HomeNewsOver 18,000 children in MIndanao received education support

Over 18,000 children in MIndanao received education support

Save the Children Philippines has announced the conclusion of a two-year initiative aimed at providing education and child protection support to vulnerable children in conflict-affected areas.

In a statement, the child rights group said over 18,000 vulnerable children in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao have benefited from the EU-funded Project SINDAO.

Over 93 percent of children, under the program “Return to Learning Program” or RtL, who suffered interrupted learning due to conflicts have exhibited improvements in literacy, reading, and numeracy skills. 

“The RtL sessions served as an “after school” or extension classes made even more interesting with game-based activities and interactive sessions,” the group said. 

Save the Children said the project has also seen remarkable success in preventing dropouts with a “96 percent retention rate” in schools through the program’s customized modules and summer tutorial sessions.

The project also assisted non-formal education such as in Torils and Madrasah schools where “most of the students are orphans due to armed conflicts”. 

“We sometimes eat just twice a day since we don’t have enough supply. This affects our studies. Our parents also cannot send us money,” said Saifun, a 14-year-old student in Darul Aitam, Baloi. 

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While both the government and some civil society groups provide interventions in conflict-stricken areas in the southern Philippines, funding remains a concern for many schools, according to Salahudin, a teacher in Darul Aitam.

“We don’t often receive assistance from the government and other humanitarian organizations. Our children cannot even afford slippers. [Schools] do not have school supplies and teachers are lacking in skills,” she said. 

The project was spearheaded by Save the Children Philippines in collaboration with Care PH, ACCORD, Inc, and Geneva Call.

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