Room to Read, an international non-profit organization, announced new initiatives with its literacy program in the Philippines amidst school disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Around 20,000 copies of high-quality children’s books created by the country’s top writers and illustrators are being distributed in five provinces of BARMM.
20 audio drama adaptations of the children’s books were produced in cooperation with Tanghalang Pilipino. These will be broadcast as radio drama supplementary learning materials through local BARMM radio stations.
Minister Mohagher Iqbal of the Ministry of Basic, Higher and Technical Education – BARMM expressed gratitude for the efforts of Room to Read and Tanghalang Pilipino in providing quality and relevant learning materials to the children of the region.
Fernando Josef, Artistic Director of Tanghalang Pilipino, welcomed the partnership with Room to Read and the opportunity for the company’s resident actors and writers to shed light on the lives of children in difficult situations through the stories portrayed in the books.
“The children’s books and audio dramas are envisioned to provide social and emotional learning support to children especially during this time of the pandemic,” stated Al Santos, Room to Read’s publishing manager for South East Asia.
“In aiming to distribute the books for free in remote areas in Southern Philippines, we hope to widen access to quality reading opportunities among Filipino children,” he added.
Room to Read and Tanghalang Pilipino partnered with the Ministry of Basic, Higher and Technical Education – Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao for the distribution of children’s books and the broadcast of audio dramas to enhance the governments blended distance learning and teaching modes during this period of the COVID-19 pandemic.