From school to villages: Stories of compassion PART 1

It is said that the future starts in school. Teachers are considered great influencers of the children’s future. But beyond that, teachers resonate love and compassion to the community especially when adversities occur.

One of them is March Ane Songcuya-Carlos, a Senior High School Teacher 2 at Manuel B. Guiñez Sr. National High School, Banaybanay District in Davao Oriental. She is a widow with two children.

On the first week of the community quarantine, March Ane, together with her mom and sisters, initiated in sewing 100 masks to be given for free to the front liners in the Municipality of Banaybanay. She donated cash assistance to the Municipal Information Office to be used in charity works. Aside from that, she also prepared snacks to those volunteers who partake in the distribution of food packs and gave assorted biscuits and 42 packs of bangus to 20 barangay health workers and 22 barangay tanods.

Her generosity focuses not only to the front liners, but also to families who are in need in her community. In fact, she adopted 30 households of low-income earners and aided their daily food consumption through food packs with variety of items distributed every week.

In order for her to sustain this benevolent endeavors, she initiated a fundraising activity for a cause. She bakes cake and sells them; part of the profit will be for her food pack donations. Despite her meager salary, she allocates part of it without hesitation.

“I cannot do this alone. Along with me in these endeavors is Feb Anne, my older sister, and our Almighty God who always surprises me with things that I think I can’t do,” March Ane said.

Another good Samaritan is Myrna P. Yu, the school head of Cabadiangan Elementary School in Lupon, Davao Oriental who pledged to help the community to rise from the effects of COVID-19.

She appropriated a portion of her March salary in buying sacks of rice, groceries, fruits, vegetables, and fishes and delivered them to the struggling individuals in her neighborhood.

Among the recipients, with whom she is taking care of every week, are a family whose wife has suffered from leukemia, those who have PUM and PUI parents subject to 14-day home quarantine, and those fatherless learners.

She even sacrificed her personal tradition and devotion when she took her time in the barangay relief goods distribution as a front liner during Holy Week.

Another principal, Iryhn E. Petalcorin of Salvacion Elementary School in Panabo City, walked an extra mile. Before the COVID-19 outbreak, she apportioned “baon to two volunteer teachers, Warren M. Edrozo and Darex Nucal, while the Teachers’ League provides for their fare.

All teachers from the school showed compassion thru the Spare and Share Project, and gave these volunteer teachers grocery items and an ample amount of cash that could sustain them up to the end of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ). This random act generated more than 40K. The teachers also went out to the communities to share relief goods.

But what’s surprising and amazing is how the act of generosity turned into a cycle. While others were hoarding, Warren and Darex wholeheartedly shared their food packs to the two school security guards, 10 barangay frontlines, four utility workers, 10 vendors, and 50 parents of the school.

Just like them and other educators in the world who are securing brighter future for our children, their sacrifices and contributions in these trying times prove that every small act of kindness can make a big difference.

This shows that teachers’ compassion and love are not limited in the four corners of the classroom but beyond borderless villages. (With texts/reports from Mark Fil L. Tagsip, Mary Grace M. Arabilla, & Jackyma G. Mancao; contribution through Neil Michael de Asis)