Every Monday and Wednesday 4 of our collaborators take the jeepney, the local filipino public transport, after their classes at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila, to Parola, a sprawling slum area at the Pier District of Manila where thousands of families live in deplorable conditions.
After braving the traffic for hours in the heat and humidity, they arrive to a windowless chapel with a falling roof to wait for the children whom they teach Basic Education and English. With no fans still available and sweating profusely, the children run towards the Centre with a great excitement to learn. It clearly shows in their little faces that it is a day they have been waiting for – they are so eager to learn. It is a challenging task but the collaborators show diligence and patience with the children as they go through the lessons.
Learning and conversing in English, they build up confidence among these children, educating them in a positive way as they gradually become aware of their possibilities and passion for education.
Fr. Steven Ochieng