We need your help.
“The sky has no limits, neither do I.” Usain Bolt
Last month, we got a chance to meet the Basalco family from Guadalupe, Cebu City, Philippines. The Basalcos live in one of the most poverty-stricken areas of the world where there are little to no opportunities to find a way out.
Overall, there has been slow economic growth in the country for the past 40 years due to a high increase in population, weakness in employment generation and poverty remains at an all-time high because people cannot attain an education.
We met Christine Basalco, a school teacher by profession who recently lost her job due to Covid-19. Her husband, Dennis works at a low-paying security job, earning about $200AUD a month working long hours 7 days a week. Together they have two daughters, Ysaa and KD who are both primary school-aged.
For some time now, Dennis has been the only earner in his family. They have all had to experience hardships because his earnings are unfortunately not enough to support his and his family’s basic requirements. Due to the economic conditions in the area and lack of skills to find better jobs, the couple was having an extremely hard time making ends meet.
They ration out their food and go without hot meals on many days simply because they cannot afford it. They live in a broken, run-down home where the roof could collapse any day. They don’t always have access to clean running water so they wake up at midnight to store water when it comes.
Despite all their hardships, Christine and Dennis realize the importance of education and wish to send their daughters, Ysaa and KD to school.
“We know how much our girls want to learn and to become something one day,” said Christine, their mother. “They know well that education is the only key to a better life.”
“I used to have a great IQ just like Ysaa,” smiled Dennis. “I dreamed of being a lawyer one day and even got into law school. But, it wasn’t in the stars for me. My parents could not afford to pay for my education and I ended up finding other lower-paying jobs to make ends meet. I want something different for my daughters.”
Ysaa and KD have been high academic achievers since they have started school. They have a passion for learning and really want to excel in school. After facing such financial constraints, their parents were faced with a tough decision of whether to keep their daughters enrolled in school.
Both the girls are so fond of learning that they were heartbroken and cried at the thought of not being able to go to school any longer. At times, the parents had to borrow or beg others for money just so they could keep the girls in school.
Fortunately, ELMA (Emotional Literacy Mindfulness Academy) reached out to the Basalco family to help them when they needed it most. As a community leader and child activist, Tenille Bentley (founder of ELMA) understands that when parents are living in poverty, all their income and focus is going towards the survival of their children. Education is not seen as a priority when you are worried about getting your next meal. It’s next to impossible to pay for books, uniforms and school fees so these kids are forced to drop out of school. Thus, the cycle of poverty continues.
ELMA has managed to raise enough money for Ysaa and KD to be able to continue their education this year. This has paid for the girls’ school fees, uniforms, books, a stable internet connection and a laptop so they can do their school work. Their generous contribution has allowed the girls to remain focused on improving their lives in the future.
Progress and Achievements
The girls have been progressing extremely well in school this year. Yssa’s progress report for her studies shows that she won second place Buwan ng Wika in her Filipino subject.
She received a certificate as her prize. Her parents were so proud of her achievements as she did not expect at all to win. She has lots of performance tasks and quizzes to complete, so she sleeps late at night and sometimes wakes up at 4 a.m. to complete her work.
KD also just finished her 1st quarter mastery test and her scores were good. She received some passing scores and some were even perfect.
Both Ysaa and KD get plenty of tasks and homework from school but they manage it well. They are given ample time so they are able to return the assignments and it has been a huge help now that they were able to get a laptop from the raised funds.
How can you help?
We need more support in raising funds to cover each year of schooling at $1500aud per year. This will help continue the kids’ education and break that horrible cycle of poverty.
We can all work together as a community to get this family out of poverty and back onto their feet once again.
With your support and contributions:
- We can help Ysaa and KD continue getting an education and secure a better future for themselves.
- We can help Dennis and Christine gain more skills to get better jobs; so they have better chances to support their family.
- We can support them to get healthy food, a safer home and better living conditions.
When you help sponsor these children Ysaa and KD, you will have the joy of knowing that you are not only profoundly impacting their lives but the lives of their family and community.
Your $50 will go a very long way and your donation will go directly to the family in need – 100% of this goes directly to the family. You will receive monthly updates on the progress of the family and see the direct impact you are having on them.
One step truly goes a long way so, please take this step and reach out to help our little angels achieve their dreams.
If this story touched your heart and you’re willing to lend a helping hand, please contact emotionalliteracyacademy.com/community for more information.
What You Can Do Next?
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ABOUT THE FOUNDER
Internationally Recognised Emotional Literacy & Mindfulness Expert Tenille Bentley is the founder of The Emotional Literacy and Mindfulness Academy and the author of the children’s emotional literacy books with Jazzy and Pinky and The Energy Ball. Giving children a wonderful introduction to understanding their emotions and what to do with them.
Tenille has been featured on Channel 9 News and other major outlets. Her work has been recognized in the community by The Governor of Western Australia, The Prime Minister of Australia and Australian Financial Review.
As a child, she experienced severe anxiety and emotional traumas as well as bullying which left her feeling isolated and unable to understand why she was feeling the way she did. As an adult, this impacted her ability to make healthy decisions because she didn’t have the tools to understand her emotions.
This is why she is passionate about equipping parents with the tools to support their children to make better decisions in life and healthy ones to help support and create a balanced home life.