Welcome to Fanlanthropy – a new series here at The Honey POP where we shine a light on incredible stans who are using the power of fandom to do good in the world and help out important causes. Fandoms are super powerful in sharing information and working on projects, so using those impressive skills for a good cause ends in some great results.
COVID 19 has tragically impacted the world much more than just virus-wise. It has caused the world to come to a halt and, therefore, meant essential businesses and projects have struggled to operate or had to completely cease operating altogether. Charities in rural areas are facing an ongoing battle to meet the continuously growing demand for food. In the Philippines, millions of families are going hungry across the country, with many families losing their jobs and are forced to live on the streets. According to pollster Social Weather Stations, the number of people who are going hungry has reached a record high during the pandemic. It’s been reported that almost one-third of families – or 7.6 million households – did not have enough food to eat at least once in the previous three months, according to a September survey, with 2.2 million families among them experiencing severe hunger, the highest ever recorded.
Community-run food pantries have begun to develop around the country, offering free food to those in need and have multiplied over the past month. The nationwide movement was ignited again last month and soon spread quickly, and contributions mounted in vast amounts. This has inspired people such as the local BTS ARMY fan projects to get involved and help support their local communities across the country. We spoke to the organizers to learn more about their good deeds.
Can you introduce yourself to our readers?
We are ARMY Cavite Fanbase, our vision is to provide the best projects for the collective BTS ARMY in Cavite, especially in supporting BTS’ success and their career; with the mission of spreading the good BTS and ARMY Culture alongside the virtues of being members of Filipino BTS ARMY.
You are creating a pantry in your home country of the Philippines, what inspired you to create this project?
To be honest we have come up with this plan last March 28 but due to a fire incident that happened last week near our area, we prioritized helping them by donating hygiene kits to the victims before we continue conducting our community pantry. This project is my mother’s idea, she is from Japan and she thought of this because our province went back to ECQ, so we did 2 stations. The first station is located in front of our house at Windward Hills Subdivision. The second station is located in our co-admin’s house at Manuelaville Subdivision. We thought of this way in order to give help, hope, and smiles to our fellow countrymen because we know how hard for them to do a job for a living during the pandemic.
After this, we quickly tapped our loyal major ARMY sponsors. They quickly donated to us without even inquiring too much. That’s how much they trust us. We do not want to brag but this fanbase is known for being one of the most active BTS fanbases when it comes to charities. Just last year, we collected a total of 450k for the victims of typhoon Ullyses. This is why trust is already built. More than anyone else, ARMY Cavite Fanbase is just the instrument. The real heroes here are the members of the ARMY fandom who are always willing to donate and help which is also influenced by BTS knowing that they also helped a lot of people through charities which then greatly inspired our team and fandom.
Could you please explain what a pantry is for international readers who may not be aware of what one is?
It is a place of pantry that is full of goods that is available to everyone in the community. From the masses, For the masses. It is an initiative that began with the collective movement of citizens who are aware of the needs of the entire community. “Get what you need, give what you can.”
Fans are donating both supplies and money – how will these be used to benefit people using the pantry?
We use monetary donations to buy the essentials that we know our neighborhood needs. We buy sacks of rice, vegetables, groceries and we set up tables and a banner to let them know that we are going to have a free supply of food and other goods. We are blessed that there are also in-kind donations that helped us so much from spending all our budget, because of the in-kind donations we were able to make more pantries in different parts of the Philippines.
BTS is known to be heavily involved in philanthropy and charity work. How do they inspire you?
They are the driving force of our movement. BTS taught us to love ourselves and we wanted to share the love, bring hope and make other people smile. They were always humble and kind from the start that’s why they are so blessed, as their fans we wanted to represent that good culture as well. That being a BTS ARMY does not mean it’s all just fangirling, we are a community that is united to make the world a better place, too.
We know how powerful fandoms are, what do you think about fandoms and the importance of using their platforms for vital causes such as this one?
It’s human nature to feel more powerful if you are with people that you relate to. We think that’s the edge of fandoms. They have the drive to do something good in the name of their favorite artists and also their fandom. It’s very important that the fans are aware of their capability to do something for society so they can weaponize or use this power for good. With different problems happening in the world, help from different people is always welcome and it’s heartwarming to see that fans are using their big platforms to give awareness.
How can people support the pantry project?
Our pantry project will end soon. But we will have upcoming projects that we hope you can look forward to and support! Follow us on Twitter and Instagram to keep up to date.
Thanks guys! We know BTS will be beyond proud of you!
Will you be supporting ARMY Cavite in their future endeavors? Do you know any other fandoms doing good? Let us know down in the comments below or by tweeting us @TheHoneyPOP!
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Featured Image Source: Bibi Lara
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Creative Director of The Honey POP. Disney and pop culture enthusiast.