livelihood

Why Do Filipinos Have Many Children?

Jomar's income goes to his parentsIn the Philippines, the middle-class and rich have only a few children (4 is already considered many) while those living below poverty-line have as many as a dozen children.  This is one of the challenges we face in the Philippines.

If you go around our slum areas and ask the people there why they have many children, one of the common answers will be, “So that when we grow old, our many children will take care of us.”

That is a Filipino mentality that has been around long before I was born.  And it continues to be the mentality among our Filipino poor today.

Obviously, the big loophole to this mentality is, what about the present while the parents are still young and the children even younger?  How can a couple living on P100.-P300. a day (US$2.-6.) support 8-12 children?