Purificacion spent sleepless and helpless nights hatching up ways to make ends meet for her and her three children. The pressure to survive a hand-to-mouth existence, evade the relentless debtors chasing her family and the brunt of the pandemic were just unbearable! Her children became her shock absorber, stress reliever, and punching ball. When Protect Children PH Project came in the barangay, Purificacion’s family life and relationship with her children took a detour towards hope.
Purificacion is one of the beneficiaries of the livelihood support program under Save the Children Philippines’ Protect Children PH Project in Tagum City. Under the program, she was able to start life again with the capital provided for her banana business. She and her children also participated in community-wide learning sessions where children’s rights, protection, and positive parenting were explained and discussed. Purificacion also realized that the livelihood program gave her the means to provide for her children who would otherwise become vulnerable to online sexual abuse and exploitation (OSAEC) rampant in the area.
“My guilt over not having enough food, enough money, and enough resources to provide for my children has made me a cruel and unreasonable parent. The Protect Children PH Project program helped me see the errors of my ways. My children are my life. I learned that my relationship with them is better when I raise them in love.”
Today, Purificacion is slowly but surely living a good life. Earning her keep from PhP1,500 on a normal day and PhP2,000 on a blessed day is putting a smile on her face, food on the table, and shelter over their heads. Her children are also in school, studying with their stomachs full.
“My parents disciplined me by profuse scolding and beating as a punishment. But it no longer works for my kids today. They are smart. They now know their rights and understand why it is important,” Purificacion declared.
Save the Children Philippines has trained more than 10,000 children and more than 200 parents in Child Rights, Child Protection and OSAEC since its launch in 2020. It also conducted capacity building trainings to 200 families who are enrolled in the livelihood program.