Stories of Change

School visit triggers public service aspiration

 August 18, 2017    

Written by: Jose Manuel “Thirdy” Factura III


CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – Public service has been a part of my life since childhood. Through my parents, who were both staff members of the late Representative Victorico L. Chaves of the 2nd district of Misamis Oriental, I witnessed how public service was rendered above and beyond their call of duty. They would distribute food and gifts to people within the neighborhood and even do this out of their own pockets.


I hoped to one day be able to do the same.


I am currently a 4th year student leading the Community Development Students Society in Tagaloan Community College, and it was here when I first encountered CheckMySchool. We had a seminar on Knowledge and Experience Sharing in the Community and Sir Jonathan Mongcal was one of the resource speakers. He talked about social accountability and volunteerism, together with other CMS volunteers.


After listening to their inspiring stories, I decided to speak with Sir Jonathan further on his CMS experiences. I’ve done volunteer work for my fraternity ever since, but I knew what I just heard was something different. On that day, I and other community development and sociology students decided to join CheckMySchool.


As a CMS volunteer, my most memorable experience so far was our visit to Kiam-is Elementary School in Lumbia, Cagayan De Oro City. Traveling to the school was tough as it was located in a very remote area with poor road conditions, but the difficult journey was worth it. The supplies we distributed through the SaGIFT Aral project organized by CMS volunteers brought smiles and immense joy to the students of Kiam-is.


Photo: Thirdy with a student during a CMS visit

See story on SaGIFT Aral: An Educational Kit Distribution Project


My CheckMySchool experience has ignited in my heart the burning passion to help others, particularly students in public schools. Through my CMS work, I saw how difficult it is for students to study without the complete set of books they need for optimal learning. The government should work with other stakeholders in strengthening our public education system and allocating sufficient budget for books and other learning materials.


Edited by: Eric Michael Santos


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