“However, nothing could prepare us for the amazing experience we were about to embark on”
Was what Faye had to say at departure before leaving for Manila in May this year.
She and other leaders and youth were off to the Ticket to Life Joint Camp in Manila, Philippines. Ticket to Life (TTL) is amazing program in Philippines that has Scouts from all across the Asia Pacific Region involved, helping street kids of Manila become connected with other youth through Scouting. The program empowers these kids to become part of their local community and create a brighter future for themselves.
The trip this year in particular was about bringing over supplies to the school that they attend and also taking them on a camp into the hills outside Manila. The camp was a great opportunity for the two groups of Scouts to become one and they did just that with Faye expressing it as “Laughter, learning, friendship, and just very good scouting took place during the next five days”. The group spend their days strawberry picking, going on a ‘Amazing Race’ through the local, Baguio City. Climbing up and down stairs, sharing games, skits and exploring the city together. Before everyone knew the camp was over. But it left lasting impressions on everyone.
Not only was it great fun, they learnt so much from their exchange with the Filipino Scouts. Teaching all of them to respect each others different customs and the Australian Scouts being appreciative of the life they get to live in Australia. With Jane noticing the difference “Walking around the streets and seeing the poverty, families with children living and sleeping on the streets was very hard to take in and reminds us of how lucky we are to live where we do. But still no matter how sad the situation is these people are always smiling, waving hello, we have so much to learn from these people.”
This was not a once off trip, with further ongoing fundraising efforts continuing to pay so the Filipino kids can continue their education. Also including another massive trip that is occurring early next year with 30 of the Filipino youth (on their first overseas trip) coming from Manila to Perth. To join in on camp, getting involved in games and have further great cultural exchanges. The TTL team are always happy for more people to get involved to help support the project, which is having a huge impact on the lives of these kids.
And this is how some of the participants reflected on their trip:
“How do you truly put into words the amazing experiences that we have all shared together with these wonderful people. Their stories, songs, laughter, love of life will stay with me forever.”
“I made so many new friends and I have so many memories to share with my family and friends back home. It was a great experience and I hope I get to see most of them next year.”
Check out the video of TTL for more information: