Christmas and New Year celebrations are occasions we usually look forward to being with our families and friends. But Ryan Del Barrio, 42, Operation Blessing’s (OB) volunteer, heed the call to travel hundreds of miles away from home to gift his time and skills to Boholanos who lacked supplies of clean water in the wake of Typhoon Odette.
On December 21, Ryan had to travel three days from Metro Manila to Cebu aboard the Philippine Navy vessel with the water filtration machine and generator. He spent Christmas eve with the navy.
Their team travelled another 3 hours to Tagbilaran, Bohol where he stayed and served potable water to thousands of families. He then welcomed 2022 in Tagbilaran.
“On New Year’s eve, I was alone. I felt sad because I was away from my family, but I told God, I will do my best to serve Him while I’m still here in Bohol. Although it’s sad because I was alone, I am also happy for the opportunity to help others,” he shared.
His passion to serve our kababayans grew when he saw the devastation brought by the typhoon. Houses, schools, churches, and crops were severely damaged, but Ryan was amazed of the resiliency he saw in our Boholano kababayans.
“Even though they experienced this, I did not see them giving up. Their eyes are fixed on their recovery,” he added.
Ryan started volunteering for OB in 2009 during the relief efforts for Typhoon Ondoy in Metro Manila. Since then, he continued joining the organization’s relief efforts to disaster-affected areas.
“If you got something you can use to bless others, share it with them and make them feel God’s love through you… In my case, as long as I have strength to serve, I will use it to go and reach out to the needy,” says Ryan.
Like Ryan, you, too can share your time and skills to help our kababayans! Volunteer today by visiting www.operationblessing.ph/volunteer. For inquiries, contact 09399215543 or 09189067753.