Our Bowen journey in the Philippines

This blog post is paraphrased from an original article written by BTA Instructor Tina Price, printed in Bowen Hands, The Journal of The Bowen Therapy Academy of Australia, in March 2014.

“It all started on the 8th November, when Typhoon Yolanda hit Tacloban in the Philippines.

My husband Hayden and I decided to make a donation of money, but within minutes I said,

‘You know what? I want to help with my hands.’

‘What are you talking about?’ Hayden asked.

‘Bowen,’ I replied.

And it went from there.

I changed my mind several times over the next few days. A third world country had never been on my bucket list, but tappings in my ear persuaded me I had to go.

Fellow instructor Jane Murphy spoke to me a week later to see what was happening in my life, and when I told her of Hayden & my intentions, she jumped at the chance to join us. I then contacted Rita Hart-Smith who gave me a couple of contacts, as did Julie Williams (a fellow Bowen therapist in Queensland.)

We arrived January 7th. No time wasted, we were off to Jose Fabella Mission and met many of the cyclone victims: families, people on their own having lost every member of their family and their homes, even one little girl who’d lost both of her parents. It was heart breaking, but smiles were still freely given to our band of three from Aussie land. Children and adults came up, held our hands and welcomed us. Then it was down to organising a room to work from – beds, chairs, linen etc. This was not an easy task as supplies were few & far between, but rusty, wonky beds were obtained, and mattresses borrowed from the residents.

Next was the job of organising clients. They arrived in batches of six, followed by children and others all keen to see what this was all about. We began by taking a history of each person. There were some harrowing stories, with tears from both cyclone survivors and us. We were so pleased to be helping in our small Bowen way, and the appreciation was quite overwhelming. We saw sad, broken people become positive, happy and calm. We noticed that most of the discomfort came from the mid to upper back, next and shoulders. Almost all had headaches, even the children, such was the depth of their grief.

Exhausted, but elated we ended our day and planned to return the next day.

Day 3 at Jose Fabella saw us greeted by happy, grateful temporary residents who were keen for more Bowen therapy. We had to gently tell them they needed to wait 5 days. Our next lot of keen clients arrived immediately wanting what their friends had experienced. It was another full day of exciting and positive results through the amazing power of Bowen therapy. People seemed to have a profound postural realignment and correction after each treatment. They appeared to stand taller. Faces were brighter and lighter in expression. It was as if they had taken years off their age. Bowen therapy, along with our loving care and attention gave them a purpose and renewed hope for a brighter future. Our encouragement and enthusiasm seemed to rub off on these devastated people. ”

Tina and Jane spent a total of 3 weeks in the Philippines, also visiting Villamor Air Base in Pasay City, Shiphrah birthing centre & orphanage, Nazareth birthing home, and Consuela Foundation. They offered their ears, their hands & their hearts to so many.

This journey for Jane, Hayden and I has been a time of many mixed emotions. We were able to take our hands and hearts using Tom Bowen’s amazing gift. We laughed, we cried, we got angry, we were happy, we were sad, we questioned… but throughout everything we marvelled at the resilience and strength of these people who have lost so much, who were so grateful we had thought of them. The smiles of the many homeless children was all the thanks we needed.

Tina is returning to the Philippines in late October 2014, and is looking for Bowen therapists to join her.

You can contact her here.

Please share!

Categories Personal stories | Tags: , , , | Posted on April 30, 2014

3 Comments

  1. by Tony Manders

    On May 1, 2014

    Good work Tina!! We’ll done to you all. T .M

  2. by Zarah Mercado

    On August 31, 2014

    Hello Ms. Tina,

    I am a Bowen student of Rita Hart-Smith from the Philippines. I would like to join you when you return to our country. Thank you for all your help.

  3. by Administrator

    On September 1, 2014

    Hi Zarah, thanks for your reply. Please feel free to email Tina directly – you can contact her here.

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