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    • Day10

      Bacolod Day 9

      March 31, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

      Construction and health check-up (blood pressure check and fasting blood sugar) are the activities for today.

      I started some workers on metoprolol 50 mg. For those who are currently on medication, I had to increase their dosage. The blood sugar of Mr. Shankar was very high, so less rice intake
      please :)

      The afternoon was spent at Riverside College (Nursing School). We had a tour of the nursing skills lab, chemistry lab, med tech lab, operating room and delivery room. Mrs. Juliet Villanueva (Sir Butch's wife), clinical instructor Jay (33 years with the nursing school) and younger nurse lecturer Jay (who have been to Singapore for Zouk Out) guided us in our tour of the school facilities.

      One group went to hardware store and the rest of the group practiced for their cultural performance on Sunday.
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      wow! finished na :-)

    • Day3

      Bacolod Day 3

      March 24, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

      We had breakfast at 6:45, and the first day of construction started at 8 in the morning. Students were divided into 3 groups, 1st group was assigned in the production line (bamboo, metal works), the 2nd group in the house foundation excavation and the 3rd group in the cement mixing and floor construction.

      The afternoon was spent doing home visits and family interviews. As part of their cultural and sports exchange, students competed with the local team. Our basket team was obviously overwhelmed by the talents of the locals :)
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    • Day6

      Bacolod Day 6

      March 27, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

      We had a whole day of construction at the Cabug site.

      In the afternoon, my students did a health check-up. The workers were so excited that they abandoned their work for an hour to queue up for their BP to be taken. Ten of the 32 workers had high blood pressure and were given medical advice and put on further monitoring for the next 3 days.

      The other group of students continued the house painting of the "green" house.

      The evening was devoted to Tagalog and Illongo classes. The GK student scholars volunteered to teach my students. They are Roy, Pepoy, Grace, Nice and Charish. The class ended with a song called "Tuloy Parin" (Still Go On).

      Off to Orphanage!
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    • Day5

      Bacolod Day 5

      March 26, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

      Sunday is farming day!

      Groups were divided into plowing, excavation and irrigation teams. At the end of the day, we finished 4 plots that made up 4 weekends of work if left for the community garden team to work alone. My team was so happy that they can see tangible results for the community.

      In the afternoon, 1 group continued the house renovation and painting, another group continued farming and 3rd group went to the grocery to buy donation materials for our upcoming orphanage immersion that would be in a couple of days.

      The group capped the night by practicing their performance for the cultural night.
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    • Day10

      Bacolod Day 10

      March 31, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

      I celebrate my work anniversary with the School of Health Sciences Ngee Ann Polytechnic on the last day of March. Today, I woke up early (naturally waking up) and went for a walk
      in the community.

      The group was divided into the construction team and the orphanage team. At the Cabug site, the construction team settled into the tasks that they were most comfortable with. The other group spent time with the orphans and gave them their lunch meal (rice and tinolang manok - a kind of chicken stew). The team presented a gift to Mr. Mon and Renan at the construction site. At the orphanage, the other team gave the crib and bed frames (painted by the group) as a donation to the Holy Infant Nursery headed by Ms. Juliet.

      During the afternoon we went for a hospital visit at Corazon Locsin Montelibano Regional Hospital. With newer facilties, building and equipment, the clinic seems well prepared to handle special kids and OBGYN cases. Thanks to Dr Gabriel Hinolan, the Chief Nurse, the 4 medical interns and the staff that made our visit and tour memorable.
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    • Day7

      Bacolod Day 7

      March 28, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

      It's been a week!

      Today, Adila's group started early as they prepared sandwiches for the orphans. We reached the Holy Infant Nursery and met Ms. Juliet, the directress of the orphanage.

      Our group interacted with the 23 kids at the nursery, whose ages ranged from 1-7 years old.

      We spent the whole day in the nursery and our task included feeding, nursing, playing with the kids, and even assisting the kids as they "passed motion" or defecated.

      It was heart-wrenching to find out how some of the orphans journeyed before reaching the nursery. One of the 2 year-old-boys was abandoned in the wet market and luckily someone brought him to the orphanage. Many more kids came from similar situations, I hope their young memories will not remember how they were abandoned but how they were rescued and loved at the nursery. I hope that through adoption, some of them get a family and a home.

      A whole day of fun nevertheless with these orphan (foundling) kids.
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    • Day11

      Bacolod Day 11

      April 1, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

      Today was the last day of construction at the Cabug site :)

      We conducted a health check up in the community and construction site in the morning. Our groups donated shovels, gloves, goggles (PPE) and hats to the construction workers. We got to talk to Father Javier from Spain who runs the Franciscan Church near the GK site.

      We spent the afternoon at the Negros Occidental Museum and did some quick souvenir hunting at 888 shop.
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    • Day2

      Bacolod Day 2

      March 23, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

      Sunrise was at 5:59am today.

      Our group is not yet used to earlier mornings. Sunrise before 6 in the morning is unheard of and not usually experienced in Singapore.

      Our day started with early breakfast at 7:30. By 8:30 we were off to our 1st ocular visit (recci for reconnaissance as more popularly used in Singapore) at Cabug site. We inspected our construction site, had a short briefing about the use of technology to improved the housing structure against the environment and strong typhoon. We also visited the houses we help built 5 years ago and with our trip banner, we took a group photo with the GK houses as our background.

      We spent another hour mingling with the house beneficiaries and a lady even freshly picked papaya from her house garden and peeled it for us. Such generosity from someone who has so much less :) On the side, students were so amused with the scenery and the animals freely roaming in the farms and in the sugarcane plantation. Chickens, goats, water buffaloes, dogs, and whatnot were not in cages, my students were amazed as they were more familiar seeing these animals inside the zoo.

      Then we visited the ICM site, a mix of GK houses and informal settlers. The walk thru was an eye opener for most of my students as some of them had not seen a slum area before. As a feedback, some said that they've never seen so much divide in socio-economic status. They described it as the left side of the street as slum area, and right side of the street as a gated community with huge mansions.

      The afternoon was spent for reflection and debrief. A quick visit to the grocery before a sumptuous dinner. Building our 1st house tomorrow!
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    • Day4

      Bacolod Day 4

      March 25, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ⛅ 9 °C

      Build Day 2. Our group was in high spirit as we embark on day 2 of construction at Cabug site. The tasks were rotated so as to give equal chance for students to experience different parts of building a house.

      Lunch was chicken pochero and beef bopis. Fish was also served.

      In the afternoon, two groups had home visits in Cabug. Each group had to cover 6 families. The third group stayed at ERH Village and started the "Bihis Bahay" program (to dress house) which included cleaning the house in preparation for painting and renovation.

      We also did a quick visit to the hardware store to buy paint, tools, and gardening materials.
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    • Day12

      Bacolod Day 12

      April 2, 2017 on the Philippines ⋅ ⛅ 30 °C

      A lot of work to finish today: house renovation, chapel painting, farming, setting up water irrigation system and health education. Wow!

      Tonight was Singapore Night. Local and Singapore team performed for the critical audience: the kids, men and women of the ERH GK Village.

      The celebration started at 8:30pm and the scholars headed by Roy organized the programme. It was complete with prayer, the national anthem of both Philippines and Singapore, and 3 performances each from local and Singaporean students. The party ended with kids from the community having time to dance and eat snacks and a milk drink :)
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Sumag, Sum-Ag

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