Manobo children of Manobo Village in Sitio Biao
There is a Manobo village in Municipality of Palimbang, Sultan Kudarat. The village of Manobo is in the top of the mountain, there are 17 kilometers going up from the National Highway. They are illiterate people; you can even say that they are blind. The children cannot go to school because of the walking distance and most of all the discrimination to their tribes. They always encounter the bad treatment; they don’t even feel that they are human because of the discrimination of other tribes.
Their lives changed when they meet one foundation who help them to have education. Their chieftain Duma Bonifacio, want literacy to his tribes, because they always encountered people keep on lie them. The chieftain wants education for the young generation of his tribe, because he doesn’t want illiterate children. When they have a change to put a school in their place they are very happy. They helped each other to build a simple classroom for their children. When the class started not only the children whose send to school, also the parents.
The students are from five to fourteen years old, and came from different mountains. Some are still walking with a distance of three to four kilometers from home to school. There are students riding a horse going and back home. They were sending to school even without taking a bath, no sleepers and wearing dirty clothes. Since, they want to learn the teachers don’t mind the images of their student’s s long as they understand the lesson they have. Some of them are bringing gallons going to school and when they send back home they are getting water from the spring.
Seven years old child still in kindergarten.
After two years of schooling the students can already read, write, and count. They can even speak and understand Tagalog, and memorizing poems and songs. Despite that the teachers are lacks of teaching materials the students are learning. What they have is the simple way of searching knowledge because the things they have are not enough. Even their classroom is empty, you cannot even see some learning materials for the children, but still they continue to learn. The teacher are volunteers no salary to receive, they even spend their own money for the needs of their students. They are not professionally teachers but they trying their best to teach the children of their tribes.
If you asking the students about their dreams in lives, all of them answered that they want to become a professional teachers, police, and some other profession. Somebody answered teachers because they also want to help their tribes for the future. The lives of the people there is very touching in heart, they even said that the Government has already forgot them.
You can see that the children are very interesting in their studies. Even that they don’t have the quality of education, the important are they will learn and they not become an illiterate people.