Barangay Platinum, City of Bacoor, Philippines

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The start of this slum settlement had a very welcoming sign. ‘Brotherhood of Muslims and Christians’.

People are people, blood is red regardless of creed, and love is always better than hate.

As with many other communities, the most informally powerful people in the settlement are the shopkeepers. They usually serve as the village know-alls, the babysitters, and perhaps most importantly the money (or food) lenders. 

No bigger than a 5 by 6 foot, the little store had a few soft drinks, small sachets of soap and shampoo, some cakes, candy, and cigarettes.

We sat down with the storekeeper, and introduced ourselves. We told her why we were there and how these Freedom Cups could help her and her neighbours.

After some discussions she disappeared through the dark lanes and women started to emerge and gather.

We held a small session outside the tiny shop, distributing cups, answering questions, and realizing that women everywhere bleed just the same.

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Alex Labriola