World Vision Ambassador Sam Concepcion: On sharing blessings & paying it forward

- Marigold Lebumfacil () - December 6, 2008 - 12:00am

The young, energetic and multi-talented teen star, Sam Concepcion, has found another interest and cause close to his heart. That is advocating the rights and welfare of every Filipino child as he is the latest World Vision’s Ambassador for Children.

This 16-year-old singer-actor recently took the time off from his busy schedule to visit communities in Cebu assisted by World Vision Philippines. The whole-day community visit was part of the series of activities lined up for Sam, who joins World Vision’s roster of ambassadors Karen Davila, Nikki Gil and Christian Bautista.

His career took off after winning the singing competition of ABS-CBN, “Little Big Star”. He sang the Asian version of Kung Fu Fighting, the theme song of Dreamworks Pictures’ Kung Fu Panda. Today, Sam appears in ABS-CBN’s primetime hit, I Love Betty La Fea.

For being very blessed, Sam commits himself to becoming a role model to every Filipino kid by paying it forward. In this way, he hopes that all Filipino children will aspire for better education and success in life as much as he does.

As World Vision ambassador, Sam is active in various World Vision activities. During his visit, he encouraged everyone to share their blessings, so much so poor Filipino families can experience the joy of Christmas through World Vision’s Noche Buena Gift.

“I feel very blessed to be part of World Vision since they have been helping children for years. Being a child myself, this is a great opportunity for me to relate to other children. I am looking forward to all the things I will be doing [as Ambassador for Children],” Sam shared.

At the press launch of the campaign at the Mango Park Hotel, Sam encouraged the Cebuanos to extend a helping hand to underprivileged, fellow Filipinos this Christmas season.

Sam narrated about his experiences with World Vision, including the time he went to Sogod and to the mountainous school barangay in Busay Elementary School, wherein he was inspired just by listening to the stories of the children he met.

“These kids have full of hope. They are hoping to have a better future. We have the responsibilities to give them a helping hand,” he said.

“I encourage you to sponsor a child. Your heart felt support can change the life of a child and it’s Christmas, so it’s timely to share our blessings to them,” he added.

Before becoming an ambassador for children, Sam had already supported a child named Edmar from Mizamis Occidental since 2005 until now through World Vision’s Child Sponsorship Program.

“Even us young people, we can make a difference. It’s a choice that we can make to give them a better future.”

His mother, Gina Concepcion, who is an advocate of change in the New Life Church, inspired Sam to take part in the sponsorship program.

Currently, World Vision has 9,000 sponsored kids in Cebu who are enjoying the benefits given by those who have sponsored them through a monthly donation of P600. Nationwide, World Vision sponsors a total of 121,000 children!

The organization originally solicits sponsorships from their benefactors abroad. But for the last 10 years, the group has been challenging local sponsors to do their share in helping children who are deprived of the means to better their lives.

Boris Joaquin of World Vision Central Office said that by sponsoring a child, it gives him/her the inspiration to excel not just academically but in other aspects of life. “Knowing that somebody out there is helping and checking on them, they are motivated to excel in class and watch their health,” Joaquin added.

It was last month when Sam was launched as the New Ambassador for Children during the Children’s Month Celebration. Aside from that, Sam is also the Youth Spokesperson and Role Model of the Department of Education.

Sam is home-schooled and is now in tenth grade.

If he were to decide on what to take up in college, he would make sure that it is related to music and the arts as these are his passion.

Fresh from the success of his first major solo concert last October at the Music Museum, Sam is now busy preparing for his more concerts on December 20 at The Fort and on February next year.

When asked about his Little Big Star runner-up, Charice Pempengco, who is making waves in the US following, he expressed happiness for her success.

“I am happy for her. She is very accomplished, having been singing with these famous international artists,” Sam said.

“She is very inspiring. She is an inspiration for us that we Filipinos could be famous outside our native land and be known world wide. She’s an avenue for us Filipinos to be known all over the world.”

Last week, he launched the Noche Buena Campaign which sends Christmas baskets and presents to beneficiaries, making sure the many Filipino children will have a merry Christmas this year.

The campaign assures that for every P1,000 donation, one family enjoys a nice Noche Buena.

Share the love this Christmas Season and visit World Vision’s Christmas booths in Ayala (3rd level across KFC) and in SM (2nd level across Globelines) from this day on until December 22.

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