Dumaguete Education Centre

Despite recent progress in the Philippines, a shocking 3.8 million children and youth don’t go to school. Young girls are especially affected as they are expected to get married early. A lack of qualifications means these children are often locked into a lifetime of insecure, low-paying jobs in the informal sector and they cannot benefit from the prosperity around them.

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Dumaguete is a small seaside city of 120,000 inhabitants, it is also the capital of Negros Oriental – one of the poorest provinces in the country. The Dumaguete centre caters to 30 young men and women, aged 16 to 23, who come from the countryside or economically depressed regions and moved to the city to earn a college degree. The main role of the centre is to provide them with a living environment and networking opportunities to allow them to access job opportunities.

The centre also takes pride in providing fully human-centred training to encourage intellectual, emotional, and moral development in order to achieve human excellence and create future leaders. Training is provided in a variety of self-development topics such as time management, effective communication, career management, critical thinking and human rights. 

The students receive full tuition and miscellaneous fees, school uniforms, transportation and up to 90% of schools books and school project expenses in order to lessen the financial burden of their parents. Aside from school-related expenses, Children of the Mekong also provides free food and accommodation. 

Throughout their education, the students of the centre are followed and accompanied by a supervising team: a trained overseas volunteer, a social worker and a caretaker. Together, they ensure the personal development of each young person in our care. Thanks to the rigorous education they receive, most graduates are able to find a job within 1-3 months after graduation or board exams.