Sometime in October, my boss Blair Duncan called me into his office one afternoon to tell me that our company is participating in one of our clients’ Corporate Social Responsibility Program (CSR). I had jokingly reacted with “Oh, so we do that sort of thing now?” thinking this would be the first time ever that any of our clients would start a CSR program. He said yes, and then began explaining how Haywood Securities, an investor of Filminera Resources Corporation (our client) had donated Can$20,000 towards the purchase, setup, transport and installation of 13 computers into four selected schools in Masbate province. This, he said, also included training of the teachers who will in turn teach the students how to use the new computer systems. Blair asked me if I would like to go and handle the teaching.
I said yes.
(Nov 6) So here I was on the first week of November, sitting in the ground floor common room of Staff House 3 at the Filminera Resources Corporation compound. We had finished the rounds of visiting 4 schools in as many municipalities of Masbate in the two days that we have been here, but since Typhoon Quinta decided to hover about near enough for the weather bureau to host Signal #1 over Masbate, our stay had been extended by a few hours. Sleepless hours for me, because I kept thinking of how to start this post.
We flew from Manila to Legaspi last Wednesday 5th November. At the Legaspi airport a van was waiting to take us and a few other visitors to the Pier at Pilar in Sorsogon. A very interesting ride it was, unfortunately since the van’s windows were tinted, the pictures I took of the road were not too good. There was a Bayani Fernando tarpaulin poster on one of the electrical posts on the way, coming into Sorsogon on the right side of the road, but our van was moving too fast for me to get out a few shots. (Note: on the way back I saw another one, meaning there were 2 tarps on the boundary of Albay and Sorsogon. When I go down that way again in two weeks I’ll make sure to sit on the right side of the vehicle.)
Trip from Manila to Legaspi. Van from Legaspi airport to Pilar Port in Sorsogon. Cross the Burias Pass on the Lady Jacqueline of Leighton. Land on Leighton Pier in Puro, Aroroy. Short stop at the Filminera Resources Compound and then head off to do the school visits.
Visits to Liceo de Baleno and Liceo de Masbate, with a side trip to the Rosary Hills Retreat House to pay our respects to the Bishop of Masbate Most Rev. Joel Z. Baylon, and Monsignor Aquino Atendido, President of the Masbate Catholic Education Association (MACEA).