Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Thomas Kuo’s concern for the kids

A Friend of Tembari Children

THOMAS Kuo, one of our benefactors, became quite concerned about the Tembari kids when he learned that I was going away on Saturday for my yearly work leave.

“Who will pick up the fish?” Thom asked me in his email yesterday.

“The kids might run out of food during your absence … I can arrange some 20kgs (of frozen fish) from our new catch,” he said.

Thom, for all you know, is the general manager of High Energy Co Ltd, a fishing company and fish exporter based in Port Moresby.

Sometime early last month, he stumbled upon my blogs at where I wrote about the plight of the children under the care of the Tembari Children Center (TCC), a day-care center at ATS Oro Settlement, Seven-Mile, outside of Port Moresby.

In his first email to me to respond to my call for food assistance for the 78 orphans, neglected and abandoned children (the number is now 83), Thom immediately offered to supply us with at least 50kgs of frozen fish.

He said his company cannot do much for TCC, but could do much for the children in terms of protein supply.

I told him 50kgs were too generous for us not to take but we had, and still have, storage problem. So I requested for only 20kg every time.

Since then he has supplied The Center with frozen fish which in turn was cooked for the children’s meal.

Now, with me going home to Manila, Thom was quite concerned that no one would take care of his next delivery of 20kg, a volume which I have requested because it is easy for us to handle.

The 83 kids normally consume 10kgs of fish in one sitting, which is lunch.

The Center has no storage facility, much less electricity to babysit a freezer where we could store much bigger volume of fish donation. So, we just rent a freezer space for a day or two in a freezer owned by somebody at the settlement.

I told Thom he can withhold the delivery until I come back on the second week of May, but he did not budge, worrying that our kids might not have something to go with rice for lunch.

“The kids need protein,” Tom said, and pressed me to have the next delivery done before I disappear.

He won.

I relayed his message to Hayward Sagembo, TCC president, who said he will take care of the delivery himself.

So, it’s a done deal.

I normally would take care of Thom’s frozen fish, which he delivers to me every other Friday at our meeting place in Konedobu.

Then I would bring the two boxes of frozen delights to Filipino store Yes! Grocery at Gordon where they are stored in a freezer along with other frozen foodstuff. I would pick up the goods as soon as I am ready to take them to The Center.

Yes! Grocery, under its manager Mai Sulibit, is also among our small circle of supporters.

I can’t help but admire Thom’s sincerity in promoting the welfare of the Tembari children. He has found an opportunity to help the kids and he’s doing it with enthusiasm.

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