Star-of-the-sea fundraiser: support the preschools in Inayawan landfill site, the Philippines

In the dump site of Inayawan, Cebu, 8 preschools welcome 106 children and 19 mums trained to be childminders. 

Progress: 30%

Funds raised so far: 30%

Star-of-the-Sea Catholic Parish - Collection 2023

Dear friends,

We are delighted to support Children of the Mekong, and especially the preschool of Inayawan in the Philippines. You will find all about the project on this webpage. Once you click on Donate (on the yellow one, right below), you will be redirected to our partner’s webpage Give2Asia, so that you will receive a tax receipt for your donation.

We would like to raise $25,000 in 2023! Every donation will make a difference.

Thank you for your support!
Gregoire and Marie-Cecile Vallançon

Donate now

20 years on

For more than 20 years, Batang (Children in Visaya) Mekong has been working in the Inayawan garbage dump area (and by extension in the San Pio resettlement area in Talisay City, the adjacent town) where a majority of the inhabitants still work as ragpickers, sorting waste in the storage warehouses that dot the area.

The aim of the project is to accompany the families towards a better life. Batang Mekong acts on different levels to give families the means to move forward with the care and education of young children in the preschool and the professional and spiritual training of the parents.

In 2022, all the preschools were reopened after the covid crisis, and have returned to their normal functioning.

Children dump site Cebu Philippines

Lifting the community up

The Batang Mekong project consists of several complementary initiatives, all of which aim to lift the community up:

  • The preschools, which in 2023 will accommodate around 106 children, 5 days a week, Monday to Friday,
  • The training for parents, whether it be professional training or more educational and spiritual training.

These actions combine to make Inayawan a dynamic community, an actor of its own success.

The nurseries

Batang Mekong Inayawan Cebu Philippines

Today Batang Mekong runs 8 preschools: 6 in the Inayawan district and 2 in the neighboring town, Talisay City, in San Pio Village, where some families have been rehoused.

The 9th preschool opened in February 2023 on the dumpsite.

The children are cared for in the homes of the volunteer mothers (like the 6 in Inayawan) or in dedicated houses (like the 2 nurseries in San Pio) who are Child Development Workers, allowing them to look after the children and benefit from appropriate professional training.

The aim of the project is first and foremost to enable children to develop in good conditions by providing them with an environment conducive to a healthy daily life. These good developmental conditions cover several aspects of the children’s lives: feeding, health and safety, hygiene, and playing and learning.

Parents' training

The strength of the Inayawan programme lies in its community spirit. This spirit is not only endemic to the neighbourhood, but also to Ate Helen’s drive and pugnacity. As you walk with her through the winding streets of the neighbourhood, everywhere Ate Helen is asked for, welcomed and thanked.
She believes in training to move her community forward. In addition to her work as the head of the Children of the Mekong sponsorship programme, which enables many young people to complete their studies, she has launched two initiatives for adult education. The first is very practical in providing parents with job skills that they can use in paid work to augment their meagre incomes; the second focuses more on parenting and spiritual growth for mothers, but more rarely in the Philippines, for fathers too!

adult training in the Philippines

106 children and their parents need your help to improve their lives with education!

Click on the link to donate. You will be redirected to our partner’s webpage Give2Asia. You can securely donate on Give2Asia and your donation will support the children of Inayawan.