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The Walk to Fight Poverty

ANCOP International Bermuda hosted a kick off gathering last Saturday, May 9th at the St Theresa hall to officially open its 3rd annual fundraising event, the 2009 ANCOP-GK Walk.

ANCOP is an acronym for ANswering the Cry Of the Poor. ANCOP International Bermuda is a registered non-profit charitable organization, committed to alleviating poverty in poor countries through a holistic community development program called GK or “Gawad Kalinga” -translated to English “Gawad Kalinga” means “to give care”. The GK program exists to present a viable alternative solution to the blatant poverty that is an unfortunate reality in many countries around the world. It offers a proven sustainable and holistic solution that includes the provision of shelter, education, livelihood, health and value formation. GK’s approach is comprehensive, integrated and sustainable. It has been cited by no less than the United Nations officials as a model for poverty alleviation.

Since its inception in 2006 herein Bermuda, ANCOP International Bermuda had organized two other fund raising projects – the Paraiso (Paradise) movie showing in 2007 and the Heal the World concert in 2008. Both had been successful in raising funds to support the projects of ANCOP-GK; Restoring homes and rebuilding hope, one community at a time.

This year’s project, the 2009 ANCOP-GK Walk, which will be held on Aug 23rd simultaneously with other GK Walks organized by ANCOP Chapters around Canada and the US, aims to raise funds globally through walkers’ registration fees, pledges and sponsorships. Proceeds of the event will be used to build more homes in GK villages in poor communities worldwide as well as support local charity work. This event which will be witnessed by thousands in three countries and covered by major news organization is the Charity’s way of reaching out to people around the world and telling them how one small step can go far in helping the needy --their way of walking to fight poverty, so to speak.

At the kick off event last Saturday, ANCOP officers, Couples for Christ - Bermuda members, friends, prospective GK sponsors and walk registrants, flocked the venue. They were entertained by a classical guitar performance by Mr. Josiah Esplanada and a song number by Ms. Marife Bacasno, together with Youth For Christ members Allonah dela Cruz, Carmela Robinson and Vina Grace Parayaoan. The occasion was also graced by the presence of Mr. Kim Swan, UBP Opposition leader; Mr. Jamahl Simmons, Chief of Staff to the Premier on behalf of Minister Dale Butler and Mr. Calvin Steede, President of the Swans Running Club who each gave inspirational speeches to reinforce the Charity’s cause and to bring more encouragement to those present to support the 2009 ANCOP-GK Walk, ANCOP as a charity, and the less fortunate, in general.

Mr. Swan stated in his speech that, “There’s nothing better than being able to give up yourself. This Bermuda Village (referencing the Bermuda Village built from ANCOP proceeds) that I am seeing here where it provides some bigger homes for a family is very important because every family needs a place to call home. I was very moved and touched to learn that your organization also helps here in Bermuda as well. I salute you and applaud you for that because around the world we have poverty and in Bermuda we have persons that are finding very difficult to make ends meet.”, He added further  that he is prepared to support ANCOP’s cause, and will in fact join the 2009 GK Walk in August.

Mr. Simmons expressed gratitude to the ANCOP Bermuda organization in his remarks, saying: “I would like to extend thanks and congratulations on behalf of the Government and the people of Bermuda for all of the work that you do. It is said that to whom much is given, much is expected and the fight to eliminate poverty both here and abroad is a responsibility for all of us.”

In the year end update provided by Ms Evelou Mosley, ANCOP International Bermuda President, she highlighted that in the GK Bermuda Village that was started in 2006, a total of 30 houses have now been completed, with 10 more under construction. Ms. Severina Saliba, ANCOP International Bermuda Vice President also added that ANCOP worldwide projects have now expanded to as far as Africa and to other Asian countries like Bangladesh, Cambodia, and Indonesia. ANCOP International Bermuda has also been assisting in education of over 40 children under child sponsorship program of just a dollar a day per child.

Through the 2009 GK Walk, ANCOP hopes to raise enough funds to build more houses, send more children to school and create more livelihood for poor communities in third world countries and to assist struggling families within Bermuda.

Mr. Steede formally ended the evening with a toast, encouraging all the guests to ”go out there, spread the news, get people involved! If End to End can get 2500 people, you can get it! But it all just takes work and dedication and that’s what Bermudian people are giving.”

ANCOP is inviting everyone to join them on Aug 23rd, 2009 at 9 ‘o clock in the morning at the Botanical Gardens, Berry Hill Rd. in taking part in this charitable event. This 5K walk will take the Scenic route of Harbour Road, Lovers’ Lane, South Road all the way to Tee Street and back to Berry Hill Road.

To register for the GK Walk 2009 please go online at www.raceday.bm or visit Sportseller at Washington Mall, Kit N’ Caboodle at Bermudiana Arcade, Eve Cycles Ltd. at Middle Rd,
Paget or All About Eve Boutique at York St., St. George’s.  

For further information about GK Walk 2009 , ANCOP International Bermuda and how you can help  please  call Evelou Mosley at (441) 799 6659 or Mot Saliba at (441) 332-1221 or  email us at ancopbermuda@logic.bm or fax (441) 236 5464 or visit our website at www.ancopbermuda.com

Eleanor Secreto and ANCOP Wiriters

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