February 8, 2011; Source: Asian Week | The ABS CBN Foundation International, a U.S.-based foundation for one of the Philippines’ largest broadcasting companies, has announced its official partnership with Seafood City Supermarkets to collect donations for the foundation’s main program, Bantay Bata (Child Watch), a child rescue and welfare program. Bantay Bata operates a 24/7 hotline number and a children’s village that offers safe transitional shelter for extreme cases of child abuse, neglect, and illness.

The partnership with the West Coast supermarket is a perfect match. Over a million Filipinos live in California, making it the largest concentration of Filipinos in the U.S.  The Filipino community has been patronizing Seafood City stores dispersed throughout the Golden State for decades and its members are now able to help through outright donations or a percentage of their purchases.

Low income and poor individuals and families in developing countries often depend heavily on the financial support of family members in developed countries. Those without relatives in richer nations occasionally benefit from the generosity of expatriates who feel a connection to those in need in their home countries. The Philippine Department of Social Welfare and Development reports that, in 2009, more than 6,500 child abuse cases were served. It is most likely many more child abuse and neglect cases go unreported. — Erwin de Leon