Ironic scene caught in Davao restaurant

The rich and the poor contrast in this photo by my friend and former MindaNews colleague Keith. It’s both apt and poignant. Who do you serve? Who gets what you serve? Why do the “haves” do not always meet the “have nots”? More photos at Kitoy’s World.

kitoy.jpg

About mindanaw

A Journalist from Mindanao

14 responses to “Ironic scene caught in Davao restaurant”

  1. Arnulfo Daroy says :

    Everytime I visit the Philippines and I see these kids I always give them some food or a few pesos. But what is troubling to me is the lack of assistance I see their from there fellow countrymen.
    These kids can be infront of a resturant such as the one shown in this photo ,and people inside eat their meals as if that kid doesnt even exisit.
    If you can eat in a Chowking or Jolibees ,surely you can spare a peso or two.

  2. May says :

    I can’t help but feel slighted by the earlier comment. I still live in the Philippines. True enough I don’t give a peso or two each and every time because I have already chosen not to. I either give them food or ask them to join me sa table ko. I am being careful about giving them money directly kasi marami sa kanila just use them for a time sa computer shop or bili ng rugby or yosi. I am a regular sponsor of World Vision for more than 3 years now. Many filipinos lend a hand but not need to show everyone that they do and hindi lang siya papiso-piso.

  3. Blogie says :

    May is right, many, many Filipinos do their share to help out. Mr. Daroy’s comment does indeed sound offensive at first, but I’m sure he did not mean to generalize.

    Personally, I do not give money to the kids, for the same reasons that May gave. Some suggestions I’d like to give:
    1. If you smoke, buy from the street vendors instead of from the grocery — it’s only a few pesos more expensive.
    2. Volunteer time and effort (and food/medicine) to charitable institutions, such as the Sisters of Charity’s orphanage or home for the aged.
    3. Keep biscuits or sandwiches in your car for giving to beggars, instead of giving them coins.

  4. mindanaw says :

    Thanks for all your comments.
    There’s really a myriad of ways to respond to one scene. I believe that all possible actions respond to one specific part of the needs of these children.
    I think there is not one wrong move for as long as it is sincere because, surely, the problem is much more complicated than what meets the eye.
    Talk of being of help instantaneously, like the point raised by Arnulfo, my belief is that, its a logical response for someone in passing. I mean for someone who is not from the place.
    For the locals, who see the problem everyday, maybe morelasting affirmative actions could be drawn. Such as those illustrated in May’s and Blogie’s points.
    I specifically find Dominique’s post profound. It presents tous another facet of this issue.But just the same, thee children,behave in the way they do now because of circumstances not of their own making. I mean these conditions are consequences of bigger social problems. In short, they too, are just victims.
    Davao City’s Mayor Rodrigo Duterte is so blunt about his bias against the transformative juvenile justice system because it excempts minors from imprisonment, I mean liability for criminal acts. It’s quite alarming of course to see children being used as pawns in the criminal world because they arepowerless.

    Wew, It’s really an uphill drive for their redemption.

    Personally I’ve reflected on the reason why I posted that photo plus my impulsive caption.

    As a blogging journalist, am I doing what is expected from me to do to help address the problem?

    Anyway, Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I really appreciate it.

  5. kitoy says :

    walts. please update your link. my new photoblog is http://www.keith.bacongco.com thanks!

  6. KoPi says :

    I only browsing for davo pictures on google and yet this picture caught my attention. The first question that came to my mind was if is this poor child homeless or somewhat abandoned by his parents?
    Naawa ako,I’ve seen alot of children across manila-cavite,There are times na pag nagpupunta ako sa mall meron mga bata na lumalapit saken and are asking for money.
    I once asked a kid walking around sa Makati if where are his parents,and he said he was asked to sell “sampaguita” para may pagkain sya.
    Learning this kind of situation sa pilipinas is really pitiful.
    seeing that poor kid lying down on a cold cement floor and waiting for someone to help him is really troubling. * sigh *

  7. cebu real estate says :

    i once walk around fuente osmena cebu city and on the skywalk i saw two kids lying like this and an old blind man ..

    my partners in business bought a pizza for us to eat near club ultima cebu , after we eat there are still two pieces left and so my partnert give it to me and put it inside the plastic ..

    i walk back to these kids , the one is awake and begging for money so what i did , is that i told him to give the other piece to the other kid sleeping ..

    as i got down and look up the skywalk , everyone who walk beside them watches as these two kids were eating da vinci’s pizza pie in cebu .. the norm people looks it as a very weird situation as how these poor beggars able to eat clean pizzas ..

    i was happy and was smiling at the people .. and happy for the kids who were able to eat pizza once in their lifetime. . i may not be able to give them it daily but i once give it to them .. a great experience on my side and i guess a memorable dinner for the two beggars ..

    here in cebu a lot of them still begging from rich but cannot share people .

  8. ginette echavarria says :

    If God dwells in your heart even what status you are in the society , you may be poor or the super rich in this planet earth. Mind you it is automatic you will have that human nature to spare what God has given you. But if all of us will just come to realize and ask our selves this questions” WHY I am on this planet Earth? Why of all people I am here ?.What is my mission? What is my purpose why until now I am alive. ” If all of us will do our share then no one will be begging for food on the streets. No one will be staying or living on the streets like this little boy in the picture . .What we have now is just only temporary we are all CARE TAKER of the blessings in TRUSTED by God to each one of us in this world.Unless each one of us will be totally renewed Christian..not in words but in deed mind you you wont not see people begging on the street. No one will be starving. That if only Jesus is our center of our life , then we have more than enough to share…Sharing is not only money but sharing of our 3 Ts . TIME< TREASURE <and Talent .

  9. Stefan Thiesen says :

    Hi,
    all well and true, and I also have my own sad experiences with street children in the Phils. However… this particular picture reminds me of times in my own childhood, hot summers, when I was sleeping on the back of my father’s truck in the pressing, humid heat of July afternoons… This boy looks healthy – is it sure that he is not simply the son of the store owner lazing around, having a siesta? It doesn’t change anything about the issue, but being a photographer myself who saw some despair – I am not entirely convinced that this picture actually shows much suffering…

    Greetings from Germany
    Stefan

  10. Mars says :

    Reading your stories gives me mixed feelings, but the prevailing one is that of sadness because it seems many are just so used to seeing and encountering children begging on the streets over there.
    i cringe at myself, remembering my first encounter. i was sitting in the backseat of my car, a high school grad from Virgina, not wanting to be there, consoling myself with a freshly opened can of Pringles.
    Tap Tap Tap…a forlorn little face pressed up on my window. I rolled down my window and gave a handful of my Pringles. But he wanted more. And I didn’t want to share anymore. So, I rolled up my window and we drove away. That was in 1995.
    It’s 2008 and I have been back in the US since 2000 after graduating from college there. Seeing that this photo is dated 2007, makes it even more heartbreaking that there are still starving children in the Philippines!

    Thank you ginette echavarria for your wisdom and passionate words. Stefan Thiesen, I can respectfully see what you mean about this photograph. That perhaps this child may appear “healthier” than other poor children. Is it because his ribs look like they have little bit more meat on them, then other photographs of poor homeless children in 3rd world countries? Maybe this picture does not depict this child’s entire financial/emotional/physical state of well being. Still, There is no way that this child in the photograph is the son of the store owner. A store owner of a Jollibee Fast Food chain, surely can afford to provide their child with shoes, clothing, education, activities, a bed to sleep in and would not allow their child to just sleep in front of the restaurant window sill during the middle of the day! This barefoot child is not lounging on a familiar spot, like your father’s truck bed. This child is obviously without adult supervision, out in the middle of a city setting, alone, out of place and in need of some love, attention and food. So, Stephan, please, I mean, really – Let’s not split hairs on what pictures show more suffering and which pictures don’t show enough suffering.

    It’s appalling. It’s about time I stop waiting to hear the tap tap on my window, waiting ’til a child of the streets tugs at my sleeve, begging for help. It hurts me to hear these children being labeled as “street urchins” – like they are worthless, beneath us. Don’t you know, that they are just innocent children, obviously without any other recourse to turn to?

    They are our kababayans, our countrymen, our people. Here in the States, I’m going to do my part by supporting the APL Benefit, by designing a digital scrapbook kit called Mabuhay!2 together with Aimee Designs based in Davao city. We will release the charity kit this October 2008, in conjunction with the Filipino American Heritage Month. All proceeds, minus paypal fee, will go to the APL Benefit, that supports the Pearl S. Buck Foundation in the Philippines. For more information and updates on this project visit

    http://cactusmangogives.googlepages.com/october2008

  11. Mars says :

    I was looking for photos taken of the Philippines to inspire a color scheme for a digital scrapbook kit I am designing with a lady in Davao. I did a google search for photos of Davao and this is the first one that I came across.

    I read the comments of some people and It got me all riled up and upset that this is still so prevalent even outside of Manila. It just makes me sad that there is still children suffering in the Philippines.

    Reading everyone’s stories gives me mixed feelings, but the prevailing one is that of sadness because it seems many are just so used to seeing and encountering children begging on the streets over there.

    I cringe at myself, remembering my first encounter. i was sitting in the backseat of my car, a high school grad from Virgina, not wanting to be there, consoling myself with a freshly opened can of Pringles.

    Tap Tap Tap…a forlorn little face pressed up on my window. I rolled down my window and gave a handful of my Pringles. But he wanted more. And I didn’t want to share anymore. So, I rolled up my window and we drove away. That was in 1995.

    It’s 2008 and I have been back in the US since 2000 after graduating from college there. Seeing that this photo is dated 2007, makes it even more heartbreaking that there are still starving children in the Philippines!

    Thank you ginette echavarria for your wisdom and passionate words. Stefan Thiesen, I can respectfully see what you mean about this photograph. That perhaps this child may appear “healthier”, than what? other poor children? Is it because his ribs look like they have little bit more meat on them, then other photographs of poor homeless children famously photographed? Maybe this picture does not depict this child’s entire financial/emotional/physical state of well being. Still, There is no way that this child in the photograph is the son of the store owner.

    In my opinion, a store owner of a Jollibee Fast Food chain, surely can afford to provide their child with shoes (at least a pair of tsinelas(slippers), clothing, education, activities, a bed to sleep in and would not allow their child to just sleep in front of the restaurant window sill during the middle of the day! This barefoot child is not lounging on a familiar spot, like your father’s truck bed. This child is obviously without adult supervision, out in the middle of a city setting, alone, out of place and in need of some love, attention and food. So, Stephan, please, I mean, really – Let’s not split hairs on what pictures show more suffering and which pictures don’t show enough suffering.

    It’s appalling. It’s about time I stop waiting to hear the tap tap on my window, waiting ’til a child of the streets tugs at my sleeve, begging for help. It hurts me to hear these children being labeled as “street urchins” – like they are worthless, beneath us. Don’t you know, that they are just innocent children, obviously without any other recourse to turn to?

    They are our kababayans, our countrymen, our people. Here in the States, I’m going to do my part by supporting the APL Benefit, by designing a digital scrapbook kit called Mabuhay!2 together with Aimee Designs based in Davao city. We will release the charity kit online at kjoistudios.com this October 2008, in conjunction with the Filipino American Heritage Month. All proceeds, minus paypal fee, will go to the APL Benefit, that supports the Pearl S. Buck Foundation in the Philippines. For more information and updates on this project visit

    http://cactusmangogives.googlepages.com/october2008

  12. search engines says :

    Hi. I read a few of your other posts and wanted to know if you would be interested in exchanging blogroll links?

  13. Computer Shop says :

    Thank you for your post

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