Black Pencil Project Reached Out To Manobo-Matigsalug of Bukidnon
Makati City - Philippines' Black Pencil Project reached Sisimon last May 27, 2012 in Kapalangan, San Fernando to deliver some 150 study kits, teachers kits and a school kit. A composite group of five volunteers lead by program director Mon Corpuz; travelled for 4 hours on habal-habal and crossed rivers for 3 times to fulfill the delivery of the kits aptly called School-In-A-Box; a new program introduced by the group this year.
Kapalangan is about 60 kilometers east of Valencia town and accessible thru a dirt road. Manobo-Matigsalug are one of the ethnic minorities of Northern Mindanao and inhabits the mountainous parts of Tigwa-Salug Valley.
The Matigsalug are the Bukidnon groups who are found in the Tigwa-Salug Valley in San Fernando, Bukidnon. "Matigsalug " is a term, which means "people along the River Salug". The Matigsalug men wear short tight-fitting pants that are of knee length and are hem and turbans for the head decorated with beads and fringed with goat's/horse's hair. The Matigsalug of Bukidnon have an approximate population of 146, 500.
Black Pencil Project is a grassroots, interest-based volunteer organization with core advocacies focused on the promotion of primary education in remote and indigenous communities in the Philippines. Through resources mobilization programs utilizing known collaborative consumption models, materials assistance like basic, start-up school kits are provided to select barrio schools during start of classes of each school year.
Primary Education, fundamentally is very significant in the public schools system because this is the time when children are taught to write, read and count. Children must be equipped with materials necessary to fuel their enthusiasm to go to school despite of the challenges said Mon Corpuz, program director.
The Department of Education institutionalized Kinder as compulsory requirement prior to Grade 1 this year and had been criticized due to the insufficiency of the program, infrastructure and teacher training.
Black Pencil Project focuses on early learners (Day Care, Grades 1 to 3), believing children must be enrolled at the right age on the right grade level to reach the maximum potentials of learning capacities.