On December 10, 2015 Kaisahang Buhay Foundation marked a major milestone in its years of service for the welfare of Filipino children and families. It had been 40 years since KBF was first established in 1975, initially as the Philippine arm of Holt International Children’s Services Inc. Thus it was indeed a delight and an honor to have officials of Holt, led by its President & CEO Phillip Littleton, grace the anniversary celebration held at the Valle Verde Country Club—along with representatives of the founding Directors of KBF, friends and colleagues from the Department of Social Welfare and Development and fellow-NGOs, and the entire KBF family.
International guests – Mr. Littleton was accompanied by Thoa Bui, Holt’s Senior Executive for South and Southeast Asia, and Dean Hale, Holt’s Director of Adoption Services – India & Philippines. An extra-special guest was Molly Holt, daughter of Holt founders Harry and Bertha Holt. Ms. Holt and her traveling companion Kim Kyung Hee had flown from South Korea, where she continues her parents’ legacy at the ILSAN adoption agency in Seoul, just to join KBF’s anniversary event.
Philippine guests – Representing the founding members and earliest Directors of KBF were Dean Josefina Pineda, Mr. Carlos Torres (KBF Board Chairman, 1978-2015), and Dr. Cornelio Banaag. Representing DSWD was Director Alicia Bonoan of the NCR Regional Office, while Ms. Beth Pangan, founding Director of NORFIL Foundation, and founding trustees of the Adoptive Families Foundation, John and Gloria Boren and Antonia Siy, also joined the occasion.
Anniversary programme – Among the highlights of the programme were the keynote address of Holt President, Phil Littleton;
the video message from past Holt President John Williams, sent all the way from Oregon, USA; and the presentation of plaques of appreciation to Ms. Molly Holt, to Holt International Children’s Services, to the founding directors of KBF, to Executive Director Rosario de la Rosa, to Trustees Ma. Victoria Vinas and Jo Ann de Larrazabal, and to Malou Cortez, sponsor of the ILEA scholars’ group home. KBF extends heartfelt thanks to you all!
Further highlights were the sharing by adoptive parents Gil and Cecile Velez; the recognition awards for Outstanding Foster Parents, KBF’s Outstanding Employee for 2015, Roselyn Lorenzana and KBF staff marking their 10th, 15th and 20th years of service. Warmest congratulations!