[As published in the August 28 issue of the Parish Bulletin]
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step” -Lao Tze, Chinese philosopher
Sometimes the first step we take is the beginning of a journey that leads us to a thousand miles.
The SSAP Scholarship Program began that way in 1996 when our parish started a Scholarship Program with P400,000, funds earned from the previous year’s FrancisFest. Twelve young boys from the poorest areas of Makati were chosen to learn a trade at Don Bosco Technical School. More and more applicants came each year, so that Monark Foundation, Inc., Punlaan School, and Manila (formerly Maligaya) Institute were added as partner schools for vocational/technical courses, opening scholarships to girls as well. When needy and promising applicants for college came knocking, the Scholarship committee widened its wings and accepted them to our program.
Funds allocated to the SSAP Scholarship Program from FrancisFest support our technical/vocational scholars. Our budget for each scholar is approximately P50,000 a year to cover tuition, food and transportation allowance, plus expenses for various Values Formation programs that help enhance the scholars’ personalities. This school year, the parish allotted P1.450 Million to the Scholarship Program, allowing us to take in 28 technical /vocational scholars.
In addition, we have 19 college scholars who are funded separately by generous parishioners who answer our appeal for sponsorship in the Parish Bulletin before the beginning of each school year. They are not included in the budget allotted to us by the parish.
Sponsored youth all have dreams of helping their parents uplift their lives. Most of them succeed, braving distance and traffic, heat and rain, and stringent living conditions away from home, to pursue their goals. We have gem graduates, achievers who excelled in school and in their jobs, who take pride in being able to help their families, send a sibling to school, and start their own families and homes. We have graduated almost a thousand scholars and lives have been changed!
Walk with us and take the first step of a journey of a thousand miles…. donate to FrancisFest 2016 for our vocational/technical scholars, sponsor a college scholar in full, or sponsor his/her tuition, or transportation, or food allowance.
(For more information on how to sponsor a scholar, please call Jackie, our socio-pastoral worker, at Tel. No. 843-8830 Line 4, or visit us at the San Antonio Parish office.)