Edwin Runs a tour called True Manila in the Philippines. Essentially it’s an opportunity to visit the projects in Manila, meet local families and offer a small bit of charity in the form of cheap snacks for the kids and Rice and Noodles for the families. It’s the only place I’ve seen this. It’s a chance to see how people in poverty stricken countries live in the poor neighborhoods without feeling like a intruder. You walk the through shanty towns, visit their homes and meet the families. Edwin and True Manila have also set goals to start raising money to offer children from the projects the opportunity to go to school in an attempt to change their lives.
The reason Edwin started this was because of one story he told.
Years ago there was a boy from the projects that started following two Americans walking through his neighborhood. The boy was 10 years old, from a really poor family and couldn’t speak any English except, “photo”.
The Americans took the photo he requested and offered him a meal and some Coca Cola. They ended up seeing this kid several more times during their stay and ended up forming a bond with him. Over the next several years the two Americans did everything they could to offer help to this kid in the form of small amounts of money and guidance. The boy ended up learning English, going to school, and eventually college. In time the boy became an actor, has been in commercials and just finished his first movie as the lead actor. Shortly after starring in the movie the boy started true Manila.
Edwin was telling us his story. How a few people passing through his neighborhood changed his life, and how he wished the same for others.