Balikatan 2018 humanitarian assistance project for Capas school

Filipino, American and Australian soldiers complete the construction of one unit, two-classroom school building in Calangitan Elementary School, Capas, Tarlac. It is one of the humanitarian assistance projects in line with this year’s Balikatan military exercises among the three nations. (Trixie Joy B. Manalili)

TARLAC CITY — A school in Capas town benefitted from the Balikatan 2018 humanitarian assistance project.

Filipino, American and Australian troops turned-over the completed one unit, two-classroom school building in Calangitan Elementary School.

Speaking in behalf of the soldiers, United States Marine Corps 9thEngineer Support Battalion Commanding Officer LTC. Soulynamma Pharathikoune said they are committed in helping teachers in raising the next generation as good and productive citizens of the Philippines.

“At the end of the day, we serve. We came here, built the school so that teachers may continue to serve as well. Hopefully, many years from now we will see the products of your labor and service through these kids who will grow up to be outstanding citizens,” he emphasized.

For his part, Tarlac Vice Governor Carlito David underscored the importance of education in defeating and overcoming poverty.

Construction of school building would be of big help in addressing the shortage of classroom that affect the learning development of the students.

“This school building will become a manifestation of the strong partnership among the participating countries in this endeavor and the forging of a deeper commitment in improving the quality of education. This is a proof that anything is possible when people join hands and combine efforts with the willingness to help,” David said.

Meanwhile, School Principal Roberto Santos Jr. expressed his heartfelt gratitude to the soldiers for their selfless service, effort and collaboration in turning their dream into a reality.

“Indeed, we achieved success in this endeavor. This is a manifestation of peace and harmony among the nations involved. Rest assured that this is in good hands and it will always remind us of your generosity,” he added.

Balikatan is the annual military exercises between the Philippines and the United States. Australia has been a participant since 2014. (CLJD/TJBM)

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