Empowering Alternative Learning System Learners through Financial Literacy and Basic Business Management

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The Secretary of Education of the Philippines, H. E. Leonor Magtolis Briones, has been reiterating the importance of financial literacy to both learners and teachers as the Philippines’ Department of Education (DepEd) continues to integrate the concepts into the curriculum.

Under the project of “Better Life for Out-of-School Girls to Fight Against Poverty and Injustice in the Philippines” supported by KOICA, UNESCO in collaboration with DepEd organized a “Life Skills Training-Workshop on Financial Literacy and Basic Business Management for Alternative Learning System” for the ALS girl-learners on 3 February 2020 at Hotel XYZ, Tacloban City, Philippines. The participants are the girl-learners registered under DepEd’s ALS programme at the Schools Division of Tacloban Cty.

The eighty-two girl-learners actively participated in the training-workshop that envisaged raising the level of financial literacy and introducing them to the fundamentals of business management, including entrepreneurship and basic accounting for non-accountants.

On behalf of the Regional Director of DepEd Regional Office VIII-Eastern Visayas, Dr. Arnulfo Balane, Assistant Regional Director, delivered an inspirational message to the ALS girl-learners. In his remarks, he highlighted that poverty is not a hindrance to success and that education is one way to improve one’s self and economic status. In addition, he said that attitude as well as the power of dreams are equally essential for improving one’s self. Furthermore, he emphasized the value of working hard for one’s dreams and stressed on the slogan, “If you think you can, then you can.”

Dr Arnulfo Balane also conveyed that the Alternative Learning System is an equally important programme of the Department of Education because it caters especially for the most disadvantaged segment of the society. He also expressed appreciation to UNESCO and KOICA for the unwavering support to the Philippines’ Department of Education especially to Regional Office VIII-Eastern Visayas.

On behalf of UNESCO Jakarta Office, Mr Marmon A. Pagunsan, the National Project Consultant, reiterated that the capacity building is an “investment” of UNESCO, KOICA and DepEd to the participants, particularly to the ALS girl-learners. It is with high hopes that there will be a favourable “return of investment and net profit” in the future when ALS girl-learners becoming entrepreneur(s) or someone with the right investment and enjoys financial freedom.

UNESCO Jakarta Office has been supporting the Department of Education of the Philippines with its Alternative Learning System programme through life-skills capacity building for ALS girl-learners to improve the quality of life for girls living in poverty. In particular, the project is supporting out-of-school girls registered in ALS programme for their further education opportunities and future job chances in order to improve their lives.

The life-skills training was organised to contribute in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) specifically, SDG 4 as well as SDG 3 and 5.

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