As schools all over the country prepare to shift online amid the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, so have the prerequisite materials for at-home-students proven to be inaccessible for many. After all, not everyone has the extra money to suddenly spend on laptops and a stable internet connection, especially with the current quarantine restricting our workforce as well.
Having seen this evident struggle on her personal feed, Diane Reyes came up with Ayuda Pang Eskwela, a Facebook group that seeks to help Filipinos cope with the new realities brought about by the coronavirus. More importantly, the group connects students in need of financial support with reliable donors who can aid them in procuring laptops and other gadgets required for distance learning. “We envision this group to be the spark that lights a movement of hope, kindness, and freedom to pursue dreams. It’s an opportunity for the often neglected and disadvantaged students to keep their right to education amidst adversity,” Diane tells Preview.
In order to ensure that every student calling for help is accounted for, Diane, along with the group’s other volunteer moderators, make sure to interview each beneficiary directly to further understand their needs. Established just last August 1, the project quickly demonstrated the good hearts of Filipinos as they were able to provide aid to 327 students in just 13 days, amounting to a total of over P1.3 million.
That said, there’s a lot more ground to cover from here on out. With 700 pending posts from more kids looking for financial support, Ayuda Pang Eskwela hopes that more donors join in on the initiative. “For the donors and supporters, joining our community is a chance to be a small part of someone else’s success story. A chance to contribute to shaping a future that is bigger than themselves. This is a community of good people who want to do good things,” Diane urges.
Aside from providing material support, the group hopes to branch out moving forward in terms of offering more long-term solutions to students. This includes coaching and mentoring sessions “to provide young individuals [with] different tools and information that will equip them in their personal and professional growth.”
Donors and students interested in taking part may read up on the group’s rules and reminders below.
For students and parents