facts about the fortune’s Children center:
- Grade-levels Served: First – twelfth grades
- Facility: The three-story building compromises a small kitchen area, two separate meeting areas, and a study area.
- Curriculum: Children learn to read and write in both English and Tagalog, with a major focus on formal writing in both languages. Older children tutor the younger students after school as well.
- Academic Year: The school year typically begins in early June and ends in late March, with a short break in December.
- Medical Care: The center organizes medical clinics for the children once or twice each year.
- Chores: Children help clean the center daily.
- Programs: The center has a feeding program which provides meals before and after school. The center also provides basic computer training to older children so they can continue their education outside of the classroom setting at home.
The Philippines comprise a vast island nation in southeast Asia. This archipelago of more than 7,000 islands boasts sandy beaches, towering mountains and volcanoes, tropical rainforests and an incredible wealth of natural resources and biodiversity. Humans have called these islands home for thousands of years, predating historic records. Today, the Philippines incorporate a staggering number of languages, ethnic groups, religions and cultures. Despite its status as an emerging market, however, nearly half of all Filipinos still earn less than $2 a day. Adequate sanitation, access to healthcare and access to potable water are still daily challenges in the country, which is also prone to typhoons, earthquakes and volcanic activity. The city of Marikina, considered part of metropolitan Manila (the Philippines’ capital), is no exception to these maladies.
Here, in Marikina’s Fortune neighborhood, where our affiliated site the Fortune’s Children Center is located, most residents rent modest homes — typically little more than shacks constructed from scrap wood and corrugated metal sheets. Eight to twelve family members often share these dwellings. Tragically, hunger, malnutrition, health issues and lack of sufficient clothing often cause children to miss school or drop out altogether. For this reason, the Fortune’s Children Center serves as a beacon of hope. Established by the Damayan at Tiago Foundation, this center serves as a site for our sponsorship program, where children are fed each day and are provided with tutoring support in the afternoons, in addition to being provided with basic needs on a monthly basis.
Facts about the Philippines:
- Population: 109 million (2022)
- Languages Spoken: Filipino (official, based on Tagalog) and English (official)
- Unemployment Rate: 4.2% (2022)
- Poverty Rate: 18.1% (2022)