In 1984 well meaning business colleagues helped establish a hamper and rice feeding program that would provide a community of Informal Settlers in Paranaque with two weeks of food to see them over the Christmas period. See January 2009 News Letter for details on 2008 Christmas Appeal Program.
We recognized in 2006 that apart from providing food to this small community that EDUCATION was also a major priority.
It is a sad historical fact that many well-meaning institutions successfully raise money from donations and unilaterally decide how to expend these funds by deciding what they think is required to alleviate the plight of the impoverished. Few, if any, bother to ask the community what it is that they think that they need.
In researching the establishment of a Charity Foundation we sought the assistance of a number of organizations and were grateful when Rotary International Australia took an interest in our proposition and took the time to listen to what we had achieved to-date and what we had planned for the Charity Foundation. A number of Australian Rotarians, as an aside to their business trips into the Philippines, did take the trouble to visit our informal settlers and talk with the occupants. Of course they would be grateful for any donations such as food, clothing and better living conditions, but the two things that they desired most was first, that their children could receive the education that they had been denied, and secondly, for they, themselves, to have the opportunity to learn a skill that would enable them to earn a decent wage. These two things would mean that even if they were destined to remain poor, at least their children would have the opportunity to break out into the wider and more affluent world.
For these people, and their children to receive an education will, for many, remain a dream. Although the Philippine Constitution mandates that every child will receive free education, the facts are that currently the government cannot fulfill this mandate. Currently, the Philippines has a shortfall of over 20,000 classrooms and 51,000 teachers.
It has taken 3 years to establish the Cararoo Foundation Inc. along the way we have spent time learning on how to establish a Foundation that will not only provide food, but also get involved in projects such as school sponsorship programs, building schools and generally having a major focus on education.
We recognize that this is a long term project and we have taken the time to research and put in place a board who are committed to providing a better and stronger education system.
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