February 2011

Edmonton Friends Bring Joy to Children of Tarlac

A group of GK supporters travelled all the way from Alberta, Canada to install the playground equipment that they donated. And they brought with them the province’s Minister of Employment and Immigration Thomas Lukaszuk to give a helping hand. Also present was Stacey Brotzel of CTV Breakfast Television who did double duty as journalist. (You can read about her experience here http://blogs.btedmonton.ca/stacey/back-home-how-a-playground-changed-lives ).

The seventeen or so contingent was mostly from the Castle Downs Recreation Society that donated the equipment and raised money for its shipping and installation. Not only that --- the society also solicited donations of school supplies and sporting goods to fill the container.

The initiators of the project were two architects, Paul Hastings and George Ilagan, who vowed to continue building homes for the rich so they could help the poor.

The Canadians brought smiles to the faces of not only the children but their parents as well. Now the children of the village in Gerona, Tarlac have a playground. One parent said: “ We now get a playground. I thought they were just for the rich.”

To most Canadians, the second-hand playground equipment from the Castle Down Recreation Society was junk, even though it was in good condition. It was torn down in order to be replaced by a state-of-the-art equipment, more suited to a First World country. But to the poor in a Third World country the salvaged playground meant a lot, “a treasured jewel for those who have nothing” observed the journalist.

Thank you friends from Edmonton. Thank you too to the residents of the GK Edmonton Friends Village for their willingness to share their playground with the other children in the area.