In its sixth year, the Sarangani Big Brother (SBB) celebrates its successes last May 9, 2013 at Maitum Municipal Gym, Maitum Sarangani Province. The said event is attended by the volunteers, teachers and different stakeholders who help this program become successful.
“Sarangani Big Brother is a 15-day summer volunteer reading program designed to assist the Department of Education (DepEd) in eliminating frustration and instructional readers among incoming Grade II and III pupils. Frustration readers are those who can identify words but have inadequate or no comprehension at all. This program aims to: 1) Reduce the number of frustration reader by a 15-day reading program for at risks schoolchildren. 2) To develop a strengthened relationship between schools and its partners in community. 3) To raise awareness in the community that education is a community concern. 4) To instill the values of volunteerism among youth. 5) To provide educational enrichment in an enjoyable atmosphere for pupils. SBB is a project of Quality Education for Sarangani Today (QUEST) – a program established by Sarangani Governor Miguel Rene A. Dominguez in 2007 to improve access of ALL CHILDREN in the province to quality education.”
SBB is participated by youth volunteers, teachers, local and provincial government of Sarangani, Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Federation, Department of Education (DepEd), Alcantara Foundation and other NGOs, and private partners.
Hon. Elsie Lucille R. Perrett, the municipal mayor of Maitum, gives her welcome address to all participants of SBB. She said that SBB is one of the tools in quality education for poverty alleviation and economic prosperity.
Mr. Isagani S. Dela Cruz, Schools Division Superintendent, expresses his gratitude to all volunteers and teachers of SBB. He said that SBB is one of the programs that break the cycle of poverty as experience by the Sarangans in the province.
Ms. Cecile Dominguez, head of the Alcantara Foundation, also thanks the volunteers and stakeholders who help SBB. She gives a brief background about the program – how it was started and conceptualized. She said that every year SBB keeps getting better. From the experiences of the previous seasons, it keeps learning and improving as time goes by.
Private partners such as Sagittarius Mines Inc. (SMI) are also present in the event. Ms. Elvie Grace Ganchero, Regional & Provincial Affairs Manager of SMI, appreciates and thanks this program. She said that despite all the issues encountered by mining companies like SMI, education is the unifying factor to fight against poverty. SMI and SBB has same mission to fight this problem through education. Since 2008, SMI is a good supporter of SBB and to the provincial government of Sarangani.
Ms. Gang Badoy Capati, RockEd founder, gives her inspirational message to the participants. She shares the story of the whale shark – her personal encounter of a whale shark and her misperception about it. She points out the importance of nation building. Even a small contribution or service to the community helps build the nation.
Ms. Annalie Tolentino Edday, the Program Manager of QUEST, also expresses her thank you to all who support the program most especially to Gov. Dominguez. She is in tears while sharing her stories about herself and SBB. She said that being a Blaan is not a hindrance to success. For her Gov. Dominguez serve as her hero in helping reach her dreams and the dreams of the students of Sarangani.
Gov. Miguel Rene A. Dominguez also thanks all volunteers and stakeholders who participated in this program. He said that in progress we go along together, no one left behind. Though there is a new administration this year, he confirms that there is Season 7 of this program.
The culmination also awarded the youth volunteers and teachers who shared their time in making this program an epic success. Through their efforts this program is replicated by other places in the country like Palawan and Cebu.
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