Overall, knowing how all these fellow Filipinos feel this way regarding their current situation made me think twice about how I even stress about the simplest of things. It made me appreciate what I have more, because what I have around me, especially the love coming from my loved ones, is something that money can’t buy.

By Justine Encarnacion

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