A Grandmother’s Commitment Despite the Challenges

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Written By Neyzielle Ronnicque Cadiz, Writer, Operation Blessing Philippines

MIAG-AO, ILOILO – At a young age, Filomena Esmediana, learned how to make decisions and live independently with her sister. Her mother had to tend to her “original” family. Because of that, Filomena only finished elementary education. Despite the life she has lived, a sweet smile remains on her face. Now 77 years old, Lola Mena and her sister, who both grew old unmarried, live on a small farm in Barangay Tigmabaro, Miag-ao, Iloilo, where they grow a few rootcrops and fruit-bearing trees.

With the little money she earns from selling some of her rootcrops, Lola Mena sends her distant grandson Matthew to school. Matthew was left in her care after his parents separated and his mother sought greener pastures in Singapore — where she eventually found another man. According to Lola Mena, Matthew’s mother still sends him money, but not regularly. Committed to send her grandson to school, Lola Mena bears all the expenses from her earnings selling her rootcrops. Food is not always abundant in their household, so she sometimes asks money from her nieces to be able to survive a day.

Lola Mena said she would do everything to send her grandson to college — who is now in Grade 8 — but she is not getting any younger. She worries about the future and how she would be able to continually support him.

In fact, she has cause for concern. On her second time to seek the help of medical doctors with Operation Blessing’s medical, dental, and surgical mission last July 14, she was given treatment for her upper upper respiratory tract infection, and benefited from the free vitamins and other medicines from OB.
No longer capable of working her heart out to provide everything Matthew needs, she asks for any help that could assure her that everything she has done for Matthew would not go to waste.

The Back-to-School program can be the answer to her prayers. With your help, we can secure what Lola Mena has long been taking good care of.

Partner with us today, so we could help the elderly help their young loved ones reach their goals and aspirations.
Call us at these numbers: 477-7806/ 0920-4975558/ 0922-8036922/ 0917-5812603 to know more ways on how you can help.

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