In its desire to help schoolchildren to have a clean, well-maintained and comfortable classroom during the opening of classes in June, the 1st Cavalry Squadron (Tagapanguna) Battalion, 1st Mechanized Infantry Division conducted “Brigada Eskwela” in Manlayag Elementary School last March 5 and 10 respectively.
Capt. Ronnie Halangdon, civil-military operations officer said Brigada Eskwela was an initiative of the unit designed to help teachers, parents and students in doing minor repairs and cleanup in the school in preparation for the start of the new school year. “This is also part of the enhanced Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) Bayanihan campaign of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP),” Halangdon added.
Halangdon said a squad of 1st Cavalry Squadron with its masonry and carpentry skills volunteered to make the school ready for the coming school year.
Asked why they implemented Brigada Eskwela early this March when it is usually held by the volunteers two weeks before the opening classes, Halangdon replied: “We did it in advance for we could no longer wait to see the schoolchildren attending classes with some of their chairs and tables are dilapidated.
“Naaawa kami sa mga bata na nag-aaral na galing pa sa kanilang malalayong bahay. Maraming bundok pa ang kanilang lalakarin bago nila maabot ang kanilang paaralan at sa pagpasok nila ang makikita nila ay ang mga depektibo nga lamesa, upuan at blackboard. Gusto namin na komportable ang kanilang pag-aaral habang nasa loob ng classroom,” Halangdon explained.
(We pity the schoolchildren who came all the way from faraway houses. They have to walk and climb several mountains before reaching their school and when they enter their classrooms, all they can see are defective tables, chairs and blackboards. We want them to feel comfortable inside their classrooms).
“This is the second time that we conducted Brigada Eskwela in public elementary schools. The first, was held in Navalan Elementary School. They are our adopted schools,” Halangdon disclosed.
Halangdon said the team repaired the chairs, tables and blackboards, cleaning the surroundings of the school and built a gate in the school.
Meanwhile, school principal Jessica Casio lauded the officers and men of 1st Cavalry Squadron (Tagapanguna) Battalion for doing the activity in her school saying that their efforts is a manifestation of their genuine concern not only for the schoolchildren but for the entire community as well.
“I am very thankful for the leadership of 1st Cavalry Squadron for giving their time and effort in realizing this activity,” Casio said.
“I thank them for choosing our school as their pilot area of their Bayanihan activities,” Casio said. She also revealed that these schoolchildren were the beneficiaries of the unit’s gift-giving activity dubbed “Love Drive Program” last Feb. 14.