While on my trip in the Philippines, I visited a school where my cousin worked just to see what it was like. Comparing to the schools here in Australia, I could actually see a lot of differences.
Class sizes was one of the first thing I’ve noticed. There would’ve been about 40 or so children crammed in a small classroom space. There was not enough room to move around. It was also interesting that because of the large number of students in the school, students were only there from 7 in the morning until about lunch time. Then a second lot of students would start their school day from 12:30 until about 4 or 5 (I’m not 100% sure that this is accurate, but I know there are two school sessions).
Upon visiting the school library, I’ve noticed that the books were very old. At a glance, they looked like they were mostly curriculum books. Really old curriculum books. They were behind glass and looked as though they are rarely touched.
As soon as I returned to Australia, the first thing I did was go straight to a friend who worked as a school librarian and asked her if she could help me with a possible book drive. We were to collect old books that were still in good condition and donate them to the school I visited. I started purchasing some books as well, ready to be donated. It started off well, but kinda died down towards the middle of the year.
I’ve kept the books and resources that we collected, ready to be sent when the opportunity came up. I was meant to fly back to the Philippines at the bed of this year and deliver them in person. I may collect some more and try again next year.