Sun Life Foundation Boosts Education Initiatives

Amid the economic challenges and the shift to online learning prompted by the pandemic,  Sun Life Financial-Philippines Foundation, Inc. (Sun Life Foundation) is boosting its  education-related initiatives to empower Filipino students and teachers in these crucial  times.  

“The economic impact, the closure of schools, and the rapid adoption of a new learning  system have increased the pressure upon Filipino students and teachers, putting many of  them at a disadvantage,” says Alex Narciso, President of Sun Life of Canada (Philippines), Inc.  and Sun Life Foundation. “By increasing our efforts related to education, we hope to alleviate  the difficulties that our fellow Filipinos are experiencing as we all work together to overcome  this crisis. This is just part of our commitment to be the Filipino’s lifetime partner as we all  rise together to build a stronger nation.”    

Supporting 125 scholars in Cebu  

One of these programs is a comprehensive educational scholarship program for 125  elementary and high school students in the municipalities of Minglanilla, Alegria, and  Daanbantayan in the province of Cebu.  

The program, initiated with non-governmental humanitarian organization Children of Asia,  was launched in 2020 as part of Sun Life Philippines’ 125th anniversary. 

Apart from the scholarship program, career orientations were likewise held to help the  students choose the right career path, as well as supplementary courses like soft skills  training to prepare them for higher education.  

As a holistic program, the project’s goals do not end with the child’s education. It also looks  after the child-beneficiary’s health and physical welfare by providing cash assistance for food  and medical needs. On top of these, the program also includes support for the psychological,  emotional, and even child protection to keep the children protected from malicious online  content and individuals.   

Easing public school teachers’ difficulties in the new normal  

Sun Life Foundation also joined forces with AHA! Learning Center in organizing the Tulong  Eskwela, a program designed to empower public school teachers as the mode of education  shifts from face-to-face to online classes.  

Tulong Eskwela is a text-based program that assists public school teachers in creating virtual  classrooms that bolster DepEd’s learning packets, guides schools in working with parents in  co-creating more authentic assessments, and assists students in developing positive study  

habits. The program also creates an ecosystem of stakeholders that can form community based learning and funding opportunities for public schools as well as its students.  

“In these difficult times, unity and compassion will go a long way in helping others cope with  the situation,” Mr. Narciso said. “We thank our partner organizations for their support in  these endeavors. Moreover, Sun Life Foundation will continue to explore ways that we can  be a ray of sunshine to our fellow Filipinos.”