In mid-March 2017, the children of Langpas and Commander Bara Elementary Schools in Sulu Province in war zones of Muslim Mindanao, Philippines are showing marked improvement in their attendance, health conditions and classroom performances. "They are still benefitting from the Asia America initiative daily MASS FEEDING PROGRAM," says Indanan South School District Supervisor Samoore L. "It has been six months since Professor Albert M. Santoli Asia America initiative president began generously to expand funds for the program's continuous implementation in all 18 of our District's Elementary schools. The positive results of the partnership between our school administrators and faculties, volunteer parents and the humble but hard working AAI have been far beyond what anyone could have hoped for. This cooperation is an extension of our Tausug tribal cultural tradition of communities working together for the common good." After 50 years of armed conflict and dire poverty, cooperative efforts between peoples of various religious beliefs and cultures is making a profound difference to make education a fun component of peace building.
The Sulu water, nutrtition and academic excellence program was a direct product of AAI's rebuilding experience in areas detroyed by mega storms in the central Visayas region. The process of integrating clean water, school gardens, daily lunches cooked by voilunteer Moms and Dads and the rebuilding of libraries in dozens of schools n Christian Visayas and Muslim Visayas remains the program's hallmark. "The AAI inter-disciplinary strategy began in mid-2014 in areas of Panay Island in Visayas region that were destroyed by the Super Typhoon Haiyan," recalls AAI Visayas coordinator Nurse Faith. At the height of program in 2016 we have fed 2,000 children 4 meals per week -- or 8,000 meals per week -- at 5 pesos per child [10 cents US] of fresh foods locally grown in big pots of soups and stewsd plus rice or noodles for less than $1,000 US total per week, largely from donors through GlobalGiving. Parents, who consdidered it a matter of dignity to not take charity added the other half of the cost." Within one school year the rate of post-typhoon malutrition decreased from close to 80 percent to under 10 percent in AAI served communities. Daily school attendance has increased to close to 100 percent due to the dxel,icious home-cooked meals, and classroom performance and test scores improved off-the-charts. Elmentary school principal, Luz R. observes, "Out of tragedy we found new hope and built our confidence for success."
We look towartd the 2017-18 School year as a time of hope and progress in both Christian and Muslim communities that had once lost their most basic human needs. We are grateful to all GlobalGiving donors whose kindness has been the fuel for our success.
"Moms to the Rescue" daily school lunch program
lunchtime at Langpas Elementary, Indanan
School Garden at Bunot Elementary
Rainwater Catchment Tank at Mukammali ES
Learning is fun in Indanan South School District