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Bright Start Give Books- Give Love Year

"Charity that does not change the situation of the poor isn't enough." ~Pope Francis

The environment plays a crucial role in the development of a child and one of the most upsetting situations of less-fortunate children is the scarcity of school materials that would enable them to have better literacy skills. Students living in resource-poor communities may not reach their full potential. How can they be good readers when they do not have books? Bright Start understands why parents of our beneficiaries do not buy books for them. Not that they do not want to, but because the very little income that they have (mostly as public-utility vehicle drivers) goes to food. Also, they themselves did not experience "book-reading" activities when they were young. Most of them come from poor rural areas hoping for a better life in the city.

For the past five years, Bright Start has strived to reach out and do something to change this. Through the kindness of donors, we were able to do projects such as Bright Readers wherein we have given books to children studying at public schools, day care centers and special schools. Just recently, we've launched Operation Webster with the aim of providing dictionaries and reference books to public elementary schools. Today, we want to strengthen that commitment by making December 1, 2014 through December 1, 2015 as the Bright Start Give Books- Give Love Year!

The first goal is to give a book to each child (age range: 3 y/0 – 5 y/o) studying at Barangay Apas Day Care Center and Lahug Elementary Kindergarten students. These are the total number of students per center:

• Sitio Baca Day Care Center: 50
• Mahayahay Day Care Center: 60
• Sto. Niño Day Care Center: 70
• Saint Francis Day Care Center: 60
• Sitio Panabang Day Care Center: 70
• Upper Toralba Day Care Center: 40
• Lahug Elementary School Kindergarteners: 22 sections – 659 students
• Lahug Elementary School SPED Center – 144 students

Total Children’s Books (new or pre-loved) needed: 1,153

The second goal is to provide each section of 1st and 2nd graders studying at Lahug Elementary School with at least 10 dictionaries. At present, students do not have their own dictionaries and classrooms are not supplied with dictionaries as well.

• 1st Grade: 22 sections - 998 students
• 2nd Grade: 21 sections – 947 students

Total Dictionaries (new or pre-loved) needed: at least 430

For those who would like share some children's books, dictionaries, and reference books, just drop by our Cebu office inside Kids' World, Edison St., Lahug, Cebu City. Please look for Ms. Marge. If that's not possible, we have volunteers in Manila, Los Angeles, Austin, Oregon, Australia, and Canada who can take care of shipping the books. Just send us a message for more information. We also accept cash donations as we can purchase the dictionaries on your behalf. One dictionary would cost PhP100.00 (~$2.50) each. Thank you for all your support! The more books --- pre-loved or new --- the merrier!

To God be the Glory!

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by Dr. Radut.