Lapus acknowledges SM Supermalls and other stakeholders for assistance to typhoon-hit schools

November 26, 2009 3:27 pm 

MANILA, Nov. 26 — Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Jesli Lapus on Thursday lauded SM Supermalls for “helping provide needed resources to typhoon-hit public schools still recovering from the damages wrought by the recent calamities.”

Some 1,600 benches were turned over to the department’s Adopt-A-School Program (ASP) in a recently held ceremony in the DepEd central office in Pasig City. ASP encourages private sector groups to work with DepEd in boosting government resources in education.

“This is a fine example of a private sector-led initiative working for our public schools,” said Lapus.

He noted, “This cooperation speaks of the 'bayanihan' spirit working to help our teachers and students recover from the catastrophe caused by the recent typhoons. We look forward to seeing more engagements between our schools and the private sector through Adopt-A-School.”

ASP executive director Mari Paul Soriano said, “We thank SM Supermalls for being one of our partners that immediately responded to the secretary’s call for more private sector donors to work with DepEd in helping bring the situation in our schools back to normal.”

More than 400 private sector individuals and companies have helped the department in the delivery of quality educational services to public schoolchildren since Adopt-A-School was relaunched by Lapus in 2006.

The massive support from the private sector has made Adopt-A-School the department’s second biggest resource generating mechanism next to the approved DepEd budget.

“What we have seen is Brigada Eskwela Plus in action – the community working to help our public schools year-round,” added Lapus.

Earlier, Lapus also thanked the department’s Adopt-A-School partners from the private sector who help public schools that were hit by typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng.

“This is bayanihan at work in our education system. What our donors have done is an example of active community participation in education, which will help our schoolchildren and teachers survive this crisis,” said Lapus.

National Bookstore Foundation donated school supplies among public schoolchildren, while the National Power Corporation (Napocor) donate materials and contribute manpower to help clean affected public schools.

Amway Philippines also donate cleansers and disinfectants, while public schoolchildren in some affected areas received school supplies from the Alfonso Yuchengco Foundation, Jollibee Foundation and UnionBank also help affected public schools, and many individuals have donated used books and cash for the victims of the typhoons.

Lapus noted, “The community – including the private sector – is our most important ally in rebuilding our schools. Everybody can do something to help our students and teachers recover from this calamity.”

To effectively align available private sector resources with the needs of typhoon-hit public schools, Lapus ordered the department’s Physical Facilities and Schools Engineering Division and the Adopt-A-School Program to closely monitor affected DepEd divisions and get the specific needs of typhoon-hit public schools.

By virtue of Republic Act 8525 – or the Adopt-A-School Law – the Adopt-A-School Program is a venue where the private sector can help bring the needed resources to public schools. In recognition of their goodwill, donors may avail themselves of 150 percent tax incentive.

More than 400 private sector individuals and companies have helped the department in the delivery of quality educational services to public schoolchildren since Adopt-A-School was relaunched by Lapus in 2006. (PNA)

FFC/HCT

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