SOS Child Turned SOS Father To 147 Children In Davao


On a typical day, Bem balances office work as a village director and work as the father in the village. In the morning, Bem would drive his kids to school and his wife to work. And throughout the day, he would go around the village to check on the SOS mothers and co-workers for any concerns. By the afternoon, he spends his downtime with the SOS kids by chitchatting about their daily lives.

Bem was also an SOS child listening to their village father’s lectures and life lessons by the afternoon. Before, Bem could be seen helping in the household chores, tending to their backyard garden, and playing in the village grounds when he’s not in school.

Bem was just six months old when he came to the village. His mother got sick after his birth and passed away shortly, leaving baby Bem under the care of his nine-year-old sister and other siblings. Their situation is no place for any child to be in. Luckily, Bem was referred to SOS Children’s Village in Tacloban. And there, Nanay Nila provided the care of a mother that he needed.

Little Bembem (rightmost side) with his SOS mother, Nanay Nila, and his SOS siblings

Fast forward to today, Bem is now a loving village father to 147 children in SOS Davao. “Even though I never grew up with my biological father, I had my village father and SOS mother to teach me a thing or two about being a good father. They supported me and scolded me when I misbehaved. They taught me virtue and resilience,” said Bem. Bem is thankful that he chose to be a village father. All the children endearingly call him “Daddy” as if he was their true father, and he could not ask for more.

This father’s day Daddy Bem was asked, “what’s the best gift your children can give to you?” He answered, “I would like to see them grow into self-reliant, resilient, and kind individuals. That would be the best father’s day gift. And to do that, I’ll do my best to provide the caring environment they need to grow and have a chance of a better future.”

Bem with his biological family in the PhilHealth Fun Run

Bem casually having a conversation with two of his SOS children