Sarangani is home to many Indigenous tribes who used to live in the hills and mountains around Sarangani. Over the years, they moved closer to towns and cities, but despite this, they are still in relatively remote locations. One of the places these tribes have settled in is Maasim, Sarangani.
Gemma Rose Masaig is a Grade 8 student at Fye Falel Indigenous People School. In her arts class, she would make vases and bouquets of flowers. Art is her favorite subject. Inspired by her teachers, she herself dreams of becoming a teacher someday.
“Gusto ko po maging teacher. Kasi, gaya po nung ginawa nila sir pati ni ma’am, gusto ko po magturo sa mga bata kung paano po rumispeto sa kapwa, kung paano po tumulong - yun po ang naging inspirasyon ko.”
But reaching for her dreams has proven to be quite difficult. Because for Gemma and the rest of the students in Fye Falel, basic education has become difficult to attain. The school due to lack of classrooms, have forced the students and teachers to conduct their lessons in crowded classrooms. And sometimes, students like Gemma have to study elsewhere.
“Nahihirapan po kami pumasok noon kasi po pag umuulan hindi na kami nagkakasya. Sa stairs kami nag-aaral. Mainit sa loob at saka masikip. So nahihirapan kami.” This made the lives of both teachers and students difficult, and has hampered the students access to basic education.
In 2017, HOPE, together with The Groovy Food Company, built a new, spacious and brightly lit classroom. Today, Gemma can simply walk to school because her classroom is very close to where she lives. She is now more inspired and motivated to go to school.
“Gusto ko talagang pumasok kasi gusto ko doon sa loob kasi komportable.”
Now that Gemma Rose has her future in her hands, her dreams go beyond just thinking about herself - but for her classmates and parents too.
“I dream that we can all finish school together. And together we can help build and improve our town and our country. My dream for my parents is to be able to help them out.”
You can help build more public school classrooms around the country and help us bring the classroom deficit down.
Visit our GIVE HOPE page to send your donations today.