Rotary Club of Manila Kalaw Leads Balik Eskwela and Book Donation Drive 

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PP Myra Joy C Trott

September is Basic Education and Literacy Month for Rotary International. In line with this, the Rotary Club of Manila Kalaw is launching a book donation drive to support students undergoing online and modular schooling. Due to the current situation we are in right now-the Covid 19 pandemic has changed tremendously the dynamics of education and the club in its humble initiative will attempt to fill in the gaps and lack in public schools. 

The target beneficiary of 200 books is for Barangay Malaya Elementary School in Rosario, Batangas who also have more or less 200 students. The club members have already started collecting books from their own homes and call-in relatives and friends to support this Book Donation Drive. A book distribution will be scheduled this month of September to target school beneficiaries. 

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Pres. Judith Landicho also joined forces with the SK Chairman in her local community whose initiative of “Balik Eskwela” was successfully conducted last August 8 by donating 3 kilos each of rice and school supplies for students and residents  of Brgy Malaya, Rosario, Batangas.

The club is doing these projects to support this important Rotary’s Area of Focus –  Basic Education and Literacy. We know that basic education and literacy are essential for reducing poverty, improving health, encouraging community and economic development, and promoting peace. 

Consider these facts as relayed by Rotary International in its website

  • If all women completed primary education, there would be 66% fewer maternal deaths.
  • A child born to a mother who can read is 50% more likely to survive past the age of five.
  • If all students in low-income countries left school with basic reading skills, 171 million people could be lifted out of poverty, which would be equivalent to a 12% cut in world poverty.

Although the world is making good progress in this area according to a 2014 United Nations Millennium Development Goals progress report, literacy rates among adults and youths are on the rise and the gender gap in literacy is narrowing. But pressing global needs remain:

  • 58 million children worldwide are out of school.
  • Even after four years of primary schooling, as many as 250 million children cannot read and write.
  • 781 million adults are illiterate.

Knowing these facts, the club supports activities and training to improve education for all children and literacy for children and adults.