MANILA, Philippines -- From P400 million in 2006, the Department of Education?s ?Adopt-a-School? Program last year received a record P4.05 billion, or more than a 900-percent increase, in donations from the private sector.
?That?s solid proof that the private sector has been responding well to our call for greater involvement in improving basic education,? said Education Secretary Secretary Jesli A. Lapus.
Lapus thanked the program?s benefactors even as he appealed for more partners.
The program?s 2007 figures surpassed the combined P2.09 billion in private sector contributions to the program from 2000 to 2006, Lapus said.
?For fiscal year 2007 alone, an estimated P141.3 billion was poured into the basic education sector, or 16 percent higher than what the national government had budgeted,? Lapus said in his State of Basic Education report.
Much of this amount came from the DepEd?s private and non-government partners under the Adopt-a-School program, he said.
The program, which is based on the principles of volunteerism and multiple partnerships for education, was launched in 2000 with the passage of Republic Act 8525.
The contributions went to the DepEd?s health and nutrition projects, technology support to education, the reading program, infrastructure, teachers? training and professional development, and direct assistance to students in public schools.
Angelico Mercader, the Adopt-a-School program?s officer-in-charge, said this year the aim is to ?aggressively mobilize resources for more responsive intervention and for the private sector to prioritize education in their corporate social responsibility efforts.?
The program?s 2007 partners included, among others, the following firms and non-government organizations:
Fortune Tobacco Corp., Allied Banking Corp., Jollibee Food Corp., McDonald?s, Smart Communications, Philip Morris, United Laboratories, Unionbank, Citibank, Deutsche Bank, Intel, SM Prime Holdings, Megaworld, D & L Industries,
Johnson & Johnson, Colgate-Palmolive Phils., Tan Yan Kee Foundation, Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce, San Miguel Foundation, Coca Cola Foundation, Ayala Foundation, Meralco Foundation,
GMA-Kapuso Foundation, ABS-CBN Foundation, Aboitiz Group Foundation, Rotary Club of Manila, La Salle Greenhills, Systems Technology Institute, Habitat for Humanity, and the United Nations Children?s Fund. Jerry E. Esplanada