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The Children of Inadan and The Few Good Men | Real Score in Mindanao





"The glow of happiness in their faces is the most authentic expression I have seen in my entire life..."


It was exactly a year ago in 2011 that I made a debut reaching out to the primary Manobo students of Inadan,  located seven kilometers by foot from the barangay proper of Magroyong.

Seeing these children in their most deprived condition particularly on the education aspect, is the most heartbreaking scene I have witnessed in years. 

I have the belief that all Filipino children, regardless of their origin and ethnicity, should have an equal access to the government provided services and distributed resources. But it is a sad truth that these services and resources seldom reach the remote  areas  particularly the tribal communities.

The Manobo Tribal Community in Sitio Inadan, survives the simplest way of living, adapting both modern and primitive ways of making it through the day by harvesting forest timber, (planted and natural grown tree species), being sold to multi-million plywood processing plants, for the consumption of the greater Filipino population. 

The sad part of this is that , most of the time, the children  are oblige to help in the extraction of the timber from the heart of the forest ; carrying it on their bare hardened shoulders and walking through a  15 kilometer  forest trail towards the collecting and loading sites along the national road.

Another painful fact about this is that, they produce timbers that are used in making papers, pencil etc., and yet these children don't have even a single pad to write on for their daily lessons in school. So the next time you throw a paper in the garbage bin , think of the children of Inadan!

With the release of the first article about the condition of the Inadan Children through this blog, a few donors expressed their sympathy by giving pledges of donations.  (See article: Inadan, the Land of Lumad, Manobo of San Miguel)

It was an overwhelming feedback that came to materialize a week ago after I received a communication from someone who wished not to be known, expressing his assistance by donating  few boxes of school supplies for the IP students. The transfer happened like a lightning bolt , without knowing it, boxes of school supplies and a little cash  were delivered  in front of my door.

Excited with this good news, I hurried to  sitio Inadan, informing the in-charged teachers and their Tribal Datu, that donated materials by an anonymous donor were arranged and  ready for distribution. I counted and equally divided by grade levels all the notebooks, paper pads, pencil and ball pen. With a little extra cash on hand I bought a handful of lollipops as I recall one child requesting for candy the next time I drop by.


Alerted by my visit, the children put  their best clothes on during the distribution of school materials. It was a gesture that I will forever treasure in my life. Even they have nothing much, they tried to be in their modest appearance though I prefer for them not to do it anymore for I know the fact that sometimes they come to school half naked because they don't have clothes to wear on.

The Manobo children who come to school usually with nothing on hand, were so happy receiving few notebooks, paper pads, pencil that were shared by 80 indigenous children from Grade 1-Grade 5 levels. It maybe few in our eyes but for them it's already a treasure that landed on their hands.

The glow of happiness in their faces is the most authentic expression I have ever seen in my entire life . No pretension and pure over flowing innocent emotion. And how I wish I could always maintain that light  feeling and keep them away from their usual burden they carry everyday. 

In response to the good deeds of the anonymous donor, the children expressed their appreciation by committing to come to school every day as much as possible. It was another blessed day that prayers and the call for bayanihan were answered by a few good men.


Next Project: First Ever Children Christmas Party in Inadan

I wish to call for your help for my next project. I wish  is to give the sitio a nice Children Christmas Party on December, 2012 as they never had a gathering celebrating Christmas just like any other children in school. Used  children clothes, bags, school materials, toys, slippers and anything that  whole-heartedly given are very much appreciated. You may send it through:

Mr. Ulyses Ravelo/ Engr. Melchor Lurcha
Teacher In-Charge, Primary School of Inadan
c/o Tina Central Elementary School
Brgy. Tina, San Miguel, Surigao del Sur
Philippines, 8301

or you may communicate/coordinate through email: love.mindanao@yahoo.com

Gallery:

Grade 1 to Grade 5 elementary students of Inadan


Student delighted with the gift they received 


Excited waiting to receive school supplies

Habal-habal , our transportation to reach the school

Children obliged to work by carrying timber coming from the forest instead of attending school





53 comments :

  1. Sad to say it's not only in this community but to many different rural areas not reached by the government services or is neglected, thankfully there are few people like you who cares about their plight.

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  2. true that there are more of them in the Philippines.if we could all start taking one community at a time then that would be a good start ... start with one and the next step will follow ... if we dont act with a simple deed then nothing will follow.

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  3. You have a good heart. Keep it up. Nice blog

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  4. This is such a great cause and it's admirable for you to reach out to people in Inadan. Good luck to your project.

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  5. A great act of helping a the school.There are still Filipinos like you and Anonymous who are willing to help others.God Bless you.

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  6. Your advocacy is so inspiring, i hope that public servants will also be like this. :D

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  7. Sir, continue ur mission for god's will, u will always survive!blessings for ur missionary works...go,go, saludo mi sa u!....

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  8. more power to your projects sir... from my side, my batchmates in high school are currently supporting a student to pursue high school, currently we have 2 students now and hopefully we could increase more next year....

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  9. Every time I see and hear this kind of situation, my heart bleeds knowing their status and yet I cannot do anything for them.

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  10. thank you for believing and continuing support :D

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  11. This is the reality, I am sure there are still other remote places in our country that has been deprived of educations, health and other services. We can help a few but not all of them..It is really sad to see this kind of situations. We can only wish and hope that the government can extend there help to this remote places........

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  12. but in reality many children cannot proceed in higher level because lack of resources like financial problem food and shelter and long distance traveled between villages through cities

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  13. I was also fortunate to check the state of the children (esp the indigenous) in rural areas. Last June, we visited a barangay somewhere in Panabo City to also deliver school supplies.

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  14. You're doing a lot of good in this world. Great job!

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  15. I commend you for such a kind act in distributing the school supplies to these children. It's true that most of these people cannot be fully supported by the government because of their remote location. But since we, private citizens, already know the situation of some of our brothers, I think it's best for us to act and help them in all the possible ways that
    we can.

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  16. Such a heartwarming and inspiring piece. When I read posts like this, I know there's still hope for the Philippines to be a better country for its people.


    This story reminds me of a CNN docu I saw about child labor in cocoa plantations in Africa. They harvest cocoa for big chocolate companies, but they have never seen nor tasted chocolate in their entire lives! It's quite the same with these kids who transport timber but not having wooden pencils.

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  17. Congratulations on what you're doing for them. Keep up the good work!

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  18. that is so sweet celebrating true Christmas.

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  19. Looking forward to hear more stories about the Inadans in Mindanao. ^_^

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  20. That was such a great deed! Whoever it was that donated those school supplies, thank you for giving these kids happiness :)

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  21. I love the idea of a Christmas Party for the kids.. i am sure that they will appreciate the time and the effort

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  22. Aww, bless their hearts! may the people like you be blessed more in helping these kids!!!

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  23. I hope your Christmas project would be successful. This would definitely boost their morale as they would need the festive atmosphere for a change from the difficulties in their daily life.

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  24. Congrats and God bless you. Hoping for a successful Inadan Christmas Party.

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  25. The government should give prioritize the education in our country. These children really wants to learn so hoping that the government has a good plan for them. Thanks to you, you have a good heart to help these children.

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  26. I admire you. nothing can really compare with the joy of being able to reach out to people especially those groups whose privileges seem to be forgotten by the government while they have the same needs and rights as with other people. and they are always the most authentic in nature.

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  27. Thanks for sharing. Equality if possible should be given to all.

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  28. It reminds my time in multi-teaching somewhere in a deprived school (due to its location). I brought school supplies because they didn't have one and they only walked kilometers on their feet and crossed rivers. Geez, it broke my heart.

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  29. I would love to help this very good cause, Dennis! Would it be ok to send a little monetary help instead? Just let me know..

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  30. in gods will and good luck to the project! may god bless you guys ! xx

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  31. Keep up the good work! I just wonder instead of Christmas party - not sure if they are already Christian, perhaps an alternative is to celebrate at the time of their festivities. Preservation of cultural integrity/identity is one of the concerns that volunteer workers should also consider in providing help to Indigenous communities especially children.

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  32. Children's faces can really melt one's heart. Kudos to your good works!

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  33. you are doing a great job! Hats-off to you for your inspiring work

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  34. God bless you and your good heart. May you always have good health to continue His works.

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  35. This is so touching..you have a good soul..I feel humbled by how kind a heart you have for the less fortunate..May Yahweh bless you abundantly because I know that these blessings will be paid forward.

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  36. Whenever I see my children waste any school materials, I always remind them that there are other children who don't have a single notebook or pencil. It is good you found a way to help the Manobo children. I'm sure this articles will encourage others to do the same.

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  37. Every Filipino should be given the proper services he or she needs. That's the general role and that's the basic task or a job a government should do. But it's very difficult for our government to do it.

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  38. You have great dedication to these children. More power to your journey with the KATUTUBO!

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  39. I love to see the smiling faces of children. They seem so happy and innocent. Good to know that there are wonderful people who donated for them :) .. Christmas party is a great idea.

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  40. You're a blessing to these children! Their smiles are precious! I hope your plan for December would materialize. More power. :)

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  41. You do your good works and are blessed a hundredfold. It saddens me looking at the picture how life can be so unfair. Thank you that that there are people like you who care enough to put words into action. God bless!

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  42. The happiness we get from helping people is priceless and I'm sure the people of Inadan are also happy for the help you have given them.

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  43. These children are luckier than those kids here in the city... they want to learn but some of the kids here in Manila don't even care to go to school.

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  44. I hope that more people will follow your footstep

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  45. my mother has a blood of being Manobo.. and somehow she told me a story their traditions when she was a child.. walking to the greenfields just to go to school..

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  46. I shared this to Special Education Philippines fan page

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  47. Thank you mam Noria . that put me in tears ....i am not the teacher ... am just a concerned citizen trying to reach out for these deprived community .. and hoping through this media am able to reach the hearts of other people to share whatever they can .. thank you very much mam :D

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  48. Seeing their small and frail bodies doing such heavy tasks pains me. For my birthday last year, it was also humbling to see kids wear their best clothes. Even if they didn't have much, you could see that they were really excited and grateful. Kudos to people like you who continue to be compassionate for people who are not much noticed. :)

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  49. Great initiative! You should seriously consider partnering up with Coca-Cola as they just built the 100th Little Red Schoolhouse in the Philippines. You two can achieve even greater things!

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  50. You have another inspiring story. By this time, all I can contribute is a moral support. ^_^

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  51. what you're doing is really admirable and i can just see the happy faces of the children - priceless...

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  52. I would like to help when whenI'm able na. Will get in touch with you..meantime, will just pray for You, the kids and the rest of the volunteers! God bless!

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