MANILA, Philippines – Vice President-elect Leni Robredo on Thursday, June 16, hailed parents of out-of-school children who successfully completed the Kariton Klasrum program of the Department of Education (DepEd).
"'Yung mensahe ko, para sa mga magulang. Isa din pong pasasalamat at pagbibigay-pugay sa inyong lahat...sa pagbibigay 'nyo po ng halaga sa edukasyon ng inyong mga anak," Robredo told parents of 1,267 Kariton Klasrum completers during the program's culminating activity at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.
(My message is for the parents. This is a thanksgiving and a tribute to all of you for valuing the education of your children.)
She commended the parents' determination to find even small opportunities for the sake of their children.
"Malaki po ang kahulugan nito para mabigyan ng pag-asa hindi lamang po 'yung mga anak 'nyo, pero mabigyan ng pag-asa 'yung ating bayan, na mayroong mga kagaya 'nyo na kahit maraming limitasyon sa buhay, patuloy pa ring nangangarap," she added.
(This means a lot in order to give hope not only to your children, but also to the country, because there are still people like you who continue to dream despite your limitations in life.)
Robredo: Edukasyon ang nagbibigay liwanag sa kadiliman pic.twitter.com/0Oa43OtKc3 — Jee Y. Geronimo (@jeegeronimo) June 16, 2016
Thursday's batch of completers from Metro Manila is the largest batch so far, according to DepEd Undersecretary Mario Deriquito.
The department partnered with CNN Hero awardee Efren Peñaflorida for the nationwide expansion of his Kariton classroom for street children.
As of 2015, Metro Manila already has 59 Kariton Klasrum sites that cater to hard-to-reach learners and out-of-school children youth aged 5 to 14.
For 24 meetings, the bridge program employs an alternative delivery mode of instruction that aims to get children back to school. (READ: Final MDG report: Literacy up, but 57M kids still out of school)
The city of Manila recorded the most number of completers (300), followed by Pasay (160). Below is the breakdown for the rest of Metro Manila:
Deriquito said a total of 1,631 children have joined the program. Of Thursday's completers, 743 have already enrolled in formal schools.
Robredo, who was the guest at Thursday's event, thanked DepEd and the social welfare department for giving meaning to the dreams of the children who completed the program. (READ: Out-of-school kids bolstered by education reforms, CCTs)
VP-elect Leni Robredo w/ secretaries Dinky Soliman & Armin Luistro for DepEd's Kariton Klasrum culminating activity pic.twitter.com/M1NlPR4Dqi — Jee Y. Geronimo (@jeegeronimo) June 16, 2016
She also thanked Peñaflorida for inspiring Filipinos to be heroes in their own ways.
"Palagi po nating sinasabi, 'pag parati lang nasa kadiliman, parating may pagkatakot. Pero 'yung edukasyon 'nyo 'yung nagbibigay ng liwanag, na 'pag nabigyan na ng liwanag 'yung kaunting kadiliman, hindi na magiging madilim kailanman," she added.
(We always say, if we stay in the dark, there will always be fear. But your education gives light, and when there's light, darkness will cease.) – Rappler.com
Jee is part of Rappler's Central Desk, handling most of the world, science, and environment stories on the site. She enjoys listening to podcasts and K-pop, watching Asian dramas, and running long distances. She hopes to visit Israel someday to retrace the steps of her Savior.