He repays the community with kindness.
Being stranded is quite difficult, especially when you’re in a foreign land and you don’t speak the language. Many people know how that feels like. Most countries affected by the coronavirus have imposed strict travel restrictions to safeguard their people.
The Philippine government did the same in March. Therefore, locals and foreigners alike were stuck as all means of transportation, whether by land, air, or sea, had been prohibited from leaving and entering the country.
Dustin Borglin, a backpacker from Michigan, USA, was in Cebu when the lockdown was implemented. He was in another town and could not go back to his hotel room in Toledo City where he was supposed to stay only for a week.
Fortunately, a man named Raymund Adoptante and his family offered him safe and free refuge. Borglin has, since then, been staying in their home, while also documenting his life as he lives just like one of the locals.
He had already met Raymund Adoptante at a basketball game during his first visit to the Philippines. They became friends and communicated occasionally via Facebook.
His vlogs feature him having fun playing traditional games, cooking food, making Pinoy deserts like ice candy, manually washing clothes, and more.
However, Borglin’s doing more than that. He gives back to the family and the community who’ve been treating him like their own.
During his stay, he came to know the Baludoys. The couple has five children and they’re living in a dilapidated house. Seeing the poor family’s condition moved him to volunteer in renovating their shelter.
Through the funds he acquires from his YouTube channel, ‘Dustin Backpacks‘ and other social media sites under the same name, he helps the locals. He’s been involved in several house repairs and even buys groceries, which he distributes to the neighbors.
His vlogs show the simplicity of rural life, however; it also unveils the real struggles faced by people living in such remote areas in the country.
According to PEP, Borglin said, “There’s no running water, we have to walk for about 15 minutes each to take our baths from a well.” Living this way and being stripped of all the comforts he enjoys truly made him realize what’s important in life.
In the article, he said:
“People shouldn’t rely on money and material things to make them happy… The people in the village I am staying in may not have a lot of money, but they are the kindest and happiest people I have ever met.”
Borglin intends to stay there until the lockdown is over.
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