Wekelijkse huisbezoeken tijdens lockdown

Het nieuwe kalenderjaar brengt vooralsnog weinig bewegingsruimte voor de Pasuk scholieren. Nog steeds moeten kinderen jonger dan 15 jaar verplicht thuisblijven. Tijdens deze voortdurende lockdown in Cebu City leggen we trouw onze wekelijkse huisbezoeken af om de Pasuk kinderen te bemoedigen en met hen te bidden. Ze zijn bijzonder dankbaar voor deze zorg en aandacht. Deze week ontvingen de kinderen hun nieuwe Pasuk glow-in-the-dark polsbandje, en een nieuwe balpen met de tekst uit Joh. 8:12: “I am the light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life”.

Lees verder onder de foto’s.

Tweede golf
Cebu City heeft op dit moment helaas te maken met een tweede golf coronabesmettingen. Daarom worden op diverse plaatsen in de stad de checkpoints weer opgezet. De quarantaineregels zijn nog steeds van kracht, hoewel onlangs versoepeld met als doel om de economie iets te helpen. Echter, jongeren onder de 15 en ouderen boven de 65 jaar mogen nog steeds het huis niet uit. De economie van het eiland wordt keihard geraakt, veel bedrijven zijn gesloten en de prijzen van levensmiddelen stijgen.

Wekelijkse huisbezoeken
Voor de meeste Pasuk gezinnen is het een erg zware tijd. Het inkomen van veel gezinnen staat onder druk. Ouders moeten hun aandacht verdelen over de kinderen en hun eigen werk. De kinderen missen de schoolstructuur en hun docent, en hebben moeite met de huiswerkopdrachten. Middels onze wekelijkse huisbezoeken leven we mee met de gezinnen en houden we vinger aan de pols. Ondertussen zijn we bezig met voorbereidingen om een professioneel huiswerkbegeleidingsprogramma (‘Homework Support Program’) op te zetten. Met name voor het middelbaar onderwijs is dit van groot belang. Om deze tieners de juiste hulp en aandacht te bieden hopen we op korte termijn een gediplomeerde docent aan te stellen.

Dank en gebed
Mogen we u vragen te blijven bidden voor de Pasuk kinderen en ons team? Dat God hen zal beschermen en ondersteunen in deze uitdagende tijd. Dat de thuisquarantaine voor de kinderen zal worden opgeheven en dat we de kinderen weer mogen ontvangen op het Pasuk project. Hartelijk bedankt voor uw ondersteuning, meeleven en gebed!

Brief van projectdirecteur
Lees hieronder de update van Pasuk projectdirecteur Russel Villafuerte:

Russel Villafuerte
Russel Villafuerte, Pasuk project director

Cebu City, February 8, 2021

Dearest sponsors and friends of PASUK Foundation,

We would like to greet all of you! Last year 2020 was a hard year for all of us. Who could have imagined that a virus would infect and affect almost the entire world and caused so much misery in our lives. Together, let us face this year 2021 with hope that this pandemic will soon be over. Let us choose to focus our eyes on the positive changes that this pandemic has given us. Like the ample time we have with our love ones. Due to the lock downs and restrictions of not going out from our homes, we as a family have been together and bond like never before.

As what is happening right now in your country, we are also experiencing another wave of Covid19 infections. The Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) will reactivate the barangay control points in 40 villages to limit the movement of the residents now that Covid19 cases are on the rise anew, the police chief here said last Thursday. Col. Josefino Ligan, CCPO chief, said in a press briefing they will present to the Emergency Operations Center the deployment plan of more or less 100 policemen who will man the barangay control points. “They will be assisted by the barangay peace and security officers (BPSO) in apprehending violators of our quarantine measures,” Ligan said in Cebuano. He said those who are not bringing quarantine passes and disregarding protocols such as wearing of face masks while outside of their homes will be arrested.

The government eases age-based restrictions after the trade department says it would help malls and restaurants recover. The Duterte administration's pandemic task force is allowing kids 10 years and older, and elderly people 65 and younger, to step outside their homes starting on February 1. The relaxed age-based restrictions mean that only children below 10 years old and the elderly who are older than 65 are required to stay at home at all times, except for essential activities like exercise and medical care.

As of Wednesday, January 6, foreigners traveling from a long list of countries are being denied entry into the Philippines. This travel ban again is a big blow to our Philippine economy. We are already suffering for a long time the crippling effect of this travel restrictions. Many have lost their jobs and close their businesses. Prices of almost all the basic commodities (like rice, meat, fish, vegetables, spices etc.) are becoming expensive. The ones that suffer very badly are the poor with very low income. Being in poverty, our dear PASUK families are directly affected by this situation.

Every time we visit them in their homes, we are encouraged to see our scholars with their families smiling. Thinking of their hard situations, we are amazed to see how they managed to have those beautiful smiles in their faces. During the time of having a conversation in each of the PASUK family we visit, we always hear from them their thanks and gratefulness to what we are doing to them. They really appreciate that we regularly visit them, talk and hear their sentiments, and pray for them. I think that's one of the reasons why they are always smiling every time they see us coming to visit them. They know in their hearts that we care and love them. In every home visitation, we can't really help to always become emotional. As they share their day to day struggles, our hearts felt heavy and sad. Praise God, as we prayed with them and cast all their cares to the Lord, the heaviness in our hearts are replaced with God's peace and comfort. Knowing and believing that God is our Provider.

The number one prayer concern the children and parents voice out is that God will provide food in their table. Our government have stopped already the giving of rice to the needy due to the lack of funds. Our church in partnership with PASUK Foundation have stopped also in distributing weekly food packs since our City was put under MGCQ, because the parents could go back to work. Right now, many of our PASUK families are on the mode of survival.

The second common prayer request is wisdom in answering their school modules. The parents of our scholars are really having difficulties because they are the ones that closely helping their children in answering their modules. That's why the idea of Homework School Program (HSP) comes up. As a team, we are still preparing ourselves for this new activity.

Again and again, we want to let all of you know that we are deeply touched by your kindness and generosity. The money that you have given and donated to PASUK Foundation have helped each of our PASUK scholar in their education, and in having that hope that God will provide them a bright future.

“One who is gracious to a poor person lends to the Lord, and He will repay him for his good deed.”
Proverbs 19:17 NASB


To God be all the glory!

Respectfully yours,

Pastor Russel Villafuerte
Senior Pastor, Cebu Bible Church
Pasuk Project Director, Cebu, Philippines