Art is the way forward for GFF Helps Philippines

Online Storytelling

Kids have been going to school now, and most of them do not have classes in the afternoon. Our schedule is befitting this situation, and we still maintain the number of attendees. The presentation was changed a little as activities are constructed in a way that they will exhibit their critical thinking. We skipped games and formulated activities based on real-life situations. They spend most of their time thinking and reasoning. Most of the kids are in a higher level already and they liked the activities. The younger ones are coping with the changes but still showed great understanding. We are happy to hone the minds of these kids into thinking critically.

“Gives students the power to express themselves through multi-literacy modes.”

Reading Workshop & Mobile Library

“Enhancing the opportunity of access to library resources.”
“Engaging students in authentic reading experiences”

We continue to visit the students from Capitan Tazan Memorial Primary School located in Ugsod Village in the town of Banga. These kids are related to each other and live in the same neighborhood. The opening of classes already started, and these kids were also going to school for a half-day class. In the afternoon, they spent time with us with activities to enhance their vocabulary. We saw how they improved every day, and this motivated us to collaborate with schools. We noticed that most students in the Elementary level especially in the lower section, are non-readers. The Government implemented Remedial Classes for these kids under their assigned teachers. We understand the work that teachers do every day and how they struggle to juggle all. We sent a Letter of Intent to the School Principal of Banga Elementary School to volunteer as Remedial Class Teachers for a specific section. It was approved and we will begin in the later part of this month. We are always happy with the trust that the schools have in us.

“Enhancing the opportunity of access to library resources.”
“Engaging students in authentic reading experiences”

Group Workshop: Arts and Crafts Day

The Group Workshop was inspired by the Summer Program initiated and facilitated by Willyn and Michael last 2019. It was held in different towns in Banga, Aklan. When the pandemic started, everything was halted. We decided to do it again but in smaller groups. The Episode 2 of this Group Workshop is Arts and Crafts Day. We invited kids from the Town of Kalibo and the Town of Banga. The Flores Family lent us a wide and comfortable place for free in their place in Banga, Aklan. The kids participated in making different crafts made from scratch materials. They also watched informative videos about the different seasons and made a drawing of their favorite ones. We also had a reading workshop outside the Bermuda grass where we sat and read books. The kids showed exemplary skills in comprehension and craftsmanship despite most of them being levels 0-1.

Joe FisherArt is the way forward for GFF Helps Philippines
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Storytelling Gala Session

It was during the pandemic that the storytelling session had begun and it was these stories that got us together. All respective representatives and volunteers got together and they started narrative storytelling sessions online in their respective countries. It has been two years that the pandemic has lessened but the relationships that we made during those times has got us really good bonds with children. Some of them stayed and some of them grew together with us. It was in the month of August that ‘A storytelling Gala session’ was organised where all the four countries came together along with their children and they shared stories of their culture wearing their traditional dresses. This was a perfect example of unity in diversity and they learned each other’s food, dress and songs.

GFF Helps India has been an active collaborator with the SOGG Learning centres of Bong, Chibbo & Pudung. They have been working in tandem on various thematic areas. Particularly in the field of education, GFF Helps India and GFF Helps Nepal have been organizing collaborative story telling session that targets the children of SOGG Learning centres since 2020. The main aim was to engage the children during the lockdown, when schools had been closed for a prolonged period of time. Other goals of the session have been to spark children’s imagination and stimulate curiosity, to help them build confidence and develop oratory & listening skills.

GFF Philippines have conducted storytelling sessions for their Philippino children and their sessions are always moral based and ends with an activity so that the children can remember the moral of the story. The children were very keen and excited to meet children from other countries.

GFF Sri Lanka is gradually going into the foray of telling stories through their English for Village Programme or Mobile Library. In the GFF HELPS Sri Lanka team, there were six students and they performed various kinds of performances. They wore Sri Lankan National costumes. Students have sung the Sinhalese song” Mage Ratata Dhalada Himi Saranai” Song (My country is the shadow of Dalada) and One student performed storytelling of the country song, another one delivered a speech about Srilanka, and there was a brief introduction about Sri Lanka. Finally one student played a Sri Lankan traditional music by using the traditional instrument in Sri Lanka.

On the 27th of August, a Grand Story Telling session was held online for the children of India, Nepal, Philippines and Sri Lanka, at the behest and guidance of a well known story teller- Ms. Minket. The aim of the session was to help children explore and understand the cultures of other participating countries, to inculcate the spirit of community and to help bring about positive influence inside the participant’s heart. 

The participants presented aspects of their respective cultures. Team India, represented by the children of Chibbo Learning centre performed a mime (guided by Mr. Raymond- an assistant teacher of SOGG centre Chibbo), a dance and made a short and succinct presentation on India. Mr. Jimmy, Ms. Priya & Ms. Vanessa (Freight System), Mr. Saom attended the session and . The curiosity filled and the occasion was graced by Sir James Keir, Ms. Priya and Ms. Vanessa (Freight System). Mr. Saom opened the session and gave a brief introduction about the storytelling while Miss Minket Lepcha moderated the session. They all appreciated the children’s efforts. The session was full of fan fare and excitement. As a marker of appreciation, the children were given a certificate of participation. 

Sessions like story telling have been a useful marker to assess the children’s progress and over the years, the children have learned about team work, polished their presentation skills, language skills which was evident on the grand story telling session. We hope to organize similar events for the children that will lead to their intellectual growth and help them develop social skills. 




Joe FisherStorytelling Gala Session
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One step at a time, to empower the younger generations from community schools into becoming conscious of their emotional health. The assembly on Children’s Mental Health took place on 26th August, 2022 the audience present at the site were the entire school students and staff from Bal Kumari school. These students who are in-fact beneficiaries of ESL- educational project under GFF Helps Nepal, took the lead on sharing awareness on Children’s Mental Health and why it matters? The assembly aimed at improving the students in both public speaking and pronunciation in English Language. While, supporting the overall objective to spread knowledge Students from class VI perform an assembly on Children’s Mental Health Matters on mental health with the entire school. The use of posters illustrating imageries such as: An Ice-Berg (on the surface and within water displays actions and emotions respectively); two minds one filled with a beautiful garden , while the other filled with thunderstorms; posters that shows a cartoon boy with a message saying: It is okay to be sad, anxious, worried, confused, angry; the final poster shared the message on using words that are loving, healing, kind, caring and life giving. The ESL (English as a Second Language) and mental health sessions are inter-related focusing on both of GFF Helps Nepal -Education and Emotional Learning Projects.

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Eco Brick- Environmental Project with Schools and Children’s Home

Conducting session on Eco Brick with the students of class XII in Tri – Jyoti School

Session on Eco Brick with the children of Bourgandi Nepal Children Home

Most of the localities in Kathmandu is seen littered with plastic and all other types of waste. This is due to the poor waste management system and lack of awareness. GFF Helps has been conducting sessions on plastic waste

management with the children of Shree Bal Kumari Basic school, Tri -Jyoti School and Bourgandi Nepal children home in order to generate awareness and intending that the children learn from these sessions and pass on the knowledge to their peers and parents. Children have been engaged in making Eco Bricks from the discarded plastic waste in order to turn into something useful later on.

With the help of such sessions, children have been able to understand how to focus on reducing waste, reuse bags in order to avoid single use plastics and not to burn plastic in the open roads which in turn results in damaging effect on human health. The children have been able to understand how plastic has affected us in everyday life. In order to stay healthy and live a long life, it is necessary to take care of our environment which in turn affects the whole ecosystem.


Joe FisherEco Brick- Environmental Project with Schools and Children’s Home
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Let's work together

Reading Workshop & Mobile Library
“Enhancing the opportunity of access to library resources.”
“Engaging students in authentic reading experiences”

There are two groups of kids located in different towns that GFF Philippines visit once a week. This month, Stefany and LPchanged location and visited the students from Capitan Tazan Memorial Primary School located in Ugsod Village in the town of Banga. These kids are related to each other and live in the same neighborhood. The opening of classes already started, and these kids were also going to school for a half-day class. In the afternoon, they spent time with us and do many activities to enhance their vocabulary.
We prepared worksheets for them and they mainly focus on vocabulary and letters. This is a good reinforcement for them after going to school. One of the mothers commented that instead of playing after school, they are looking forward to an after-class workshop with us. They are very happy that their kids had this free workshop something that only privileged children could afford. An after-class workshop that will further help them in their studies, will cost them a good amount, but we are giving it for free. That made them responsible and active. 

“Healthy Meals: Healthy Bodies and Minds”

Mr. Vincent with his family at their wide vegetable garden in Ugsod Village, Banga, Aklan, Philippines.

The Vegetable Garden Project Phase 3 continues to give nutrition and living to our families who are members of GFF HELPS Aklan Workers ’Association  in Banga Town, Province of Aklan. It has been their everyday routine to weed, to water and to involve their children in taking care of the vegetables since Summer Time of this year- wherein some of the seeds got withered but somehow survived and were taken notice by our farmers. Now that the rainy season is coming, most of our farmers are thinking of a solution to where they could still continue planting their vegetables despite unpleasant weather – perfect timing is the secret. Most of them had reserved matured seeds out from matured vegetable fruits that they could plant anytime on a fertile soil. We are grateful that our members are doing their best to not waste any of our seeds.


“Teach hands-on skills as it gives learners an opportunity to try out new methods and fail in a safe environment.”

Stifhany, LP, together with the kids holding their reflection paper and mud volcano.

The kids poured ingredients inside the mud volcano under the instruction of LP.

The Group Workshop was inspired by the Summer Program initiated and facilitated by Willyn and Michael last 2019. It was held in different towns in Banga, Aklan. When the pandemic started, everything was halted. We decided to do it again but in smaller groups. Ten students have been selected for this workshop and all of them are living in Tabayon Village in the Town of Banga. Seven kids participated in the activity. The Workshop was divided into 5 days and depending on the available schedule of the kids, we will conduct each day. The First Day of the Group Workshop was successfully conducted. The topic was about Volcanoes, their types, and examples. The kids participated in an energizer activity, proceeded with the discussion, and made their volcanoes. They are monitored and instructed throughout the activity. The kids were assured that a failure to make a volcanic eruption is okay. In the end, they successfully made active volcanoes and were fascinated with the eruption. They wrote their reflection on the activity. Testimonials of the parents and the kids were collected and all of them were satisfied by the outcome.

Online Storytelling
“Gives students the power to express themselves through multi- literacy modes.”

The kids enjoyed reading the funny story of the girl who had her first wriggly tooth. They also shared memories of their first loose tooth.

Kids have been busy preparing for the opening of classes. They will be engage into different setting and lessons. Most of their classes will be half-day and they are not allowed to go out until 12 noon. But, the kids have been hooked into Thursday afternoon that they would still join Online Storytelling. One mother said that Thursday afternoon and the stories have been the only thing that they are looking forward to during the pandemic. Somehow, they got used to the time and the session. We are very glad for our avid attendees. The Storytelling Gala that we will be having soon will be a great opportunity for them to meet children from other countries.

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GFF Helps India Celebrates Achievers


Student_s felicitation 1 (2)
Student_s felicitation 1 (3)
Student_s felicitation 1 (4)
Student_s felicitation 1 (5)
Student_s felicitation 1

I am really happy that I got 83% in my board examination. Had it not been for the teacher’s guidance and dedication, I would not have scored well.’
Smriti Rai,

‘It is important to hold such felicitation programs, because it will encourage not only the students but also parents. They will know the value of education and in this way, there will be zero drop-out rates. Thank you for recognizing the hard work of children and teachers.’

Yugen Lepcha, coordinator, SOGG Learning Centre, Bong

GFF Helps India has been working in tandem with the SOGG Open Learning and Information centres of Bong, Chibbo and Pudung since the past two years. The areas of collaboration have been in the field of education, health, sports, livelihood, providing awareness among many others. In the field of education, the SOGG Learning centres provide free tuition classes to students with the aim of reducing drop-out rates in the villages.

Every year, the students of class 10 and 12 appear for board examinations- The scores achieved in these exams are considered very important for getting into universities, professional courses or training programs and other occupations. The teachers of the respective centres guide the students in preparing for the examination for a minimum period of one year.

This year, the students who had appeared for the board examination from SOGG Learning centres of Bong, Chibbo and Pudung did excellently well. Most of the students are first generation learners. Despite the challenges of attending classes online; their hard work, teacher’s dedication and parent’s support have reaped good fruits. Thus, to acknowledge and honour the students for their outstanding academic performance, GFF Helps Representative in collaboration with the staff of SOGG centres felicitated the students in the presence of the parents as well as executive members of managing committee of their respective villages.

As a follow up of the felicitation program and based on need assessment, GFF Helps representatives- Melissa & Nikita will thus be organizing a career guidance program/ career counseling session for the students in the forthcoming days.

Joe FisherGFF Helps India Celebrates Achievers
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Safety First for Philippines

Safety First for Philippines

GFF Helps philippines collaborated with



The GFF HELPS Philippines is delighted with the successful result of the 2-day Occupational First-Aid and Basic Life Support-Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation with Automated External Defibrillator (BLS-CPR with AED)Training 2022 by Red Cross Philippines Aklan Chapter, headed by Mary Joe B. Galeon, the Chapter Administrator in La Felicidad Granja Farm, Lapnag Banga, Aklan last July 14-15th, 2022.

The twenty (20) participants of the said Training came mostly from our GFF HELPS Aklan Workers’ Association Members and School Clinic Teachers who have elderly, children and infants at home and have students whose schools are located far away from the town proper. Their location hinders them to rush in the hospital just in case accidents could happen. The training suits every participants since no one knows where and when the accident could happen. As they were trained as First-Aid providers, they could perform and help the victims while waiting for the Emergency Response Teams to reach them. The training provided them enough knowledge on Bandaging, Carrying the patients, CPR,  and many more.

As Mr. Nelson Tulio has quoted: “The training adds up to my knowledge as a Physical Therapist in town. The Certificate of Completion that I have received from Red Cross Philippines also serve as a proof and people won’t question my credibility in performing First-Aid Training.”

safety needs for our GFF HELPS Aklan Workers’ Association Members”

Lady Peace Remaneses, LPT GFF HELPS PH Representative

These are the Head of the families who benefited the First-Aid Training, from left to right: Mr. Simon, Mr.Tulio, Mr.Rebano, Mr. Villanueva

Reading Workshop & Mobile Library

The session of the Reading Workshop with Barrera siblings and their cousins continues. This small group of kids continues to progress, and we always praise and encourage them to do their best. All of them were recognized by their school as achievers and received awards. We are happy to see their growth as well as their parents. We make sure that they receive simple prizes like stickers and small toys after the session. They would always look forward to these prizes and do well during activities. We also developed a strong bond with these kids that they would always give us a hug when we arrive and leave.

Enhancing the opportunity of access to library resources

Stifhany A. Salvador, LPT
PH Mobile Library – Stifhany and LP together with Barrera siblings and their cousins holding their worksheets.



Online Storytelling

“Gives students the power to express themselves through multi- literacy modes.”

Blended learning has been introduced recently to help the students cope with modular challenges since the pandemic started. In this kind of system, students learn via electronic and online media as well as traditional face-to-face teaching.  We are happy to see that most students allocate time to join our Online Storytelling session despite strict schedule. Most of them were recognized recently by their school because of their exemplary performance. We did not forget to include their pictures in the presentation as our congratulatory gift for them. We are proud that the kids associated with our projects were talented and achievers. As we look back, these kids have been with us for more than two years. We can see how much they grew. In our eyes, they are still the same kids that like to read stories and colorful pictures.


The GFF HELPS Philippines’ Vegetable Garden Project has always been part of  the daily lives of the beneficiaries in the different villages in Banga Town. As we got to visit the participants’ houses on the later weeks of July, we were able to see the growth of the crawling vegetables like squash and string beans. Our beneficiaries are very responsible and hard working in making bamboo fences that would serve as crawling support for these vegetables. They also tend on their vegetable plots most time of their days. Some produce were sold and some were consumed by their family. Junlen, spent almost of his mornings and afternoons in his ricefield that he turned into a beautiful vegetable garden with the seeds given by the GFF HELPS PH Team.

the “Healthy Meals: Healthy Bodies and Minds” aim

Lady Peace Remaneses, LPT

This is LP together with Junlen while he is maintaining the cleanliness of his vegetable garden in Agbanawan, Banga, Aklan

Joe FisherSafety First for Philippines
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Outreach, connect, learn and grow – PHILIPPINES


The level of sanitation and good hygiene practices among indigenous people is low. They survive through the old ways of living that may not be effective today. Red Cross Philippines in coordination with the Aklan Trekkers spearheaded a program about hygiene that will help the indigenous people of Aklan called Atis or Aetas. GFF HELPS PH Team was invited to join the program. We travelled for four hours from Kalibo town to reach the headquarters of Aklan Trekkers in Malay town. We met more volunteers from other groups and helped them prepare the groceries and hygiene kits. The Aetas of Malay, Aklan is thriving in its mountainous part, so we have to trek for almost three hours back and forth. These hardworking people helped us with our loads. They listened intently to the lecture of Red Cross Representatives and received hygiene kits after. They also ate the foods that the volunteers prepared for them. We are so happy to see the smiling faces of the Aetas. Their gratitude and warm welcome were enough for us. These programs made them feel that they are not forgotten.

“Improving the well-being of indigenous people by teaching good hygiene  practices.”



GFF HELPS PH Team with the volunteers and some members of the Aklan Trekkers and Red Cross Philippines.
Some Aeta youths in the village.
GFF HELPS PH Team with Aeta youths in the village.

Online Storytelling

“Gives students the power to express themselves through
multi- literacy modes.”

“Oh no! There are two monsters already!” one of the kids gasped after reading the passage. They enthusiastically participated in the alternate reading of passages. They are also fascinated with the pictures. They learned that usual fights with siblings will always be resolve with empathy and good conversation. It is not the first time that they relate with the story. Our stories were carefully chosen to suit the age of the kids. We always make sure that it is relatable and fun. At the end of each session, we always have a recap of the story and reiterate the good values portrayed.

The kids relate to the story “How to Tame a Monster?” which talked about a usual fight between siblings and how it was resolved.

Reading Workshop & Mobile Library

Stifhany and LP together with Barrera siblings and their cousins holding their worksheets.

We started the first session of the Reading Workshop with Barrera siblings and their cousins. This small group of kids was gathered by Mrs. Karen De Juan, an association member. Two of these kids were her sons. All of them are preschoolers and need an ample amount of guidance and patience. During our next visit, we prepared printed worksheets from educational websites. The worksheets target the writing and artistic skills of the kids while learning about numbers and counting. Mrs. Karen and other mothers were grateful for the regular visit that we do for their kids. She said that it is a good break for the kids instead of playing outside the whole day.

“Enhancing the opportunity of access to library resources.”

“Engaging students in authentic reading experiences”


Stifhany and LP together with Kalibo Bikers Rally doing the School Clean-up Drive and Vegetable Planting on June 13, 2022 in Sigcay Elementary School, Sigcay, Banga, Aklan

School Clean-up Drive and Vegetable Planting

The Brigada Eskwela (helping one another) is an activity led by the Department of Education (DepEd) where everyone in the school community works together to prepare schools for the opening of classes.
This led the GFF HELPS Philippines Team to initiate this Community Project: School Clean-up Drive and Vegetable Planting Program in Sigcay Elementary School, prepared all the necessary documents and other materials and collaborated with the officers and members of the Kalibo Bikers Rally (KBR) to maximize the work and cleaning activity. The said activity will later benefit the pupils of Sigcay Elementary School since the leafy vegetables called Sweet Potato Vines are rich in iron and fiber and will later bear nutritious root crops. This will later harvested by the pupils for the opening of school year.
Our gratitude to Kalibo Bikers Rally (KBR) for joining the GFF HELPS Philippine Team’s Community Project in Sigcay Elementary School, Sigcay, Banga, Aklan, Philippines.
As known to all, the Kalibo Bikers Rally (KBR) is a group of youth, government employees, government officials, professional and private individuals headed by the group’s President, Hon. Kobe Abet Magsisi, and Vice President, Mr. Phil Melgarejo, followed by the rest of the officers and members, who bike around the Panay Island – where Aklan is located – for physical health awareness, bike-touring, volunteering in charities and doing ride-for-a-cause programs and community projects.
It is good and advantageous in our part to communicate, gather different organizations, and involving them in these kinds of works to improve camaraderie and networks between the GFF HELPS Team and different organizations in Aklan.

“Doing charity works to schools to help the future Filipino children.”

Lady Peace
GFF Helps Representative

“Helping the community through networks and connections to organizations”

GFF Helps Philippines

SDG 15
SDG 17


Joe FisherOutreach, connect, learn and grow – PHILIPPINES
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Mental Health needs to be addressed




The pandemic that lasted for more than 24 months has had dramatic changes in the lives of families- parents and children alike. GFF Helps representatives felt the need for a session that would help promote healthy socialization as well as support effective behavior of children and families. Ms. Dechen Y. Bhutia, a psychologist at Army Public School Kalimpong facilitated the session. The main aim of the session was: 

  • to help parents understand their own roles and responsibilities
  • to maximize positive outcome for children and their families
  • to help parents understand their children’s individual needs and development

The target group for the session were parents of Bong, Chibbo and Pudung villages, that was held on the 13th of May, 19th of May and 20th of May respectively. The session was rewarding as many doubts were cleared and clarifications made. 

New Gallery

‘I thought I could control my child in every way possible, but this session opened my eye. I am truly grateful for attending this session.’

Prisca Rai
Bong Village.

Joe FisherMental Health needs to be addressed
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Inter Quiz Competition


“I really enjoyed guiding the students well and they have done well. We had a good exposure. Thank you for organizing the event.” Milan Bardewa, Coordinator and teacher, Team Chibbo.

An inter centre quiz competition was held in Chibbo for the students of Bong, Chibbo, Kameshi and Pudung in the month of March 2022. The aim of hosting the quiz competition was to evaluate the knowledge of the students- academic as well as beyond academics. Students from class 7, 8 and 9 took part in the competition- and their knowledge was tested from 4 fields namely- general knowledge, sports, history and geography.

Ms. Lisa and Mr. Anthony Thocker attended the event as Chief Guests

The participants had well prepared as they had been guided well by their respective centre teachers. The event was moderated by GFF Helps Representative Ms. Melissa Namchu and made the session interactive, so that the students are not intimidated but to further build their confidence. Questions about Kalimpong were also asked for the students know about their community and society. The first place was grabbed by Team Pudung, followed by Chibbo, while Bong and Kameshi were the second runner’s up. Ms. Lisa and Mr. Anthony Thocker attended the event as Chief Guests and were impressed by the knowledge that the students possessed. They also shared message to the students. This one day event was rewarding to the students as well as their mentors.



Prizes ready for distribution

“Our team thoroughly enjoyed the competition. Our teacher guided us well. Next time we will stand first!” Lyang Ong, Participant, Team Pudung.





Quiz competition preparation

With the finalists

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