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"Why I'm A Champion for Children"

© UNICEF PHI/2009/Alquinto

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In every issue of our Children First Newsletter, we do a special feature on our monthly pledge donors who wish to share with us their unique reasons for signing up to be UNICEF Champions for Children.

 Tracy Santander

At first, I was quite reluctant to sign up for UNICEF Champion for Children. But when I received my very first thank you card, it was overwhelming and fulfilling. I knew right there and then that I made the right decision, probably my best yet. The joy of knowing we are helping less fortunate children have a better future is incomparable and priceless. So here's a toast to us CHAMPIONS. Cheers!!!


 Marianne de Luna-Iporac

It was my birthday when I signed up to be a UNICEF champion for children. I thought that life has always been good to me and as much as I wanted to receive more blessings, I wanted to be a blessing to others as well. Since I have always believed in paying it forward, I signed a monthly pledge donation. UNICEF has given me the opportunity to help and do something nice for children I don't know. I hope these children appreciate the help they receive, strive hard to be the best person they can be, and in return help others when they can.


 Ryan Fenix

Wanting to help, and being an avid cap collector, I bought a black Adidas UNICEF cap.  The feeling of ‘this help is not enough’ washed over me, though.  A few weeks later, in the very same mall, UNICEF volunteers encouraged us to give a monthly donation. It was one of the easiest decisions I’ve ever made. 

Deep down, we all have the desire to help others.  But there is a lingering fear, like in the case of the street children, that the money we dole out to them might end up in the wrong hands and not benefit them at all. This is where UNICEF comes in. By letting them manage our contributions, our donations benefit those who are truly in need. 

It is my personal wish that next time I go down the streets, I won’t see street children anymore. By giving to UNICEF, we are one step closer to this goal.


 Cathy Villarante, 59

I'm a grandma of five and turning sixty in eight months.  I feel so blessed. Now it's time to give back and share my countless blessings to the less privileged and the less fortunate children.  My monthly contribution is nothing to brag about, and so I never told anybody in my family that I signed up in 2009 for UNICEF's Champion for Children.  And yet I received last January 2010 a Certificate of Appreciation from UNICEF which I now proudly hang in a corner of my bedroom.  I wish and pray I could give more and deserve being labelled a Champion for Children.


  Victor Angelo R. Colina, 37 (with family)

"A dream come true!" was all I told my wife after signing up to be a UNICEF Champion.  I had known of UNICEF since my elementary years, when it was helping malnourished children, especially in Africa. But I only became part of it after UNICEF’s last day of campaign for donors at SM Mall, Naga City.  I never thought it can be that possible, that simple, that accessible. I am proud to say I made a difference by helping the children in my own simple way!


  Jenny Roble, 35

I joined UNICEF Champion for Children because I am so blessed in my life right now.  I want to give back to less fortunate children. I know how they feel because I was once like them. To get a college degree was my only motivation for a better life. There are kids who are willing to change their future, and I will continue helping them to the best I can. Poverty is not a hindrance.


  Gae Silpedes-Piamonte, 31 (with husband Noel and son Miguel)

When the opportunity to be part of UNICEF's family of donors came, I immediately grabbed it. It felt natural after seeing Mom support UNICEF over the years. I still remember the beautiful UNICEF Christmas cards she regularly received. I always admired her big heart. She always managed to give, even when as a housewife, she had no personal income.  Now that I’m a mother myself, it feels good to help other kids get a better chance in life.


  Maricris C. Vines

I was celebrating my birthday at SM Sta. Rosa when I saw the UNICEF booth.  After listening to the UNICEF volunteer, I decided to donate and make my contributions a "birthday gift" for myself. I don't usually give myself a gift.
After receiving the certificate of appreciation and reading Alvin's story, I was touched and became more inspired to be a Champion for Children. This is the best Christmas gift I have received in years. Thanks UNICEF! God bless!

  Jules Lague, 26

I am proud to be one of UNICEF’s Champions for Children. Sharing is caring and caring to these children is worth living. Seeing unfortunate children really breaks my heart and knowing your drive to care and support them is really inspiring. I am inspired to be one of your Champions.


  Honeylou abauatan, 28

My husband and I decided to donate to UNICEF Philippines’ Champions for Children program because we wanted to give children a fair chance to survive and have healthy lives. By giving them the chance to continue to exist, they can then enjoy other life opportunities like education

We have a son too and we feel for those who have children that are sick and malnourished but can’t get the proper medical help due to financial reasons. If we can have a fancy meal worth more than the donation of Php20/day or Php600/month, contributing to children’s LIVES is a far more worthy endeavor.


  Annalyn Paloma, 26

As the old adage goes, “Ang kabataan ang pag-asa ng bayan” (The youth are the hope of the country).   But how can this come into fruition if these children aren’t equipped to be our hope yet because they themselves need help today? So allow me to revamp that adage just a little bit to say “Tayo ang pag-asa ng kabataan ngayon upang sila’y makapagbigay ng pag-asa sa kinabukasan.” (We are the hope of the youth today so that they in turn can give hope for the future.)

This idea fires me up to be a Champion for Children because I trust that what we do today will have a substantial influence in the future. Think about it: you’re a hero of the future! Isn’t that great? Also, it’s hard to be nonchalant about these children’s situation when you know you could do something to help, even in your own little way – such as donating.


 Kaye Plata, 33

No child should suffer simply because, well, a child is just a child. And so after reading the letter I got from UNICEF, I decided to do my part. As I faxed the donation form, I prayed to God to help me sustain my small monthly contribution.  Because I have kids and I know how it is to be a mother who can’t bear the sight of her children suffering from even something as small as a common cold or a cough. Because I am a mother who loves her kids so much. And because I am a mother who wants the best for all the children in the world.

After all, children are supposed to be pampered, loved, cared for.  While they’re still young, they should be allowed time to play and enjoy what life has to offer.


 Bianca Gonzalez, 27

Ever since I was young, I’ve always wanted to be a part of UNICEF.  I read about and see the work that they do and I’ve always wanted to help in my own little way.  Through Champions for Children, we can all be a part of UNICEF’s efforts to better the lives of children around the world! What’s amazing is how accessible it is. To be able to “help”, sometimes you think you’d have to do something so grand or spend so much to be able to make a difference. But with Champions for Children, all you have to do is commit a little of your savings each month. Not at all major, not at all impossible!

It means a lot to me, knowing that with the savings I set aside, I can share the blessings given to me, to kids in need. Kids! Who wouldn’t want to make the world a better place for them? Knowing that people come together to be able to save this child from sickness, or help send this child to school, or help educate this kid’s community about health and sanitation—it means so much. Knowing that we can help make their future better makes you want to help even more. :)



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