Project e-skwelaJUAN beneficiaries received cellphone donations to adapt in the New Normal in Education
Laraw sa Isla, a local community of youth volunteers who entered into partnership with Makesense re_action, SK Federation of the Municipality of San Francisco, AIESEC, IEEE UP Diliman Student Branch, and Inquirer, initiated a donation drive to extend help to the families in San Francisco who are in need of gadgets for communication. These families need to constantly communicate with the teachers to ensure better learning experience amidst the pandemic and with the adaptation of distance learning modalities in education.
Project e-skwelaJUAN was created with the vision to help bridge the gap in giving equal opportunities to every child and to help ensure that no Filipino learner will be left behind. With the help of the aforementioned partners in reaching a wider audience, the organization was able to raise a sum of Php 98, 487.
A total of 26 keypad phones and 20 smartphones were distributed to families who have at least two learners in the household, who live away from the school, and who do not have cellphones to communicate with the teachers. Cellphones now play a vital role in education as it becomes the main channel for information dissemination, follow-up, and feedbacking of learner’s progress. The cellular phones were distributed on October 17, 2020 at the Barangay Northern Poblacion Covered Court which was attended by the Laraw sa Isla youth volunteers, SK Federation officials, teachers from the different schools, and the beneficiaries. The responsibilities of the beneficiaries were thoroughly discussed during the event to ensure that the donated items will be put to good use.
One of the beneficiaries is Vitaliano Mahilum, a father of seven learners – one of which has hearing impairment and is in a special education class. He plants vegetables and sells “puto balanghoy” – a delicacy made of cassava, for a living. “It is really challenging for them to interpret sign language because although his son who has special needs knows about sign language, his parents don’t”, Herber Cabangal Tampus, the SPEd teacher explained.
The initiative was made successful by the joint efforts of the youth volunteers and partners, and with the generosity of the sponsors and donors who all believed that every child deserves equal opportunities and access to quality education even in this time of pandemic.