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Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation Inc., Expands Educational Support to Pag-Asa Island in the West Philippine Sea; Receives Recognition from DepEd Secretary Sara Duterte for ALS Initiatives

In an endeavor to extend educational opportunities to remote areas, and true to its commitment to foster inclusive education despite various obstacles, the Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation, Inc. (CLFI), together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines Western Command (AFP WESCOM), has recently expanded its reach to Pag-Asa Island in the West Philippine Sea on February 25, 2024. This move aims to provide teaching tools and IT equipment to make quality education more accessible and meaningful for residents of the island, contributing to the holistic development of its community.

Pag-Asa Island, situated in the disputed Spratly Archipelago, has faced various challenges, including limited educational resources due to its remoteness. Recognizing this need, CLFI has courageously stepped in to bridge the gap by offering educational support and initiatives tailored to the island’s unique circumstances.

Present in the turnover of donation items were CLFI’s Executive Director Jonathan D. Batangan, AFP WESCOM Vice Admiral Alberto Carlos, Commander of Naval Forces Reserve Captain Norman  Biola, Chief of Staff Commander 21st Naval Group Commander Marie Paul de Luna and LGU representatives who received donation items such as laptop, printers, smart TV, external hard drive, paper supplies, among others.

The impact of CLFI’s efforts has not gone unnoticed, as Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary and Vice President Sara Z. Duterte expressed her appreciation for CLFI’s commitment to quality and accessible education. Secretary Duterte commended CLFI during the recently concluded DepEd Partners’ Appreciation and Recognition held at GSIS Theater for its ALS initiatives, emphasizing the importance of such programs in empowering underserved communities and promoting lifelong learning. CLFI was recognized for its efforts to partner with over 155 elementary and high schools nationwide for promoting alternative education.

“As we extend our educational support to Pag-Asa Island in the West Philippine Sea through our ALS initiatives, we reaffirm our commitment to fostering accessible learning opportunities for all Filipinos, regardless of geographical boundaries. The recognition from DepEd Secretary Sara Duterte serves as a testament to the impact of our efforts, driving us further in our mission to empower communities through education.” – Jean Henri Lhuillier, President and CEO of Cebuana Lhuillier

The event, convened last February 20 at the GSIS Theater in Pasay City, served as a platform to acknowledge the significant contributions of DepEd partners in advancing educational goals. It was attended by 173 key stakeholders, including government officials, educators, and representatives from partner organizations, and receiving the award on behalf of CLFI was Institutional Programs Head Caesar “Levis” Navarro.

CLFI’s educational initiatives also encompass the ALS Teachers’ and Learners’ Summit, Brigada Eskwela support, the National ALS Teachers Awards (NALSTAR) and collaboration with the Literacy Coordinating Council for the National Literacy Awards since 2013. Moreover, CLFI is in talks with the DepEd to recognize institutions of higher learning and LGUs for promoting innovative financial literacy initiatives through the Vice President Sara Duterte Awards for Financial Literacy.

As CLFI continues its mission to promote inclusive education, its initiatives on Pag-Asa Island stand as a beacon of hope, showcasing the transformative power of education in even the most challenging environments. With steadfast dedication and unwavering support, CLFI remains committed to building a better future for all through inclusive education.

“As we expand our educational support to Pag-Asa Island through our ALS initiatives, we are deeply honored to receive recognition from DepEd Secretary Sara Duterte. This acknowledgment fuels our passion to continue empowering underserved communities through accessible education. We remain steadfast in our commitment to creating opportunities for lifelong learning and socio-economic advancement for all.” – Jonathan Batangan, CLFI President


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