Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Day 9: Home Sweet Home

Day 9, mixed feelings. It was time for us to go home.
Leaving YMCA Guest House

 Part of us want to go back to Singapore as we start to miss home and the comforts we have in Singapore. Meanwhile part of us can't bear to leave Philippines and the Philippines volunteers.
Last Photo with Philippines Volunteer

Photo with Sir Jimmy
 However, all good things have to come an end. After biding good bye at the YMCA guesthouse and lunch, we headed to Clark Airport for home. After about 3 hours of plane ride, finally home sweet home. 
Home Sweet Home
This does not mark the end of our journey though. All the memories created and lessons learnt for the past 9 days will always been kept in our heart.
Next up- Do look out for more photos on Facebook

-Jia Min
Special photo credits to Ellias

Monday, July 11, 2016

Day 8: 100 Islands to Rest & Relax at~

Viewer's Discretion: The following images may leave you in awe due to the picturesque sceneries.

Our very first stop before we visit 3 out of the famous 100 Islands was to the Pangasinan Provincial Capitol in Lingayen, Pangasinan. 
Kudos to our filipino volunteer (Mel) and vice-chairperson (Eelin) for respectively sharing and interpreting the brief history to all of us! 
In honor and recognition of the heroes of World War II, a memorial park was established. It features a number of photographs, maps and other memorabilias from Douglas McArthur’s historic landing in the Lingayen Gulf.
Air team leaving our footprints at the Veterans Memorial Park~
A mandatory group photo!
With a tight schedule to follow (of course we wanted to visit as many islands as we can out of over one hundred islands!), we finally got back on our bus!
Our eyes had a feast,
With our hearts at peace.
Intrigued by beautiful scenes,
In this place called The Philippines.
Everyone getting ready before boarding. Sunblock, CHECKED.
... Quezon Island!
Such a sweet couple!
Personal achievement unlocked: I did my very first zip-line in Philippines, in the heavy rain and thunder. I did it alongside Sadrina, Edward, Yi Ning and Eben! It was a once in a lifetime experience to zip-line amidst the heavy downpour!! (It cost only ~3SGD for the zip-line. So affordable, it's a MUST-DO!! And nope, this is not a sponsored post haha)

After having fun at the zip-line, we headed back to the shelters to satisfy our rumbling tummies; well-cooked BBQ food prepared by our lovely filipino volunteers! No pictures from that... I guess we were all in a hurry to savour the good food! NOMS. 

We had a little more free and easy time at the Quezo Island, and that was when a few other COR members went to zip-line in all bright and sunny weather! 
En Route to our next Island!
Ft. Jerven!
Here we are, at Cuenco cave- Jetty jumping!
Just look at Ellias' happy face. I did a jump too, and my face was probably showing more fear than happiness. After all, I can't swim!! :/ It was also my very first jetty jump!! HURRAY. Yet another achievement unlocked for me. This trip was full of things for me to look forward to. I believe the same goes for all the other COR members. I have seen so many of them jumping continuously; simply because they enjoyed it so much! 
Those with wet hair were clearly those who jumped! No regrets!! :) 
PS: While we were busy taking selfies, other members were still enjoying their "jumps" at the back... 

Moving on to our very third island; Governor's Island!
123 steps to a bird's eye view of other islands!
Ft. Zyrus. Great model! :D
Check out the aerial view of the enthralling islets in the background.
FIRE team!
Creating wonderful memories together!
It is evident that Jia Yi enjoyed the R&R day!
Arrived back at the jetty, what a complicating love story! So many gooseberries. :P
Making sure we use the 4 hours travelling time back to YMCA Guest House wisely. Sleep is always a good option! :)
After washing up and having dinner, it was time for us to show our appreciation towards our filipino volunteers who had been such great help to us. During the entire trip, they helped to orientate, translate, aid us in our daily cooking, teaching, construction activities, etc... Too many to list! One thing for sure is that we are all grateful and deeply touched by their keen attitude towards learning sign language. It was a key to unlock the barriers that could have hindered the interaction with our Deaf participants. 

Start of the Appreciation Night!
Check out (from left) Mel, Zyrus, Pamela and Nicole dancing in action!
The Philippines' very own Charlie's Angels!<3

Some warm-ups to get everybody hyped up~
1st act of the night: Song Signing 
You'll be in my heart (Phil Collins)
2nd act of the night: Slapstick Comedy 
Ft. Edward, Zhen Siang, Yin King
3rd act of the night: Glowstick Dance
Bar Bar Bar (Crayon Pop)

Our meaningful mini-reflection session drove some of us into tears. It tugged at our heartstrings. We also received a magnet souvenir from the filipino volunteers! :) 

Before the mini-reflection session, representatives shared their heartfelt thoughts on the trip. Below are pictures of some representatives, with Sadrina helping with the translation.  

Dimple :)
Lay Hong!
Nicole :) Our youngest volunteer with us!
We wrapped up the whole day with a simple exchange of appreciation gifts...
Ft. Sir Marvin!
All good things come to an end. But memories and friendship are ever-lasting!

Till then!
- Jaime