Tuesday, June 25, 2019

To Make a Difference

To Make a Difference
The first day that I called a meeting in the new subdivision, the oldest woman there asked if she could ask something. "May we please start by reading from the Bible and praying. Every week." Please note: our division was multi-cultural.

So I called the others and every one welcomed the suggestion with open arms. It grew from there and now we do it on Fridays too. We ask God to guide us over the weekend. We read from the Bible in Afrikaans, and then translate it into English and South Sotho. We pray and sing in English and South Sotho. Everyone is so enthusiastic about sharing scripture and we bless everyone, Mondays and Fridays.

That specific subdivision was so demotivated, couldn't work, and was afraid to make decisions because of the investigation. But after we invited God into our workplace and even during the week encouraged one another with God's Word, the atmosphere changed completely. Despite everything, instead of stress, we experience calm.

There is a feeling of inhuman peace in our building and all of us can feel it. We work in harmony and where this one woman got upset by even the smallest problems, she has grown calmer and we can resolve our differences calmly.


How many stories do we have to tell to know that when we invite God inside, it brings peace. It becomes peaceful. Then stress disappears, even if the circumstances are not so good.

Each of us must make God real more and more and involve Him wherever we go. We need God to bring peace to our world.

And as I type this devotional, my cell phone rings. It's 06h00. I see it's my pal and when he calls so early, I know something's wrong.

He asks for advice and wisdom. There was a break-in at a teacher's home. Her husband was murdered. Tis on the day that people were requested to wear black to create awareness of all the murders in our country...

And before I become negative, I reread Nadia's story. We cannot allow the actions of people who mess up like that get us down. Our country and our world need God.

Therefore, each of us needs to live our calling. Through her position, Nadia allowed God to come into her workplace. She was living her calling.

Paul couldn't stop himself from living his calling: 7This and this only has been my appointed work: getting this news to those who have never heard of God, and explaining how it works by simple faith and plain truth.

And now we get back to ourselves. Are you living your calling there where you work, live and play?


1 Timothy 2:1-7


Where is God's peace required in your world?
What is your calling?
What can you do to bring about God's peace?


Lord, we need your peace. Our world is such a big mess. We know we cannot make it work. You are the only solution. Please help us to make You part of our world. Please help us to live our calling wherever we go. Amen.

Local Government Bonds: Will They Work?

Local Government Bonds: Will They Work?
Urban planners would also do well to shape ideas for similar ventures. For example, the Tacloban North Township Project of Tacloban City can be a model for uprooting entire communities from danger zones to more a more ideal settlement area.

(2) Land Banking

LGUs that think through issues of squatting (which is a tax on idle property) and disaster response should also do well to buy land now (while still available and relatively cheaper) for future needs of their constituency.

(3) Aged Care Homes and Services

LGUs can add value to what the Philippine Retirement Authority offers by building specialty facilities for the elderly, including those that require medical care for dementia, Alzheimer's and other physical ailments caused by wear and tear. Filipinos excel (competitive advantage) in caregiving largely because of their culture: respect for elders and moorings from extended families. The market is simply too big (and growing by the day) to be ignored. Estimates show that in 25 years almost one-third of the population of the USA, Japan and most European countries would be nearing retirement age. Unlike the Philippines, the ties that bind families in these countries are not as "strong," where elders are often left to fend for themselves. These elders, one may further note, are not "freeloaders," boosting financial viability of these investments.

(4) Organic Agriculture

The objective is to help local farmers compete with the established producers and traders by organizing and continuously training them, and providing them with the required start up and working capital requirements. The "organic" niche can help them stand out from the competition.

(5) Franchisee for Disaster Relief

LGUs can "sub-contract" from DSWD its disaster relief operations on a bill-me-later basis. Government personnel, except probably those who have military or police training, are hardly known for their skills in logistics management. But all other things being equal, LGUs are in a better position to respond more effectively to disaster relief needs due to their proximity to affected areas.

How to Plan a Memorable and Effective Event?

How to Plan a Memorable and Effective Event?
Planning an event is never easy. It involves getting plenty of things right and to the point. Most event organizers find the job stressful and often feel overwhelmed by its intensity and enormity. A lot of planning goes into making an event successful and when the goal is to make it memorable, the effort can multiply easily. However, great results are also inevitable if you execute your event plans well and consider all things in detail. So, rather than feeling worried about the looming event, you must rather look to amp up the preparation so that the goal is achieved, and the client is delivered with success.

First, you must start early when the event is big in nature, at least four to six months in advance for a large event and at least one month for smaller events. It's also essential to complete all vendor contracts a few weeks prior to the event. Similarly, you must stay flexible during the planning stage of the event as certain changes are unavoidable and you must be ready for that. It's always a good thing to be ready to face any immediate changes to the schedule, time, location or scale of the event. This will save you disappointment and you can thus prepare well for the event.

Further, you must figure out the budget and do a cost analysis in advance so that your negotiations with the vendor go on expected lines. There will unexpected costs and once you know the budget before, you can negotiate with the vendor, offer to pay at least 5-10% lower than the quoted prices to save money for exigencies. More importantly, you must look to assign responsibilities to the team members by breaking the event into different sections to ensure things move ahead smoothly. You must also make each team responsible for acts and activities falling in their sections.

If possible, you should create a central document detailing every activity and give access to every member on the team. Coordination between the team can becomes easier when all the key details regarding the event, including vendor contracts, floor plan, attended details, are listed in the document. To avoid needless hassles in the meantime, you must create a back-up plan for key aspects of the event. This will save you inconvenience that last-minute glitches often cause. Once everything is planned and arranged, you should do a run through of the entire process a week or two before the big day to be sure of things moving in without any issues.

More so, it's always a good idea to capture key things and details of the event in the picture, and yes, you can also share those picks online to showcase to the world your ability to host a great event. You must hire only a professional photographer so that the best possible shots are taken, encompassing major aspects easily like the snap of the room full of guests, shots of the lights and dining and arrangements etc. This is how you can do branding of the event which in turn will help you win more clients.

Lastly, you must look to leverage the power of social media to take your event to thousands of people with virtually no cost. You can create a hashtag for your event on Facebook and Twitter to increase participation. You can seek comments and conversations and then you can upload event photos to give a clear picture of the things done by you there. All this will make your event stand out and become as memorable and effective as you have planned it to be in the first place.