Here’s our story. Follow our progress over the years, from small beginnings.
Jo and I decided, on a whim to visit Jo’s old school, she hadn’t seen it for over 30 years. Jo said it hadn’t changed and, sad to say, I quite believed her. The facilities were appalling, yet the standard of teaching was excellent and the enthusiasm from the children, absolutely fabulous. You just knew straight away, that something had to be done.
Our new classroom is finished inside and out and the official opening by our trustees is always a big day for us. This is the first classroom to have two toilets! [...] We now have over 80% of high school students in receipt of our scholarship benefits!
We had the largest number of boxes ever to unload when we arrived in the Philippines early in January. [...] When we arrived in the Philippines, we found they had been joined by the two boxes that hadn’t been delivered by the time we left the previous year!
The other big event was in starting three, almost simultaneous building projects. We had to press on with these right from the off, but we did manage to get all three completed, with the final inauguration taking place only a couple of days before we returned home.
The High school asked for extension side wings to the main covered area, so we got the materials and the work started. The students showed their appreciation. We put some more funds into sporting equipment.
By rearranging the room, we managed to squeeze 32 computer sets in, but that is now the limit! [...] We put a couple of ceilings in last year. This year we are planning to do some more, and also replace some of the galvanised sheets on the roof.
We put security bars and gates on one of the new classrooms and rebuilt a wall. This proved to be very beneficial when the local area flooded and the wall held the water back, saving the school from damage. we put the rest of the funds towards building a new classroom.
As ever, we managed to supply some more computers to both the schools. This always involves more benches being made and electrical wiring etc. Installation always takes a few days but it's always worth it when you see how well-received the gifts are.
Our original idea was to make two rooms available, one for the Elementary (junior) school, and one for the High (secondary) school. As the funds and resources materialised it became apparent that we could make a shared library in one of the new rooms.
First of all we bought some books. When we got home, we collected more and freighted them out. The project just got bigger, and our dreams for the schools with them. In January this year (2006) we decided to organise and fund a proper research/study facility for the kids.