Security Bank Foundation inaugurated and formally turned over an 8 classroom, 2 storey school building to Pres. Manuel A. Roxas Memorial School South and SPED in Roxas City, Capiz last October 8, 2014. This classrooms donation for Roxas City, Capiz is part of the Foundation’s rehabilitation initiative for communities affected by the Super Typhoon Yolanda last November 2013.
The ceremonial ribbon cutting for the school building donation was led by Vice Mayor Ronnie Dadivas, Asst. Superintendent Renato Ballesteros, Mr. Bryan Argos from the Office of the City Mayor and School Principals Dr. Nerissa Resente and Ms. Virginia Abalan together with Ateneo de Manila University Vice President for Social Involvement Atty. Jaime Hofilena, SBFI Chairman Rafael F. Simpao, Jr. and Trustee/Corporate Secretary Melissa R. Aquino, Security Bank Area Head for Western and Eastern Visayas Proceso Berino and Security Bank Roxas City Branch Sales Office Joan Buensalido.
The school was one of the oldest elementary schools in the province, and the only elementary school in the province with a program for students with special education needs. According to the OIC and Principal Dr. Nerissa Resente, the SPED students have been using an old and abandoned 2 storey building of the Department of Education Division Office. This old school building was even rendered unsafe for use of the SPED students and the teachers after Super Typhoon Yolanda last November 2013. “With the old school building, we were always worried about the children, particularly the visually impaired, using the rickety stair case. We are very happy that Security Bank Foundation offered to build a new school building for these children. The children will now have a much safer learning place. I hope you could have seen the first day that the children used the new classrooms. Everyone was so happy with their new classrooms. You could even see our deaf and mute children making the two thumbs up”, shares Dr. Resente.
In his letter to the Foundation explaining his absence to the October 8 event, DepEd Division Superintendent Miguel Mac Aposin thanked the Foundation for building and donating a school building for the students of Pres. Manuel A. Roxas Memorial School South and SPED, and described the school building donation as “an imposing monument of love and generosity from the people who care for the education of the children of Roxas City. It is also a testament telling us that we are not alone in our cause, and serves as an inspiration for us to continue our work and to never give up hope. We are very grateful for the generous school building donation of Security Bank Foundation. It will help us fulfill and transform the hopes and dreams of our children”.
In his speech read by his representative during the event, the Hon. Mayor Angel Alan Celino shared that “almost a year ago, the children lost all their hope to continue their education when the Super Typhoon Yolanda destroyed their classrooms. But now, the children have something to hope and to look forward to because of their new classrooms. The school building donation of Security Bank Foundation is not just a gift today but is a gift for a lifetime for our tomorrow’s children who will be building the city in the future”.
No one is happier than the SBFI Program Manager Mel Vigo-Cordova, who hails from Roxas City, Capiz, for the Foundation’s generous gift to the SPED students of her hometown. “Of all the classrooms projects we have ever done, the one in Roxas City has always been my favourite and tops my best practices list. Doing the classrooms project with the LGU and DepEd partners of Roxas City has been smooth-sailing for me and the Foundation. The project gave me a sense of pride and fulfilment because I was part of the organization that helped my very own hometown”, she explains.
Another person who is also very happy with the school building donation was a former Security Bank employee assigned to the first SBC Roxas City branch in the 1990s, Ms. Virna Liza Dy, and who is now a SPED teacher of Pres. Manuel A. Roxas Memorial School South and SPED for nine (9) years. Ms. Dy expressed, “I feel proud to have been part of a company that is now helping the children in Roxas City. It was good to see my former bosses, Mr. Simpao and Ms. Melissa”.
This year, the Security Bank Foundation is building seventy-eight (78) classrooms for kindergarten, elementary and high school students for fourteen (14) public schools in Roxas City (Capiz), Mandaue City (Cebu), Tagbilaran City (Bohol), Tacloban City and Ormoc City (Leyte), Sta Rosa City (Laguna), Lipa City (Batangas), Bacolod City, and Silay City. Twelve (12) of these classrooms will be turned over before end of the December 2014, while the remaining sixty-six (66) classrooms are expected to be completed for turn over to the public school beneficiaries by second quarter of 2015.
Since the start of the project, Security Bank Foundation has provided funding for one hundred ninety-nine (199) classrooms for fifty-two (52) public school beneficiaries in twenty-five (25) cities and municipalities nationwide. An estimated 15,000-18,000 students will benefit from these classrooms every school year.