Helping Hams

Photo credit: Sidney Snoeck

I was always amazed that very young children from Botokan could walk around without their parents and not get lost.
These were toddlers, babies even-- darting across the streets in tattered clothes, half naked.
I lived not far away from these shanties that were without electricity or running water.

The other day, a comment was left on a previous post:

"we must recognize that the world is filled with both joy and sadness; that we must never forget that there is joy and sadness; and that we must try to live in joy without ever forgetting or denigrating the sadness which pervades our world.
I don't want to ignore the world's sadness. I don't want to lose sight of what is in front of my nose. I want to be joyful even as I am sad. I want to see the world as it is."~Glenn

I agree.
And I want to do something about it.
This is what the "Helping Hams" project is all about.
The plan is to be able to distribute as many hams as possible to the families in the Botokan area this coming December 2007.
Why hams? It is special filipino Christmas fare tradition and it does not need refrigeration.

As of today, Steve and I have set aside money to buy 100 hams.
100 hams for 100 families.
But we have 10 more months to make more.
You can help.
If you are interested in donating money,
please email me at chescasilva@gmail.com
We know that it is not going to end poverty but a little bit of ham might make a child's christmas just a little bit more special.
That is the hope anyway.


  1. Count us in for 5 hams, at least for now. This is a great project, Ches.
    Thanks for thinking of it!!!

  2. Wow, I'm blown away by your remarkable social conscience...blogging with a cause is so infectious.
    Thanks for adding me to your bloglines.
    I'll support the hams and would love a Dogs Know t-shirt...tell me the details!

  3. I meant "blogroll" not lines...I'm so hopeless at this techno speak!

  4. Dear Chesca,
    What a beautiful project. Please count us in for at least 2 hams.
    And we wish that you'll be able to have more in the coming nine months.
    Daddy and Mommy.

  5. Hey Chesca.
    Thanks for droping by my blog.


  6. A very worthy post.

    Glad to see you at the Party and on my Journal!

  7. DEAR Chesca,
    Sorry, we meant 4 not just 2. O.K?

    D and M

  8. yup yup, i know tetel (christle) and zal (gonzalo) fernandez. they lived a block away from my family's old house in sampaloc. im so sorry to hear about their dad's passing away. mrs. sylvia fernandez is one of my major influences. i will always be grateful to her.

    i know bonbon (clarissa) benitez. i dont think she will remember me because i was an average student in high school. she was a year ahead of me in high school. she was the president of the UST high school junior red cross society in 1981-1982. but i know bonbon;s friends: fe doreen bulan, eloida ballelos, cristina pangilinan, teila matilda avendano and several others. they were my high school idols of sorts. bonbon was very smart.

    i had friends from intarmed but i do not know where they are right now: jason de villa, tem de villa, oscar florendo jr, linette linsangan and a few others. my mind is like a data base when it is provoked by nostalgia. weird talaga.

    thanks for dropping by!


    p.s. some maryknoll hs people that i remember are: jennifer nicolas, '84 (a classmate in college), and bernardita romualdo '85 (from UPLB). aina de guzma (maryknoll hs '86 or '87) became my student during my first years in diliman. i remember ariel ureta had his afternoon-early evening show patok na patok during maryknoll's student fair in 1982 and martin nievera launched his career by singing his very first single HOLIDAY during the fair. nobody would ever imagine that he will be a big star after that gig. martin would later attend UP for a year or two. small world talaga.

  9. btw, guillermo amurao and jessie escueta were from UP PT. do you remember them?

  10. the thought is very good.I wish matapos na lahat ng problema sa mundo, walang mayaman walang mahirap.
    Even we could help, there are times, kulang pa rin.

    Only Our Creator can do something... justice must be done...

  11. as of 3/5/07
    charissa,M&D,t&g (talaga ba?)a&r,
    cce,mike,oracle,becky and becky's mom
    are in.
    thank you.

  12. Swinging in for the party. Nice to meet ya. My 3rd party favor give away has started.

    Come on over when ya get a chance.

    PARTY ON!!!!

  13. Thanks for stopping by, I'd say you're definitely not swimming alone.

  14. chesca, search google for a girl named gionna cabrera.she was miss philippines for miss universe in 2006 (from poveda i think, then UAP for college, the former CRC in ortigas). show her pics to your husband and kids. you actually look alike! sayang. you would have won in the 1980s. maryknoll has a track record in these things. she was discovered and trained by UP student leaders (jonas gaffud and nad bronce).

  15. wendell,
    you need to get your eyes checked.

  16. exskindiver,

    i admire you for embarking on this wonderful project. i am sure the poor people from Botokan would appreciate your thoughtfulness and kindness. kudos to you!

  17. Emailed11:52 AM

    hi chesca!!!
    of course i want to participate, let me know when you need my contribution and give me your address again so i can mail it to you right away.

    i'm so proud of you talaga!!!

    thanks for giving me a chance to give back a little somethimg to our community!

    mary ann (magbag) antonio

  18. My new contest is up and running and everyone is eligible to enter, come on over and give it a try.

  19. Count us in for two. Great idea!

  20. Charity sees the need, not the cause; and a kind and compassionate act is often its own reward. Count me in, Ches! By the way, lest i forget...You are not swimming alone. And i kid you not! Mabuhay!

  21. And oh! Allow me to repost this post in my blog. Hopefully, a lot of people will go the extra mile this coming Christmas for our brothers and sisters, and sons and daughters in Botokan....

  22. Ches, this is a wonderful project! Do you know how many hams you need exactly? Maybe someone can check for you how many families there are now in Botokan. Could you email me - cathybabao@gmail.com and I'll try to see what I can do from here in terms of getting a ham company sponsor some of your hams. Galing! God bless your heart :)


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