Spotted in Manila, 2014

Monday, April 14, 2014

Tacos for a Cause

A friend recently sent me a link to one of the internet's latest viral videos called "Happy - Philippines After Typhoon Haiyan". The charming video shows smiling Filipinos of all ages showing off their best dance moves in front of Tacloban ruins and damaged boats from November's Typhoon. I was so uplifted and humbled by the undying Filipino spirit that was captured so well. It also reminded me of the incredible destruction from the storm and that there are so many Filipino families homeless and hungry from the effects of Haiyan.

Check out the video here.

Realizing that we ourselves never got around to donating to disaster relief in the Philippines, my boyfriend Brian and I decided to host a taco party in New York City. The "Taco Blast" tradition is one that has been in his family for generations and we love sharing this tradition with our friends here. This Taco Blast was the 9th one that Brian has hosted and in honor of it being our birthdays, we called this party "TB 9: Tacos of a Cause". Since the Philippines is such a special place for us since our outreach work there in 2012, we thought that making the already popular Taco Blast a benefit night for the Philippines would be the best way we could celebrate our special days.

We made over 100 tacos for our 20 guests and asked that everyone contribute $5 to Typhoon Haiyan relief. We will be sending this to JDR Mission Partners, a Tacloban disaster relief organization founded by our friend Jun. This reliable organization gives 100% of donations to needy families by providing them with a 100-pound bag of rice. This goes a long way--feeding a family for at least 1 month.

I was so touched by our friends kindness and compassion during our taco night. Collectively, we raised $100, which will feed 2 families through JDR Mission Partners. I was even more moved by our friends' kind words in the form of cards which we set out with markers, inviting guests to write a message of love to someone in the Philippines. I will deliver these messages in August when I visit the Philippines. Thank you, friends for such a successful night in honor of the millions of Filipinos still impacted by Typhoon Haiyan. Mahal kita <3

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