February 13th, 2016 | by Balaod Mindanaw
Many Filipinos, if not all, believe that number 8 is a lucky number. That is why many Filipinos hold their significant events such as house transfer, office transfer, wedding, planting, opening of a business venture, etc, either on the 8th, 18th or on the 28th of the month. And if possible, it must fall on the eighth month of the year. That is how fanatic Filipinos are on number eight because it is the only number written with the last stroke going up. And that makes it a symbol of prosperity.
But it seems that this superstitious belief has no effect in BALAOD Mindanaw’s life as an organization. You see, BALAOD was registered at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the month of August, the eighth month of the year. It celebrated its eighth anniversary in August 2008. But on its 8th year of its existence, the organization encountered the most difficult challenge that almost made it collapse to the ground. Funds were depleted and the staff experienced not receiving their full salaries for seven months in 2009.
The staff considered BALAOD Mindanaw as a big family which always allotted enough money to be spent during its anniversary celebrations. But on its 8th and 9th anniversary, the organization could not afford the same budget spent in its previous anniversary celebrations. Nevertheless, inspite of those difficult times, BALAOD Mindanaw still set aside a meager amount to celebrate those two anniversaries.
Fortunately, the wind changed its course and the rough seas that BALAOD navigated then suddenly calmed down. As the wind switched on its side, BALAOD also sailed smoothly on its tenth year of existence as a Non-Government Organization.
On the 10th year, BALAOD’s life began to bloom again, making it much healthier and stronger than before. Rightfully, it celebrated its tenth year anniversary with the theme; “10 victories in 10 years in year 2010”. The celebration became the most significant event of BALAOD for me in 2010.
The tenth year anniversary and its prior events were most significant because it led us to the culmination…. It was made significant because we survived, because we have proven to the world that we made the right decisions during those trying times. Indeed, we celebrated a decade of victories with an ever growing number of partners and friends. Together with our friends, we danced, ate and drank a lot — something that we were not able to experience in the past years.
To conclude, I could say that BALAOD Mindanaw’s lucky number is not eight, but the number 10 — the perfect score used in contests. People say that “life begins at forty”. But for BALAOD, life begins at ten. Because on that year, it surpassed many trials that strengthened the organization making it ready to face new challenges in its journey.