It’s almost 8am and the temperature is a balmy 15 degrees. It’s quite a change from the heat of the Philippines, yet it is always good to be back in the states after a trip abroad.
Allen and I returned late Saturday after seven days of work in the Philippines. I admit I was feeling rough and dragging a little by the time we got back to Raleigh. I was also fighting a cold and bad throat. I slept for 14 hours straight and then napped even more Sunday afternoon. I slept well again last night and am now again feeling human.
It was a good trip. In fact, it was an excellent trip. We accomplished all we had set out to do, and even more.
We were able to assess the extent of the typhoon damage and see the desperate need in one of the impacted areas in northern Cebu.
We were able to meet with numerous Philippine partners to help coordinate ongoing relief efforts.
We coordinated the distribution of the million & a half Stop Hunger Now meals arriving to help feed typhoon victims
We delivered over 1100 Sawyer water filters for distribution in the impacted areas.
We were able to share quality time with one of our supporters and allow him to see the impact of our work in the field.
We spent time with Tiki Keh, the Executive Director of Stop Hunger Now Malaysia.
We participated along with almost 500 volunteers in a 120,000 Stop Hunger Now meal packaging event totally organized and run by Philippine Rotarians.
We deepened our partnership with Wine to Water and again demonstrated the power of working together for the greater good.
We live in a world growing ever more depersonalized, Electronic communication often replaces everything else. Being with our friends in the Philippines after Super Typhoon Haiyan demonstrates that there are times, however, when nothing compares to personal relationships and caring enough to be present.
Stop Hunger Now has just finished a thee-day staff retreat at Blackstone, Virgina. The 66 full time staff in attendance worked hard (and played hard) while we together. We also spent a great deal of time getting reconnected with each other and just sharing war stories. Even though we are scattered from coast-to-coast, we share close bond that keeps us centered on the wonderful mission in which we are all so passionately engaged.
Every staff retreat gets larger, with more and more new folks coming on board. That is gratifying. But, far more gratifying is seeing the quality and the unbelievable commitment of those present. Every outside speaker that presents to the staff, and every new member of the staff all make the same observation: nowhere have they felt and experienced the passion, dedication and engagement they they see in the Stop Hunger Now staff.
I totally agree. The Stop Hunger Now staff are tireless in their commitment to create a world without hunger. They are true superstars in the fight to end hunger in our lifetime. While we were together at Blackstone we celebrated a enormous milestone in the life of our organization. Stop Hunger Now has now packaged over 100 million meals for the hungry and malnourished of our world.
That is a huge accomplishment. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers have demonstrated that we can all make a difference. Working together we really can change the world.
Those volunteers were led by Stop Hunger Now staff that are true heroes in the fight to end hunger. I am tremendously proud and deeply honored to be associated with them.
Thank you team. “You are crazy good at what you do!”