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Malasakit drives Huawei, DICT, PLDT-Smart Foundation, enabling Palawan’s alternative learning system

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PLDT Inc.’s social outreach arm PLDT-Smart Foundation (PSF) facilitated Huawei Technologies Philippines and Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) MIMAROPA’s donation of a School-in-a-Bag (SIAB) to the Department of Education (DepEd) in Palawan. This initiative helps boost DepEd’s campaign to utilize technology for education in far-flung communities in the country.

Supporting DepEd Palawan’s Boosting Access Literacy Service through Alternative Learning System (BALSA) Project, Huawei, DICT, and PSF turned over a School-in-a-Bag that will benefit teachers and students in the learning centers of the division.

“We remain committed towards public service by addressing the digital divide and educational needs of the unserved and underserved areas, particularly for the community of Rabor, Palawan and adjacent areas. With the support of Huawei Philippines and PLDT-Smart Foundation, the School-in-a-Bag can help us deliver accessible ICT services to even the remotest communities and bring inclusive community development to the countryside,” said DICT Regional Director for Regions IV-A (CALABARZON) and IV-B (MIMAROPA) Cheryl Ortega.

The School-in-a-Bag is a portable digital classroom that brings learning to last-mile schools and supports the Department of Education’s efforts in improving education. As the flagship education program of PLDT and Smart, each School-in-a-Bag contains a laptop for the teacher, tablets preloaded with #LearnSmart apps making use of the students’ mother tongue and other learning content that can be accessed even while offline including USAID’s All Children Reading eResource, and a Smart LTE pocket WiFi kit which teachers can use to download additional educational materials.

“Our group’s core value of malasakit has inspired us to reach out to various sectors in communities, especially the underserved, the underprivileged and the vulnerable. We are glad to partner with like-minded organizations like Huawei, as well as the DICT, who help us ensure that no learner is left behind,” said Esther O. Santos, PSF President.

In 2021, Huawei sponsored 13 SIABs which were deployed to areas hit by super typhoon Odette. Huawei also donated an additional 20 SIAB packages for 2022 in celebration of Huawei’s 20th year of business in the Philippines.

“Part of our mission at Huawei is to help the Filipinos get quality digital education by providing world class devices to teachers and students through innovative solutions like SIAB. We are grateful to the DICT, DepEd, and PSF for being our partners in building a digital society in the Philippines,” said Daniel Guo, Huawei Philippines COO.

SIAB is an integral part of PLDT and Smart’s broader commitment to help the country achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goal 4: Inclusive Quality Education.|-BNN/pr

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