A dream to help abused kids

DUBAI — The dream of a young woman to run an orphanage after her childhood experience of watching Annie, a musical about an orphan, has captured the hearts of a Dubai couple who are doing their bit to help the charity.

By Zoe Sinclair (Our staff reporter)

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Published: Tue 4 Dec 2007, 9:05 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 2:07 AM

Daniel and Jeannie Ough, who run a recruitment consultant business, said the charity fills an important need for helping abused children from a typhoon-ravaged area in the Philippines.

It was also their acquaintance with the charity's founder, Gail Narramore, that led them to become involved.

Daniel's father, Donald, a preacher, met Gail on a train in England, and picked up a conversation over their shared faith.

"He was a friend of strangers," Daniel said. "When he died last year we were thinking about what to do with the memorial gifts and we remembered Gail. We wanted to see what we could do."

Gail established the charity, Tiwala Kids and Communities, a registered non-profit non-governmental organisation in January this year.

Jeannie said Gail was overwhelmed with the gesture of memorial gifts towards the charity.

The area Gail has chosen to work in, Bicol in the Philippines, was badly affected by Typhoon Remming.

Tiwala is working towards purchasing land and establishing an orphanage and day-care centre in Santo Domingo.

"Gail has identified a section of the community whose needs were not being met," she said. "These children were abused and need counselling and education to help them become something other than street kids."

Daniel's brother, Michael, is currently travelling in the Philippines, on the charity's sponsorship to better understand the needs of the orphanage.

"He'll be able to find out what the real needs are and provide an informed opinion," Daniel said.

In the meantime, the charity is raising funds for 320 blankets for the children in the village who currently sleep on cardboard boxes.

"People need to understand you don't need to give thousands you can give Dh100 and give 10 blankets," Daniel said.

"People can give in a small way, with their time, or they can volunteer."

Daniel said the strong Filipino community in Dubai had already reacted to the charity enthusiastically.

"They all wanted to help," he said. "They wanted to know what they could do at Christmas time."

The Oughs said people could visit the website www.tiwala.org and find out more about how to participate in a noble cause.

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