Written by Kwinee Villanueva, volunteer writer; Photographs by Ivan Llaneta, volunteer photographer

While sitting at the bleachers and waiting for his turn to be accommodated, Richard is deeply contemplating if he is going to bring his ill parents to the medical mission. It is evident in his worrisome face his desire to, but the harder question for him is, how?

His mother, Estela, 65, was not able to walk after suffering from a mild stroke June last year, 2016, while his father Roberto, also 65, a former truck driver, lost his vision due to diabetes between 2008 and 2009. But with God’s provision, Richard was able to bring his parents to the covered court using the very old wheelchair he borrowed from his aunt.

Nanay Estela giggles when her 37-year-old son says “hep hep, hooray!” No one can really tell what the cheerful woman has gone through six months ago. Richard used to bring her to their health center but he also needs to work as a truck porter and sustain his parents and his own family. As a mother, Nanay Estela fully understands his son’s situation. She wanted to help her son, and by helping she meant not going to the health center anymore.

Fortunately, Operation Blessing volunteers were able to provide her medical advice, medication, as well as practical measures and exercises to improve her condition and to lower the risk of having stroke again.

Richard’s father, Tatay Roberto, was also given proper guidance on taking his medications. It was learned that the old man was taking medications wrong, which resulted to his worsening health condition: kidney problem, prostate enlargement, and sight and skin problems. Though the medicines prescribed from previous consultations were for maintenance purposes but they did not undergo follow ups and just bought the medicine from pharmacies.

Now, it’s Richard’s turn to receive Operation Blessing’s dental service. He was very grateful that he was able to grab this opportunity. So he and his sister got their dental pearls checked after taking care of their parents.

It was only with Operation Blessing in partnership with JAC Liner, that he was able to attend to the medical and dental needs of his family. He felt blessed that God removed potential “road blocks” from attending this mission, as he believed it was God’s plan that brought him to that covered court.

Because of your help, we are able to reach people in need like the family of Richard. This 2017, make it your new year’s resolution to be an unexpected blessing to others. Do something different this year. Together, let’s #InspireChange and #TogetherWeTransform.