By Flora Mae Tatoy

Before I go to sleep, I prepare my to-do list for the next day’s work. This is one of my habits I developed so I can check whether or not I became productive that day and so I can motivate myself to do more.

Every day, at 6 o’clock in the morning, I leave my house and travel to my work. I know this routine, more or less, is followed by ordinary folks. They would wake up early in the morning to prepare their breakfast and get ready to work.

Children at the Manila North Cemetery busy accomplishing their art works.

But there are people who are oblivious to many of us who go about their lives differently. They are the street families. They sleep on streets with no mats under their bodies nor pillows under their heads. They are invariably exposed to the elements.

Instinctively, I would start to pray, crying silently. I would ask God to bless these street families and to give them protection. “Lord, how can I help? Please, use me as an instrument to bless them,” I prayed.

I have been working for Kapatiran-Kaunlaran Foundation Inc. or KKFI for almost a month. I was assigned to handle Supervised Neighborhood Play or SNP in Manila North Cemetery. I’ve never been there before. When I saw it for the first time, it made me realize that this opportunity is God’s answer to my prayer.

When I began to teach my first class, I saw bare-footed children wearing dirty clothes coming to study with empty stomachs. Despite that, it was obvious they willing to learn and happy to have the opportunity to do so. They always had smiles on their faces. These motivated me to do my work with love and passion.


I am a social worker by profession and not a teacher of children. I barely know some children’s songs and my teaching skills are not that impressive. I’m not a superb physical specimen of health, meaning, I easily get sick, which sometimes affects my performance.

But I don’t have the heart to disappoint my students. So I try hard to get accustomed to my new job, although it is way out of my comfort zone. I also have begun to teach myself more children’s songs (with action to boot). I constantly solicit advices from friends who teach professionally for tips and techniques on how to be a better and more effective mentor to children.


Handling the Supervised Neighbourhood Play or SNP is tough, I must confess, but still I am thankful to God for the trials and challenges. They taught me a lot.

I’m so blessed, happy and excited to do more for these children.  I give thanks to the Lord for everything because God is using me as an instrument in educating the children in Manila North Cemetery.

Indeed! God is good!


“Giving thanks always for all things to God the father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Ephesians 5:20



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