Two Filipino children in the UAE are using their talents in painting to help those victims of typhoon Odette in the Philippines which brought torrential rains, violent winds, floods and storm surges to the Visayas and Mindanao Islands.
Filipino students Bhlaine Joseph Canlas, 7, and Francis Bhrielle, 4, use canvas and different colors of fluid acrylic paints. They mix and play with the colors to create an abstract that the parents sell online to help those Odette-battered residents in the Philippines. Their project is called Be A Rainbow like their vibrant paintings with a message of hope to those who need it most.
According to their mother, Allanie Canlas, the kids love colors and have been even more than favorites thus when they tried it they are in awe as a little tweak can change the final product.
Both of them are currently enrolled in a Philippine-based school and are doing online classes. Bhlaine is a Grade 1 student while Francis is a Nursery 2 student. They are doing online academic lessons from Edulinks Learning Centre in Cebu, Philippines.
Born in Abu Dhabi, the brothers visited the Philippines a few times already.
“UAE has blessed us with so much from work to affordable simple lifestyle. Our kids know the value of money and are happy with simple things (1 candy can make their day). We pray as a family and prayers for other people are included in it. We raise them to be thankful for what they have and be mindful of the needs of others too,” Allanie told The Global Filipino Magazine.
The mother recounted two years ago when they were in Al Ain they gave food packages to those who lost their jobs and the kids were part of it.
“That was their first donation drive and Bhlaine said that it felt so good. Every time we go out and see a cleaner on the streets we share our blessings and the kids are observing it,” she added.
A few weeks ago, she recalled, Bhlaine collected chocolates and water bottles in a park in Abu Dhabi. The mother asked her son why.
“”There is a cleaner here, I will give this to him”. Indeed when the cleaner came back he gave it all,” Allanie said.
Their original plan for Christmas this year was to recycle water bottle caps that they and their friends collected to make a bin, fill it with food, and give it to cleaners on the street. However, typhoon Odette hit the Philippines including Allanie’s hometown and Bhlaine’s teacher in Cebu.
“I showed the sad aftermath to the kids and we brainstormed on how to do our part. We came up with this painting idea, tried one and the rest is an amazing experience. It is a play of colors and both are having fun. They even have names for each masterpiece that they make,” she said.
The mother revealed that she and her husband are not into arts but the kids show interest in it.
“We just support and let them do what they want to create. We observe it is just a natural talent for both kids to create an artwork out of their imagination and interest,” she added.
The first batch of eight paintings has already been sold and a few pieces are left in the second batch.
“We are not rich financially but with family and love we are. Being a parent is always a challenge but we are rest assured that Bhlaine and Bhrielle will grow up knowing the value of empathy. This would come out naturally to them and we have witnessed it many times,” the very supportive mother said.
She described her sons as ‘very understanding kids’ and that they are thankful and proud that their ways reflect them.
“We hope to nurture their love and compassion for humanity in need, we pray that our kids will embrace the world with kindness and generosity of spirit. Because today we their parents help them build a future of caring individuals,” she added.
To buy one of their paintings, message the mother’s Facebook account Allanie Abrasaldo-Canlas or click here to go to her profile directly.