Sunday, January 23, 2011
Here is the link to our Picasa Album during the signing ceremony for our recent partnership agreement with Mlang Pilot Elementary School and Dugong Elementary School. While there, I had the opportunity to meet with both our sponsored children and their parents. I am very pleased to inform you that of our 20 scholars, all except one are doing well in school. The exception is a bright Muslim boy, Rashed. Rashed’s teacher told me that the boy is constantly absent from class. His mother explained that Rashed has to miss classes from time to time because he must help his father earn money in the market. We asked the mother if she wants Rashed to finish school and she does, as Rashed very much likes to go to school and will be graduating from Grade VI. His principal is thinking how the school can also work to assist the boy. For instance, he could do some small jobs around the school for which he will be compensated such as feeding the chickens at the poultry project . This does not take so much of his time and is better than working in the market far from the school.
Another story of a mother truly touched me. She said she is very happy for the educational support that Wimler provides. Her husband is sick and so she has taken over his job as a cart-pusher. This is a heavy duty (in the Philippine context) for a woman as she needs all her energy to push the cart loaded with heavy items. The mother is very grateful to the support her daughter Joan receives from Wimler.
Children attending both the Dugong Elementary School (DES) and Mlang Pilot Elementary School (MPES) will soon benefit from a collaborative school-based poultry project. Construction of facilities at both locations will begin in February and will start with 300 egg-laying chickens apiece. Sponsorship for this initiative is being provided by the WIMLER Partnership for Social Progress with financial support from ETWA Netherlands. The project is envisioned as a means to generate income in support of the education of poor children and provide capital for improvements to the schools.
A signing ceremony was held on January 13th in Mlang, North Cotabato, to kick off the project. Cyrel Defensor, school principal of MPES, Mr. Rodrigo Vergara, school principal of DES, Mr. Joel Celestial, President PTA DES, and Mr. Abundio Generale, Jr., President PTA MPES were present to sign the partnership on behalf of their respective organizations. Under this agreement, DES will receive Ph 201,568.75, while MPES will receive 132,605.00 including further financial support from ETWA (Netherlands). Both DES and MPES contributed Ph 24,031 each as their local counterpart.
Leila Rispens-Noel, President and Co-founder of WIMLER, underlined the emphasis her organization has attached to the promotion of education and the development of local communities. “
Lack of education is one of the root causes of poverty. We have to support children who most need our help and see to it that no one is left behind,” she stated.
“However, it is only financial support that Wimler can provide with the help of our donors and sponsors. What is most important is the active involvement of parents and teachers to ensure that pupils will enjoy the full benefit of a school education. Parents must encourage their children to go to school regularly. These poultry projects can help us sustain that support,” she added.
“MPES and the PTA members are committed to make this project successful,” said Mr. Defensor. According to him, the project will substantially increase the educational assistance available for poor students.
Both schools have a number of pupils whose parents have no regular income. This means that they cannot save enough money to buy school supplies, new uniforms or pay miscellaneous school fees at the start of the academic year.
After signing the documents, a meeting was held in the presence of parents, school principal, and pupils to discuss the progress of the children and plans for the next school year.#