Long-time World Vision supporter, actress Jasmine Curtis-Smith was in Cebu to visit sponsored children and students of a local School in Compostela, Cebu. Jasmine shared her advocacies with World Vision which started as early as her years as a student in Australia.
Jasmine is World Vision's Ambassador for the Youth. She joins the ranks of World Vision staunch celebrity supporters (whom I have met some; click on some of the names that are linked) which include Miriam Quiambao, Sam Milby,Nikki Gil, Marc Nelson, Christian Bautista, Julius and Tin Tin Babao, Sam Concepcion, Tippy dos Santos, Sitti Navarro among others.
Jasmine shared that she currently have 3 children (sponsored children ^_^) through World Vision's Child Sponsorship program but she also participates and encourages her friends and fans to volunteer with World Vision in other ways.
12-Hour Famine Campaign
Jasmine's involvement with World Vision started before she was even active in show business. As a student in Australia, Jasmine participated in World Vision's worldwide campaign against hunger and malnutrition, dubbed, 'Famine', which was also held in Canada, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand. In the Philippines, Jasmine promoted the 12-Hour Famine in 2012 with her older sister, fellow-actress Anne Curtis. Both Jasmine and Anne sponsor children with World Vision.
"I really like the concept of 'Famine'. It's going without food for a number of hours to raise awareness on malnutrition, which is one of the biggest problems that impact children, globally," shares the 21-year-old actress.
"[In Famine] We only go without food for at least half a day, but in the case of severely malnourished children, hunger is like a lifestyle. To understand how hunger feels like is to empathize with them and compel us to do something to alleviate their suffering."
In 2011, when Jasmine was just starting her acting career, she joined the relief operations in Bulacan where there was severe flooding caused by monsoon rains, affecting over 2,000 families. When typhoon Maring crippled some parts of Metro Manila in 2013, Jasmine and fellow WV Ambassador Tippy Dos Santos helped in the distribution of relief goods to more than 1,500 survivor-families.
Jasmine's involvement in emergency response extended to post-recovery where she helped survivors get back on their feet once again. After the devastating 7-2 magnitude earthquake that rocked Bohol in 2013, Jasmine volunteered, along with other sponsors, in the rebuilding of houses -- the petite and charming actress seen holding carpenter's tools in order to give back to the survivors the life they had lost during the calamity.
"Being on the ground has made me more socially aware. It has made me see how much help is needed, and that makes me want to give more -- whether of my resources or my time," Jasmine shared.
More recently, Jasmine joined the 'White Event', an online celebrity auction where proceeds will be used for the rehabilitation of a public school in Malabon City. In the launch last March 27 at the Makati Shangrila, she was joined by seasoned performers Tessie Tomas and Celeste Legaspi. Jasmine donated a pair of her favorite rubber shoes, among other items.
When asked what she would advise young people who wish to help but do not yet have the financial capacity to do so, Jasmine had this to say:
"Financial limitations should not stop a person from helping others. There are many other ways in which you can lend a hand."
"You can invite other people to help financially by seeking small donations from them. One way is to spread the word. For young people, it's not how much money you can give, but how far you can deliver the message. The youth of today has such an influence on their peers and family. I believe it is important for us to help make people aware of these efforts," she adds.
For his part, World Vision Director Jun Godornes recognizes Jasmine's active and invaluable contribution to World Vision and its advocacies.
"Jasmine embodies the very qualities we look for in an ambassador. She is tireless and passionate in helping children and she lives up to the same values we stand for as an organization," says Godornes.
"Her celebrity status did not hinder her from really going on the ground -- at the risk of getting dirty, or even hungry, for the sake of helping others. That, for us, is a very endearing quality -- her genuine concern and love for children, is exemplary. That is the kind of inspiration and concern for others we hope the Filipino youth would aspire for," he adds.
Looking to give back or pay it forward this season of gift giving? Why not plan your tithes by setting aside a portion for child sponsorship! For only Php600/month, you will help provide children, families & communities with access to: nutritious food, clean water, education, healthcare, livelihood opportunities and more! Click here to get started!