Education as a Legacy
Filipino parents value education as one of the most important legacies they can impart to their children. They believe that a better education creates opportunities for a better future and will eventually lift them out of poverty. However, in places such as Balayan in the Philippines, the limited resources of many families often dictates that the basic needs of food and shelter are, by necessity, prioritised over education.
Engaging people to improve their own lives
TEN Foundations, founded by Belfast man Ian Campbell in 2012, quickly realised that although charity has a vital role in an area of such acute poverty, a sustainable programme that engages people to improve their own lives can be infinitely more effective than handouts and crucially provides an opportunity to restore the dignity of impoverished parents.
The TEN Foundations Livelihood Programme provides local mothers with the necessary skills and resources in order that they may provide for their own families and become self-sufficient.
The programme offers basic numeracy & literacy skills followed by intensive training in the use of an industrial sewing machine and all aspects of production from design, cutting and manufacture. Trainees initially learn their technical skills on the production of bags and accessories made from recycled materials including coffee bags, tetrapaks, drinking straws etc.
Creating Hope, Developing Ambition
Schoolbags for Success
As their skills develop they can then apply to work in the Ten Foundations project and earn a wage producing high-quality schoolbags. All bags are shipped to Northern Ireland and sold in retail outlets and online. Surpluses generated from this trading activity are distributed as disaster relief and emergency payments for vulnerable members of the Bayanihan community, school scholarships and life changing medical attention.
Economic Empowerment brings results
The TEN Foundations project now employs over 40 individuals and indirectly benefits 400 men, women and children.
This economic empowerment of women enables them to provide for their own family – procure food, install essentials such as water & electricity and concrete floors in their home and pay for their children’s education so as to break the cycle of poverty to which they have been born to.