(Pikit, North Cotabato/June 20, 2015). In the Muslim month of the Ramadhan, COPERS pursues its advocacy for the wellbeing of children in their home communities by beefing up library resources for the floating schools in Datu Montawal, Maguindanao and in Rajah Muda Elementary School in Pikit, North Cotabato.
Quezon City-based C&E Publishing House donated assorted elementary English, Math, and Science books. Colonel Restituto Padilla, Jr., Deputy Chief of the OJ7 of the Armed Forces of the Philippines facilitated the air transport of the books to Davao City. These were delivered to COPERS by the 5th Civil Relations Group personnel from Camp Panacan on June 17, 2015.
Informed of COPERS’ gratitude for the assistance, Padilla texted: “You are most welcome! Your AFP working for you!”
In 2006-07, Padilla served as the commander of the Philippine Air Force’s Tactical Operations Group-11 based in Davao. A 2010 recipient of the Ten Outstanding Philippine Soldiers (TOPS) award given by the Metrobank Foundation, Padilla partnered with COPERS in 2007 for the reforestation of portions of Sitio Bansil, Malabog, Paquibato District in Davao City, home community of UCEAC AA Dadong Gumatao.
The ADDU Grade School also donated five boxes of assorted used books for COPERS efforts in helping the schoolteachers foster reading among the young. It is hoped that when students find their early school experience enjoyable, they would spend more time in school, thus freeing their parents to undertake livelihood activities and housework as the families adjust to coming home from the evacuation centers.
ADDU 2015 Commencement speaker Mike Alon of the Kabacan-based Integrated Mindanaoan Association for Natives (IMAN) warmly received the donation of books. This is the third year that COPERS has facilitated book donations for the floating schools supported by IMAN in the portion of the Liguasan Marsh that flows by Datu Montawal, Maguindanao.