The Philippines boasts that they are within the top 10 largest nations on Facebook. I am constantly amazed at how nearly every Filipino I know, has a Facebook account; yet few own their own computer or have regular internet access.
From my home in Odiongan, Romblon, Philippines communication back to the U.S. usually means spending the afternoon sitting in a small café in town with free wifi. Some afternoons seem to last forever as I wait for webpages to load, however on one particularly fast internet day we bridged the 12-hour time difference and my Filipino host family was able to skype with my American family. Ironically, Jean met Jean as both my mothers share the same name.
Filipinos are no stranger to long distance relationships. Many have loved ones working abroad for several years at a time in places like Saudi Arabia and Singapore, in order to send money home and support their families. Facebook Messenger is the easiest means of communication for these long distance families.
Viber and What’s App have also transformed communication for Peace Corps volunteers. These iPhone apps allow free texts and calls through wifi to any phone number worldwide granted the recipient also has the application. So feel free to download the app and place a call to the Philippines!