Will there be another lucky 10 child laborers to receive scholarship grants? It was during the Project Angel Tree Donors’ Forum last year when EMS Components Assembly, Inc. partnered with DOLE IV-A Laguna Provincial Office in providing scholarship grants to ten child laborers from Bay, Laguna receiving quarterly allowance and annual school supplies. With 16 generous companies attending the activity on May 16, 2016, there’s a good chance that beneficiaries from Brgy. Concepcion, Pila, Laguna will be blessed with educational assistance.
One hopeful Sheena Marie Canalda, a grade 9 student from Brgy. Concepcion, was invited to share her story. A role model to her two siblings, Sheena helps her family sell their home-baked “pandesal” in the community every morning. By 11:00 a.m., she would have emptied her tray of bread for sale in the neighborhood.
Several companies showed interest in the life story of Sheena with company representatives raising questions on how they can help. Perhaps to gauge her eligibility for a possible grant, one of them asked how she is doing in school. Nonetheless, she will be among the beneficiaries of school supplies to be distributed on June 15, 2016 in celebration of the World Day Against Child Labor.
Many other children, just like Sheena, have their own child labor stories yet to be told. And, it is time to bring their stories to the right audience outside the community. DOLE Laguna is optimistic that these real-life tales of perseverance will not only merit listening ears but also charitable hearts.
Indeed, no child-beneficiary shall be left out in the Project Angel Tree with PD Milagros R. Mata as the lead-advocate in partnership with the Laguna Labor Management Council, Inc. She was represented by Ms. Nora T. Aguilar, Supervising LEO, in reaching out to companies for the gathering of support during the Donors’ Forum. After all, it is a great way to implement Corporate Social Responsibility in response to the mandate on the prevention and elimination of child labor incidence.
Participating companies had an orientation on R.A. 9231 (An Act Providing For The Elimination Of The Worst Forms Of Child Labor And. Affording Stronger Protection For The Working Child) and DOLE’s Child Labor Free Barangay Program conducted by Senior LEO Raymond R. Ramos. Also, there was a presentation of accomplishments in 2015 particularly the gift-giving activities mid-year and year-end.
More than the gathering and distribution of school supplies, it is the spirit of compassion and generosity illuminating the faces of children-beneficiaries that makes such an event meaningful.
RUDYBOY R. SINAY
DOLE Laguna Provincial Office
Article from DOLE CALABARZON website.