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JoHo & The Smokey Projects

JoHo & The Smokey Projects

Smokey Projects - The Goals & Initiatives

Smokey Projects - The Goals & Initiatives

Smokey Goals, Projects and Initiatives

  • Smokey Projects hopes to bring societal change in our communities, either small or on a much bigger scale. It is a huge goal, and we work in small steps. It is not easy, and sometimes things go smoothly, sometimes not at all. 
  • We try to do the things the best way we can, and we always try to find ways to be more sustainable.
  • Thank you all very much for supporting us!

The Goals

  • Smokey Projects aims to improve the living conditions in Baseco’s, and other slum areas in Tondo, Metro Manila.
  • Providing positive and meaningful impacts on those living in the slums have been our goal since the inception of Smokey. We have distributed relief goods and given qualitative training on talent development, health and disaster preparedness that will surely help the slum community cope with the daily challenges that they face. Cooperation and coordination with non-government organizations, people’s organizations and concerned individuals have been vital in successfully addressing these short to medium term social issues as we race to reach our goals.

The Projects & Initiatives

  • In 2022, during a Baseco Tour, a guest witnessed a fire in the area where the tour was being conducted. After the tour, the guest kindly donated 60 fire extinguishers to the community where the tour is held. Since then, a number of fires have been prevented and at least seven units have been refilled. Two years later, in the first quarter of 2024, the project was replicated to cover more areas, distribute another 60 units, and train more people in operating extinguishers.
  • Since the beginning of 2023 has BYSMP Bless the Children taken over the operations of Smokey Tours. All skills and best- and worst practices have been shared. A new facility has opened in Baseco with a small outlet shop to give livelihood to the tourleaders and other people in the community.
  • Several large boxes of travel materials were shipped to the Philippines in the fall of 2023. Bless the Children has a souvenir corner in the just-opened office in Baseco, where the slum tour ends, which includes travel supplies. 
  • Smokey Tours works with the pay-it-forward system. A guest does the slum tour, and the guest thereby supports the local tour leader and also for a small part the projects of Bless the Children. Sometimes the slum tour guests donate energy, goods, or money. Among other things, former guests donated shoes. A total of 586 shoes were donated. Many families do not have the budget to purchase shoes for their school-aged children. The shoes are required to attend school.
  • A project of Bless the Children's Philippine Summer was a talent development activity. The "Laro ng Lahi" (literal = games from our ancestry) is an annual event. Being out of the slum environment for three days allowed 1.200 children to recharge, have fun, and gain insight into their own qualities and talents. 
  • From 2020 until now we have started working together with BYSMP Bless the Children Foundation and Project Propel more closely. The goal is to exchange skills and talents. Smokey has helped with our tourleaders to start the Talent Development in the slum community that our partners support. The covid situation has made the local work al lot harder, but only more needed.
  • After we have done a Baseline study in Baseco. We have focussed our Energy on Talent Development. We want to help people help themselves, to gain confidence and to be able to provide for their families. We give Talent Development Programs in Baseco, with the goal that people can find a paid job. 
  • In 2020 Business/families in charge of water filter system have been selected in partnership with Project Propel and through ocular assessment with the following criteria: Each resident was hand selected due to their community reach, accessibility, and proximity to water hose/source. 10 Families and their communities can have life long clean water, which will decrease diseases and the families can drink cheaply more clean water.
  • Another project with Project Propel is the start of the Floating gardens in area of mangroves of the PRCMO in Baseco as livelihood of 10 families with the goal of Nutrition.
  • In 2019 with donations we have funded our Baseco Recycle Worker Project, where we have trained 6 Baseco Recycle workers and their communities. After 6 months, they were able to function by themselves, with the tools needed, saved and partly funded, like a Tribike or a cart to pick up Garbage.
  • We have started after the fire disaster to give loans to community members, with coaching and money, they are able to rebuild their businesses and to provide for themselves. 
  • In 2018 we continued our Efforts in the Community in Health Projects, we support a group of 45 pregnant ladies. With folic acid and with skills training regarding healthy food, living and breast feeding. 
  • In 2017 we opened a Health Center - for the people of - Aplaya in the barangay Baseco, Manila. Aplaya is the part of Baseco that hardly receives any help from NGO’s because of its remote and isolated location. The Health Center has been a place where individuals and/or families can go to check on their physical and mental well being, for medical consultation and treatment and/or to obtain medicines - if necessary. The goal is to improve the conditions of the people of Baseco by treating diseases or illnesses and providing them with clean water, so they will be able to avoid water borne diseases. The local Health Workers are visiting the community to check and help the weak and sick people. 
  • From 2016 we initiated and facilitated the Smokey Art Center: Boxless Society.The Boxless Society will help the community in Baseco with art workshops, with the goal to discover Talents of the residents. In a society that is increasingly becoming insensitive to the plight of people with mental illness, we have taken the cudgels to promote the advocacy of eliminating all shame and stigma and creating a support group for artists with mental illness and their caregivers. We believe that mental illness is nothing more than an illness, nothing more, nothing less. That it is not a mental disability if the person affected can function in society provided the illness, like all other illnesses, is properly managed. 
  • In 2015 we started with Smokey Tours. The project that empowered, trained and gave livelihood to people from impoverished areas to run safe and eye-opening tours for our guests in Manila. Our freelance tour leaders were an example in their communities; they learn, learn to take the lead and help others. It has been a journey to teach our tourleaders work ethics and to coach them finding a future job somewhere else. Smokey Tours wants to be a stepping stone for our tour leaders, after 2 years they made place for new tour leaders. We aimed to raise awareness about social issues and to bridge the gap between people from different backgrounds. Our Slum Tour in particular gave our guests a chance to experience something unique. We planted a seed in their conscience so that they think about the world and about helping out. 
Smokey Projects - The Job & Training Center

Smokey Projects - The Job & Training Center


Smokey Job Center & Talent Development

  • In 2019, we have started a small Job Center in Baseco, so we can inspire and help, people to help themselves.
  • We will recruit and train more Freelance Tour Leaders, and they will help the community with their Talent Development.
  • In slum communities, as in any other place, are a lot of people with talents and skills, you will see.
  • It is just a way of helping others to discover their talents and to help people to find a job, with job application training and intensive coaching and guidance.

Smokey Baseco Recycle Workers Project

  • In the last quarter of 2018, we have started together with the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC): the Baseco Recycle Workers Project.
  • Every 6 months, for the duration of 1,5 years, 3 Recycle Workers will be paid and trained to segregate and recycle waste.
  • Together with the households in their own communities, trainings on Solid Waste Management are given. 
  • After 6 months, the Baseco Recycle Workers own their own cart and can provide for their own Livelihood.
Smokey Projects - The Tours

Smokey Projects - The Tours


Smokey Tours Social Impact

Our Tour Leaders

  • We empower, train and give livelihood to people from impoverished areas to run safe and eye-opening tours for our guests in Manila. Our freelance Tour Leaders are an example in their communities; they learn, learn to take the lead and help others. It has been a journey to teach our freelancers work ethics and to coach them finding a future job somewhere else. Smokey Tours wants to be a stepping stone for our Tour Leaders, after 2 years they make place for new Tour Leaders.

Our Guests

  • We aim to raise awareness about social issues and to bridge the gap between people from different backgrounds. Our Slum Tour in particular gives our guests a chance to experience something unique. We hope to plant a seed in their conscience so that they think about the world and about helping out. 

Our Communities

  • We use 100% of the profit of the Slum Tour to improve the living conditions in underprivileged communities. We work towards the goal that our communities are equipped and empowered to create social change for themselves and others. We focus on Talent Development and we want to empower them and to help them to help themselves, so that they may learn to stand independently.

Our Covid Situation

  • BYSMP Bless the Children is educating, with the help of Smokey projects, new tourleaders to continue with the slum tour. To book tours, please contact them directly.



Smokey Projects - The Community Library

Smokey Projects - The Community Library


    • The Community Library collects educational books to freely lend to the kids in BASECO, by creating a habit for reading, kids may eventually elevate themselves from their impoverished state of affairs.
    • Smokey is supporting by soliciting guests to donate books and funding to build shelves and a roof for all the books, to be kept safe and dry. 
    • In the Community Library are also activities being held for the kids, like origami by our Japanese volunteers, remedial teaching by our Dutch volunteers, reading and writing by our own tourleader(s)
    Smokey Projects History: The Health Center

    Smokey Projects History: The Health Center



      The Health  Center

      • Bearing great news last 2017, all the planning and hard work bore fruit as we established our health center in collaboration with the residents of the slum of Baseco. On 13 May, the newly constructed community health center began its arduous task of attempting to treat about 4.000 adults and children for the first 12 months and consequently increase the number as the years progress. This is approximately 15-20 residents a day, 6-days a week. As we provide free health care to the people, we will also provide them with skills and knowledge to avoid and prevent diseases and to be able to live healthy lives in the best way possible given their dire situation. Smokey Tours also provides a livelihood to community trained health care workers who would otherwise be peeling garlic for a living and earning a measly PhP 60 a day.




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      Why Insurances through JoHo

      Why Insurances through JoHo

      • Specialized: in emigration, work, internships, study and travel abroad.

      • Service: JoHo offers multiple travel insurances by multiple companies. Thanks to JoHo's extensive experience, it can offer support in case of problems with insurers, as well as advice and fast and personal handling.

      • Safe: JoHo is recognized as a trustworthy intermediary for insurances.

      • Social: by purchasing an insurance through JoHo you provide a talented student in The Philippines with health insurance

      Why Should You Take Out A Travel Insurance?

      • The chance of getting injured or ill is generally higher than when you would have stayed at home. The medical care you will need can be very expensive, even more so if you are treated in a private clinic.

      • If you have to fly back because of family circumstances, the flights might be more expensive than your original flight because you have to fly on short notice.

      • You might have to deal with the damage, loss or theft of your luggage.

      • In case of emergency it can be difficult to figure out what to do. A good travel insurance will have an assistance team on standby for you 24/7 and will be able to tell you what steps to take.      

      Why Should You Specifically Take Out A Travel Insurance For A Long Trip Abroad?

      • Often regular travel or health insurances only cover trips for a maximum number of days (for example 60, 90 or 180 days). 

      • Depending on your home country, your health insurance might not offer any coverage for treatment abroad.

      • During a long trip you might consider specific activities, like paid work or volunteering. Regular travel insurances often don’t cover these kind of activities. The same goes for adventurous/ hazardous sports like skydiving, scubadiving and bungee jumping.

      More on why to use JoHo

      • JoHo is one of the few organisations  where you can directly purchase a comprehensive range of foreign insurances from a variety of insurers. As with our other products and services, we believe that you should be able to choose between the best, the most cost effective and the most specialised insurance.

      • JoHo offers various possibilities from combining insurances to assisting in transferring from one insurer to another.

      • When you purchase an insurance policy through JoHo, you will not pay more than if you had purchased it directly from the insurer. Sometimes (through special collective agreements) you will even pay less.

      • JoHo offers support with problems that may arise with the insurer. Sometimes disagreement with claims, cancellation notice or insurance premiums can occur. In this situation it helps if you have the assistance of an organisation who has an established relationship with the insurer.