Jonel's chosen path
Jonel was a 16-year-old child laborer from Paracale, Camarines Norte when Kara David featured his life in an I-Witness documentary "Gintong Putik".
He was only 10 years old when he started helping his parents in "pagkakabod" or compressor mining. Everyday after school, Jonel goes to the mine site and dives in a 5 meter mud pit filled with water, in the hope of getting bits of gold. He usually gets 30 pesos per week and he uses this for school allowance.
Jonel's father, Mang Agapito, only gets an average of 200-300 pesos per day. He has 11 children and due to extreme poverty, none of Mang Agapito's children have achieved an elementary diploma. Jonel is their only Primary school graduate and hope.
Jonel became a Project Malasakit scholar and has received secondary education at Paracale National High School. Last 2012, Project Malasakit purchased three piglets for hog raising and gave a Sari-Sari Store to Jonel's family as a source of an Alternative Livelihood.
Jonel is no longer diving for gold and has been successfully raising pigs while his family has sustained the Sari-Sari store we gave.
He was supposed to graduate from High School in 2014 but Jonel decided not to pursue his studies anymore.
In Camarines Norte, opportunities for somebody as poor like him are limited to whatever menial jobs are available in the province. Such is the kind of world Jonel grew up in, which influenced his limited perspective on the importance and long term benefits of pursuing a higher level of education. As much as Project Malasakit tried to convince him otherwise of his decision, we afforded to respect Jonel's chosen path.
It is not for Project Malasakit to impose our dreams on the children we support, but we would rather acknowledge each child's dignity and equip our scholars to be productive members of their communties and eventually of the country.
Jonel wanted to be a good journalist and the doors of Project Malasakit will always be open for Jonel, if and when, he decides to pursue his High School education and maybe aim again for that dream he once held.
Project Malasakit sincerely thank Jonel's donors that through your kind heart and support, Jonel was able to experience a secondary education.
Watch Kara David's "Gintong Putik "
Jonel's life in photo
Please click to enlarge:
How can you help our other scholars?
With just 1,000 pesos ($20) per month, you can help send a poor Filipino child to school, change their lives and give them a decent future
Elementary and High School
P1,000 per month to cover transportation, food, and school projects
P1,500 per year for tuition, uniform, student “ID”, PTA, etc.
Tuition varies widely P500-1,000 monthly allowance for food, transportation, etc.
Project Malasakit is a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) registered foundation with Reg No. CN 201013987 and TIN: 007-861-739.