The Uniform Project

Filipino boy in his new school uniform

Yesterday I woke up feeling awful: yet another mostly sleepless night, feeling yuk and not wanting to get out of bed, wanting to sleep in the afternoon, not having any energy, looking in the mirror and feeling ugly and unattractive, getting angry and irritable with my adopted son for being naughty at school, craving sugar and soft drink. So on a whim I decided to do something about it.

I videoed myself yesterday afternoon whining about looking and feeling awful and made a pledge to focus all my efforts for the next #56Days (8 weeks) on looking and feeling great. I’m an Australian woman living here in an impoverished rural area of the Philippines so one of my first initiatives towards feeling great is providing school uniforms for the kids who go to the school here just down the road. Helping someone else ALWAYS makes you feel good.

These kids have so very little and their joyful smiles and positive attitudes often leaves me feeling disappointed in my own negativity because their problems are far greater and wider reaching than mine. These kids who dress most of their days in rags feel ashamed to attend school when they don’t own shoes or can’t afford a school uniform (absences at the school are high). In a lot of cases if they actually do have a uniform they only own one, so on washing days they may not go to school because they have nothing else to wear. I also see a lot of these kids wearing their school clothes on weekends or after school for the same reason. They don’t have any other clothes.

I’m calling it the #uniformproject so please tell your friends to enrol in the course. And of course if you want to get involved I’ll never say no to a donation: click through to the help page to find out more.

Uniform 1: Roy (Grade 6)

11 July 2017 (Melinda J. Irvine)

Meet Roy, a 13 year old boy in Grade 6. His father died in 2014 and since that time Roy regularly has days where he has little or sometimes nothing at all to eat. It was a joy to take Roy to the market yesterday afternoon and buy 3 full school uniforms as well as school shoes and enough socks for the whole week. I’ve been sending a big lunch to Roy’s school every day for a bit over a week now and he has been at school every day. Just look at the excitement of his classmates encouraging him to have his photo taken in his new clothes. I was paid for a freelancing contract yesterday so I was happy to be able to buy Roy a uniform.

Uniform 2: Rona May (Grade 4)

24 July 2017 (Stamps for the Visayans)

Rona May is Roy’s younger sister. On Friday I went to the school to deliver her lunch but found her sitting in a tricycle in some ragged clothes. She didn’t go to school because she had nothing to wear. I took her to the market and bought 3 x school uniform, 5 x underwear, 5 x socks as well as school shoes. I was very excited to take her lunch this morning and see her lined up to sing the national anthem in her new school clothes. The money for the uniform was provided by my Uncle Richard A. Ward and his Stamps for the Visayans initiative.

Uniform 3: Ronalin (Grade 1)

24 July 2017 (Stamps for the Visayans)

Ronalin is Roy and Rona May’s youngest sister. This little girl had a very old torn skirt with a broken zipper and no shoes at all. She was very very shy in the market stores buying her clothes but came to life when she saw a pink headband with a bow near the checkout counter. She eagerly asked me if she could have one of those too. Again, the money for the uniform was provided by my Uncle Richard A. Ward and his Stamps for the Visayans initiative.

Uniform 4: Shelia May (Grade 4)

29 July 2017 (Stamps for the Visayans)

Shelia May is the first cousin of the other three kids. Her and Rona May are inseparable, even sitting together in the classroom. Again, the money for the uniform was provided by my Uncle Richard A. Ward and his Stamps for the Visayans initiative.

Uniform 5 (Nathaniel)

Nathaniel came to me and asked if he could have a uniform too, including a pair of school shoes. It was wonderful being able to help him.

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