Monthly Archives: February 2014

David Beckham

David Beckham Visits Tacloban

Recently, on February 13th, David Beckham took a trip to Tacloban, one of the hardest-hit areas of the country. Sporting a UNICEF t-shirt, he greeted hundreds of survivors who rushed out of tents to greet the retired soccer star.

Now, this isn’t the first time he’s visited the Philippines. During his first visit three years ago, he and his wife Victoria visited a children’s shelter, and donated clothing as a fundraiser for typhoon victims.

Though the typhoon that devastated lives struck in November of last year, millions of people remain displaced. They lost their homes and livelihoods in the deadliest typhoon to ever hit the Philippines, and more than 6,200 people are reported to have been killed.

“I was humbled to visit Tacloban and see how people are still so full of spirit despite the devastation they have suffered,” he said, after visiting with children in a makeshift-classroom. Beckham spent time with various families in Tacloban, interacting with the children, and even helping them make Valentine’s Day cards for loved ones.

“I want to show people around the world how their generous donations have had an enormous impact on children and their families and how thankful people here are for their kindness.”

~Marci

Michael Christian Martinez Represents Filipinos in the Winter Olympics

Filipinos across the world are swelling in pride over 17-year-old Michael Christian Martinez, who scored a 64.81 in figure skating in the Sochi Winter Olympics. Not only is he the first Filipino to qualify, but also the first Southeast-Asian.

However, this athlete isn’t without struggles of his own. The Philippines has only two skating rinks in all of it’s thousands of islands. Combined with a childhood of living with asthma, his determination is remarkable.

“I literally grew up in the hospital as I was very sick. I couldn’t take up any sport. I tried outdoor sports when I was younger, but I easily got asthma attacks so I stopped.”

His mother was extremely supportive of her son’s dream, doing everything in her power to fund a winter sport in the tropic climate. Martinez has been skating since he was only eight years old, idolizing the success of boxing icon Manny Pacquiao. In 2010, he began training in the United States, overcoming both physical and financial challenges. Additionally, the family farm was hit hard by the typhoon.

Surmounting all obstacles, Martinez has qualified for the finals, which are to take place on Friday. He’ll be the third to compete, battling 24 others for a medal. ~Marci