Living on an island with not much amenity is no longer such a hardship for Parent Teacher Association (PTA) president Reynold Porcino now that there is electricity to power lights for a better learning environment at San Agapito Elementary School in Isla Verde, Batangas.
His feeling of satisfaction is echoed by school head Norma Quidado of Liponpon Elementary School who, not too long ago, dismissed the thought of teaching children using visual aids via a DVD player simply as a pipe dream.
Porcino and Quidado can very well speak for the more than 7,000 residents of Isla Verde whose children had to endure darkness and the difficulties of not having electricity until One Meralco Foundation acted decisively to address the problem.
Only a few months after the solar panels were installed, the changes in the Isla Verde schools are tangible. For one, classes need not be cancelled during inclement weather since the rooms are well-lit, enabling teachers and students to go on with their work.
Teachers like Quidado are happy that they can now use educational videos to facilitate learning since students are more attentive when visual support comes into play. Before the solar panels were installed, they could only use these aids sparingly since they did not have enough money to buy crude to run the generator.
Since they can already access information through the Internet and TV, students of Isla Verde no longer lag behind their counterparts in mainland Batangas in terms of knowledge and now have a better sense of what is current.
Even on the administration side, school processes are made faster with computers churning needed data fast and information is made available to students promptly. There is no more need to go to the city to have test papers printed.
School head Jolly Luces of San Agustin Kanluran Elementary School noted a new sense of delight among students and even parents. ìMas excited na mag-aral ang mga bata. Pati mga magulang ay masayang masaya dahil sa pagbabago sa kanilang mga anak,î she said.
Many parents like Porcino are thankful that OMF and its partners have enabled the islandís residents, particularly the students, to enjoy the benefits of electricity and improve their lives.
ìBilang PTA president, nagpapasalamat ako sa OMF sa binigay nilang liwanag sa aming ekwelahan. Parang nasa city ang mga bata at hindi na pahuhuli kahit nasa isla sila. Napakalaking pagbabago, walang hanggan ang pasasalamat naming mga magulang sa pinagkaloob sa amin,î he said.
Quidado is likewise thankful because the dreams of teachers in Isla Verde like her suddenly became reality with solar-powered electricity brightening up not only their schools but their lives as well.
ìNoong nakaraan, parang pangarap lang ang magkaroon ng kuryente. Akala namin pang-bayan lang ang kuryente pero dahil sa OMF, naging totohanan na ang aming pangarap,ì she said.