Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Day Trip to Hulugan Falls

It's one of those hurriedly-arranged out-of-town trips which I am truly glad I decided to join.

The muddy, slippery trek was well worth it. The majestic falls, at 70 ft, is indeed awe-inspiring.


What to expect:
1. Prepare to trek for at least 45 minutes. If the trail is muddy due to rains, you'd trek for more than one hour. It will be longer if there's a lot of visitors since there'll be a queue going to the waterfalls.
2. The trail is a combination of cemented road, dirt road, and steep, rocky slopes.
3. Wear proper trekking footwear. I prefer sandals since it will give you a good foothold, especially if the trail is muddy. Don't wear ordinary thong slippers, you'd end up walking barefoot. Don't wear your favorite sneakers. You'll regret it, I tell you. The mud is unforgiving.
4. Grab a walking stick. Ask your guide to provide one. You will definitely need it, especially if the trail is muddy.
5. Bring as little as possible during the trek. You'll need both of your hands to negotiate the steep and muddy terrain. Ask your guide to safekeep your belongings.
6. You may bring food/snacks to the waterfalls area. Just make sure you maintain the cleanliness of the place.
7. Waterproof your gadgets! They will get wet, especially if you go near the waterfalls.
8. There are a lot of food stalls at the jump off area. Don't fret if you didn't have time to prepare or buy food.
9. There are shower stalls and comfort rooms at the jump off point. They charge P15.00 for use of shower. P5.00 for answering the call of nature.
9. Registration fee is P15.00 per head. There is no fixed rate yet for the guide fee. We paid our guide P900 since we made him carry all our things and made one of our friends use his pink boots. There were 7 of us in the group.
10. Since the place is already a popular tourist destination, expect a lot of people during weekends and holidays.



How to go to Hulugan Falls via commute:
1. From Cubao or Buendia, take a bus bound to Sta. Cruz, Laguna. (From Buendia, fare is P140.00.) Tell the conductor to drop you off at the terminal for Lucban-bound jeepneys. The terminal is located at Pagsawitan.
2. Ride a jeepney going to San Salvador.  You may also ride Lucban-bound jeepneys since they pass by San Salvador. You may opt to topload if you feel like being more adventurous. Fare is P30.00
3. Ride a tricycle to the Hulugan Falls registration area. Fare is P10.00 each
If you opt to bring a vehicle, you may park it near the registration area.

Side trips:
1. You may trek further to see Aliw Falls if you have time. It's another 45 minutes to 1 hour of trekking. You may opt to camp out in the area.
2. You may also drop by Magdapio Falls in Cavinti (more popularly known as Pagsanjan Falls).

Sending you happy thoughts...

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Project Lakbay Aral: Mind Museum Tour Courtesy of Children's Hour

Thank you, Children's Hour, for letting fifty (50) underprivileged kids from the VIDES Philippines Volunteers Foundation, Inc take the fun and interactive way of science learning and discovery at the Mind Museum!
We are also grateful to the Mind Museum for extending the sponsorship grant to the kids of VIDES Philippines and Project Lakbay Aral.
We also give our heartfelt thanks to our the donors who provided the food (breakfast, lunch, and snacks), books, school supplies, health kits, and transportation requirements of the kids. The services rendered by our volunteers are also very much appreciated!

Sending you happy thoughts...

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Project Lakbay Aral Returns to the Mind Museum

We are all set for Project Lakbay Aral's Mind Museum Tour this Wednesday, 18 November 2015! We are taking 50 underprivileged kids to the world-class interactive science museum in Taguig!
We'd like to thank our generous sponsors and partners, Children's Hour and The Mind Museum, for choosing VIDES Philippines and Project Lakbay Aral to be among the selected recipients of a sponsorship grant.
Our thanks and appreciation also go to our benefactors who have supported us since 2012! A truckload of thanks for sponsoring the school supplies, nutrition packs, hygiene kits, transportation, and breakfast for the kids and volunteers. We couldn't thank you enough!
Hugs to everyone!

Sending you happy thoughts...

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Help VIDES Philippines Build a Livelihood & Development Center for Women

Help VIDES Philippines build a livelihood and development center for underprivileged women in Cavite, Philippines.  The two-storey facility seeks to provide an avenue for women empowerment, especially in the field of economic independence and sustainability.  

The center, which will be built on a 107 square meter lot area, will house a bakery, a sewing room, and a small office which will cater to microcredit and other livelihood projects.    

The target beneficiaries of this livelihood and development center are the relocated informal settlers from Barangay 143 in Pasay City to Trece Martires in Cavite.   The more than 1,500 households are bereft with viable sources of income due to the remoteness  of the relocation site and the unavailability of job opportunities in the community.

How Can You Help?

1.  Buy a raffle ticket for only P200.00 each!  Each ticket entitles you to join the raffle where you can win any one of the following: 1st Prize - 4 days & 3 nights trip for 2 to Bangkok, Thailand (hotel and roundtrip flights via PAL);  2nd Prize - 3 days & 2 nights trip for 2 to Coron, Palawan;  3rd Prize- 3 days & 2 nights trip for 2 to Boracay.  Raffle date is on November 14, 2015 at Don Bosco School Manila, during the Eat & Meet Dinner for a Cause event.
2.  Donate funds.  All donors will be issued official receipts and acknowledgement letters.  (Please drop us a line at videspinoy@gmail.com to get the bank account details.)

3.  Naming rights are also offered for donors who will donate a substantial amount (Please send us an email at videspinoy@gmail.com for more information.)  

Where Will Your Donations Go?

All donations will go to the construction of the proposed two-storey VIDES Philippines Livelihood and Development Center for Women in Bella Vista, Brgy Santiago, General Trias, Cavite.  

Your contributions will enable us to help underprivileged women help themselves and their families by providing a venue where they can receive training on sewing, baking, marketing, and entrepreneurship. 

Other Ways You Can Help:

Help comes in many forms. If you are unable to make a financial contribution but still want to help us, please help us spread the word and share this campaign with your family and friends. 

You may send in your donations through Indiegogo.com, Paypal, or wire transfer.

Make the VIDES Livelihood and Development Center become a reality!  
Help build the facility.  Help empower women.  Help change lives.

Sending you happy thoughts...

Monday, May 18, 2015

Images of Bhaktapur, Nepal

Bhaktapur Durbar Square before the earthquake

My heart bleeds for Nepal. I weep even more for Bhaktapur, my favorite place in that lovely country.  

I enjoyed wandering around aimlessly in this medieval city. Its old world charm entralled and fascinated me. I got lost in its maze-like alleys and passageways a couple of times, but the locals were just too glad to point me to the right direction each time I asked for help.



Thanks to my dear friend Krishna, his lovely family, and awesome friends for making my days in Bhaktapur so much memorable. I've learned so much about the Nepali culture, particularly Newari traditions and beliefs, because of them.


It is quite noteworthy to mention that I met two old men from Bhaktapur who were so glad that our paths crossed. One is the patriarch of the Peacock Paper Factory and the other one is the father of my friend's friend. They both said they have made Filipino friends a long time ago and haven't seen someone who come from our country in years, decades even.

I bring home with me the smiles, hospitality, and kindness of the Newari people of Bhaktapur. I know that I shall be back. 



Sending you happy thoughts...

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