BDO Foundation and Bancnet build classrooms in Marawi

Like so many dedicated educators in public schools across the country, the teachers of Nanapun Elementary School in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur want to give their pupils high-quality education in an environment conducive to learning. Unfortunately, the sad state of the school's old, damaged and dilapidated classrooms made the teachers' task difficult. The Marawi siege, which devastated the city for months, made their job even more challenging. 

The teachers of Nanapun hoped and prayed that somehow their school's classrooms will be repaired. Their need for better classrooms gained more significance as the schoolchildren who evacuated ground zero of the siege transferred to Nanapun. The teachers' prayers were answered when BDO Foundation and BancNet, the Philippines' leading electronic payments and ATM network, selected Nanapun as a recipient of a much needed donation. 

BDO Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of BDO Unibank, and Bancnet funded and constructed a two-storey, four-classroom school building in Nanapun Elementary School. The structure was turned over to local government leaders, school administrators and local officials of the Department of Education (DepEd) in inaugural ceremonies led by BDO Foundation president Mario Deriquito, BDO Foundation program director Rose Espinosa and Bancnet consultant Jasmin Bunag. 

The new building was graciously accepted by the teachers, DepEd Marawi assistant schools division superintendent Anna Zenaida Unte, city councilor Aleem Nassif Marangit and Nanapun Elementary School principal Noronisa Dipatuan. 

"Finally, our prayers were answered," the principal said. "We are blessed to be a beneficiary of BDO Foundation. Words are not enough to express how happy we are now that we have a new school building. I would like to thank BDO Foundation, BancNet and other people who made this project a reality." 

The school new building--which was furnished with toilets, blackboards, fans, desks for teachers and chairs for students--is expected to benefit more than 300 pupils affected by the Marawi siege, which disrupted classes for several months and forced students and teachers to evacuate. 

The project is the latest BDO Foundation initiative aimed at helping rebuild war-torn city. The foundation mounted humanitarian missions and made donations for the benefit of thousands of evacuees, military operatives, police personnel and schoolchildren affected by the fighting and humanitarian crisis. BDO Foundation also donated storybooks and school supplies to hundreds of schoolchildren in the city. 

The corporate citizenship initiative is in line with the foundation's disaster response advocacy and rehabilitation program in areas affected by natural disasters or armed conflict. It contributes to the efforts of DepEd, one of the member agencies of Task Force Bangon Marawi, to rehabilitate public schools in the wake of the fighting that ensued last year between government forces and a militant group. 

Nanapun Elementary School was identified by BDO Foundation as a recipient of a new school building after site inspections in Marawi City conducted with the support of the BDO Iligan-Del Pilar branch.