Friday, November 18, 2016

Excelling isolated Tublay School gets new books and toys

Baayan Elementary School Annex was thankful to be a recipient of books from the Libro Mo, InpirasyonKo (LMIK), a project to help build libraries in isolated schools in Cordillera and nearby provinces.

School Principal Linda Tambic said “they can now implement a reading program to help improve the reading comprehension of the pupils that wasn’t possible without reading materials.”

LMIK, a bookdrive headed by Smile Movement Integrated Leaders Entity, Inc. or SMILE was supported by A Child’s Dream Foundation, the Governor’s Office, Bookends Bookshop and several individual donors 

The school attended by 124 students, some coming from as far away as neighboring Atok, received 8 boxes and 2 bags of new and used books and also assorted toys and monoblock chairs and tables last November 18, 2016. These materials will be used in their library and kindergarten classroom.

Aside from the books and toys, SMILE turned over a reading program to Tambic that the school can adopt in their program.

Ligaya Awal from SMILE said the program was created by Aurelia Ballitoc, another School Principal in Lamut, Ifugao that helped improve the National Achievement Test (NAT) rating of Salamague Elementary School. “This reading program helped the school improve their NAT rating from 41 percent to 82 percent,” said Awal.

“Salamague Elementary School was a former recipient of books from SMILE that has become the case study on how to help other schools improve their reading programs,” she said. 

Awal who is also a retired teacher said she “was hoping this system could be duplicated in many schools as developing love for reading is a fundamental aspect of improving learning,”

Tambic said they are eager to integrate the system with a similar program they created but were not able to implement because of the lack of reading materials. “We had been praying for books to implement this program and thankfully our prayers are answered,” she said.

“I’m happy to see the children’s eagerness to read the storybooks,” she said noting the children already started reading the donated books and don’t want to put them down.

She said the school has been winning several competitions but they still need to improve the children’s reading comprehensions. She also wishes to start a journalism program for the school and was hoping for more books on this subject.

This is the initial assessment for the school and SMILE will be going back to specific books and sports materials to the school. Tambic said the school is also excelling in sipak takraw, chess, volleyball, table tennis and shotput. “We have produced athletes who have joined the Palarong Pambansa in the past so I believe our students have potential and can be competitive with the proper equipment to use in their practice,” she said.

Some of their equipment are already worn out, however, and their table tennis is already beyond repair.

Smile Movement is accepting book and sports equipment donations for the LMIK bookdrive and sports program project. Their email is 



Monday, July 14, 2014

School with new library resulted to better grades

Teachers of Salamague Primary School. Photo by Carl C. Taawan.

It's a joyful moment when you found out your mission somehow make positive changes to the community you intended to help.

That's what the S.M.I.L.E. Movement, Inc. felt in general when they received a result of the grades of students from the Salamague Elementary School in Ifugao with their overall rating improved. Last October 2013, the organization brought them books to build their libraries and sent additional teaching and sports materials afterwards.

School Principal Mrs. Aurelio Ballitoc sent the result of their National Achievement Test percentage score (NAT MPS) with an overall rating of 83.43 percent. She said this is a giant leap from last year's overall rating of 44 percent. Mrs. Ballitoc said the book donations contributed much to the improved result.

The improvement was primarily due to the program implemented by the School initiated by Ballitoc, a multi-awarded teacher. She said, with the books the group donated, they were able to implement the program. 

Books are indeed effective tools in teaching especially in places where there is no internet access for research. This is the very reason the group is aiming to reach out to isolated schools in Cordillera, to give better chances to students who have no access to reading and research materials. 

They believe that if the children's love for reading are developed at an early age, they will fare better when they go to higher levels. Giving the teachers sufficient research materials will also make them better teachers.

This is the aim of S.M.I.L.E. Movement, Inc. who started this drive to create libraries in isolated schools in Cordillera. The group is soliciting books from kind hearted institutions and individuals who are willing to let go of their used books or perhaps donate new ones for our kids in the barrios.

The above-mentioned results of improved grades in Salamague Elementary School can be duplicated to all the isolated schools. 

Students of Salamague Primary School.

Welcome to Salamague. 

Future leaders at play. 

Livelihood of parents. 
Photos and story by Carl C. Taawan

Saturday, December 21, 2013

"Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko" Receives award from Smart's PayItForward

Smile Movement's project "Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko"(LMIK) gained the approval of the judges of the recently concluded PayItForward second round of competition by Smart Communications, Inc.
The PayItForward competition was created to recognized organizations and individuals doing philanthropic works or activities for the communities in the country. The competition recognized 10 organizations as winner from over 40 participants.

The Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko project won the second round of the competition that run from December 3 to 10. Each winner received Five Coby Kyros tablets, a Smart Broadband Pocket Wifi, 3,000.00 worth of loads and 50,000 cash prizes.

The Program was open to individuals and groups that have programs or projects that have the potential to bring more benefits to the communities with the help of technology.

The competition was to present the group or individual's advocacy in a 3-minute video that shows the their mission or goal, what the project is all about, who the stakeholders are, the impact of the project on the community. It also includes future plans and how technology can help achieve these goals. In a nutshell, the project requires each group tell their good deeds and how technology will allow them to do more of it.

Smile Movement, Inc. presented the "Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko" project in a three-minute video containing the past recipients of the book drive that aims to build libraries in isolated schools in Cordillera, now on its second year. The LMIK project was started in October 2012 by individuals who wanted to help develop school children's love for reading by providing the isolated schools additional reading materials and encourage them to read more through short-story and poetry reading.

The organization has already brought books to Nine schools in Benguet, Ifugao and Mountain Province. Book donations came from private schools, publishing companies and private individuals who supported the project. Transportation and food allowances are shouldered by voluntary donations and from the group members' own pockets.

The prize the group received will greatly help the group's advocacy to distribute the books they received to other schools in the Cordillera outskirts.

The entry of the group was also helped by groups and individual who voted for the entry. Voting consist 30% for the criteria for selection of winners.  Criteria for selection of winners are as follows: 25% - Impact of the project in the community; 20% - Novelty of the project; 25% - Proposed use of technology; 30% - Votes. Total: 100%

Other winners who received the Smart technology package are the following:

U.P. Sandigan - project name "Tubig na Malinis ang Aming Nais":  a group of UP Manila pharmacy students who installed a water filtration system to benefit an Aeta community.

 Jeynard Caro - project name "Sinekalikasan": Sinekalikasan teaches students to take photos, videos and to edit them and turn into documentaries.

Johnnito G. Peradilla - project name "Help PNS": Teacher and club adviser leads a group in running a scholarship program, supported by foster parents and other sponsors.

Sining Bahandi Youth Film Makers - project name "Likhang-Indie Sine Para sa Kabataan": A teacher empowers hones students to become future filmmakers through workshop capped with their own film festival.

U! Happy Events - project name "Outreach Activities": U! Happy Events assists anyone who wants to hold personal charitable events.

Kent Ian Vargas - project name "BaZero": BaZero Project eliminates garbage by peer to peer education on waste segregation and upcycling, which is another income for the students.

Teacher Rosemarie I do - project name "Project Aral at Kalikasan": A teacher dedicates her Saturdays to holding literacy and basic computer lessons to members of the Dumagat tribe.

Uswag Calahunan Livelihood Association (UCLA)- project name "UCLA Paper Beads and Handicrafts": LGU employees of Iloilo City puts up a livelihood program for communities whose lives depend on garbage collection.

Grasya Bangoy - project name "Travel with a Purpose": She travels with a purpose, volunteering and implementing social projects of donors.

Story by Carl C. Taawan

Friday, June 28, 2013

Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko donated 100K+ Books to Kiangan and Sadanga Schools

A school kid in Duit, Kiangan, Ifugao smiles as he browses the donated books. 

The "Libro Mo, Inspirasyon ko" book drive visited schools in Kiangan and Sadanga and distributed  100,000.00+ worth of book donations as the start of classes kicked of this month.

The "Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko" kicked of last October 2012 initiated by S.M.I.L.E. Movement, Inc. to help build libraries of isolated schools in the Cordilleras.

The movement believed that the K-12 education system will not work unless quality of education are also improved and building libraries in schools who have no access to internet for research is one of the best ways to help improve the education of the children.

Sponsors of the book drive are Congressman Nick Aliping for the transportation, Rex Books Store who donated 58,000 worth of textbooks, Ben and Evelyn Liquete who donated 1 balikbayan box of assorted goods coming all the way from Australia, Marj Casuga who donated 1 set of children's encylopedia, Photojournalist Jj Landingin donated several educational software and 2 computer cpu, Baguio Chronicle editor Sly Quintos brought in several boxes of textbooks and inspirational books, Lorie Ann Damasco who decided to donate the collection of her mother Leonora San Agusting who was dubbed as one of the three witches of Baguio that consist of Readers Digest, inspirational books, National Geographic and other publications dating back to the 1940's.

Although she hates to see her mother's collection leave the house, Damasco said that " it would be better if they are used rather than just lying around gathering dust. The books will be more useful in isolated schools than in the city where research can be done through computers. "

Several good hearted individuals also donated old textbooks, lego toys and flash cards. Online facebook groups frequented by overseas workers NIKadKa, Tambayan Blues and Bebsat tako donated cash allowance for the drive.

Rex Book store's donation along with other elementary books were brought to Duit Elementary School in Kiangan, Ifugao last June 20.  The teachers headed by Geronima Pumihic received the books with teary eyes. The school's principal Thomasa Bumidang was currently on a meeting during the drive.

On June 21, Leonora San Agustin's collections were brought to Central School in Poblacion, Sadanga along with other books with an estimated total of 70,000.00. It was received by Mrs. Bernadette Macanas, the principal of the school. The books will be used by the school and the community for research.

Other individuals joined the cause and donated books, educational softwares and other educational materials like lego toys and flash cards for preschoolers.

From the start of the drive, five schools have received donated books: the new Sinipsip National Highschool Annex in Natubleng, Buguias, Benguet; Camilo Lucaben Elementary School in Madayment, Kibungan; Mappit Elementary School in Kiangan, Ifugao; Haliap National Highschool in Asipulo and Ayangan National Highschool in Lagawe.

The Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko book drive will continue to bring books to isolated schools requesting books.  

The movement is accepting donations; books, old but still usable computers, educational software, lego blocks and bookshelves. Donations can be dropped at Kikan Bar and Resto (former Ayuyang) at Baden Powell Inn and Kairuz cafe in Km. 6, La Trinidad. The group can be contacted through, phone numbers are 09269722222 and 09199933911.

School kids happily browses the books in Duit Elementary School.

School kids in Sadanga Central Elementary School browses books under the shade of the movement's service.
The two pupils of Duit Elementary School are fascinated with the small story books.

A school teacher in Sadanga Central Elementary School began teaching school kids with the newly donated books.

First time to see illustrated English literatures, the smiley faces of these kids in Sadanga shows their  appreciation of the donated books.

Photos and story by Carl C. Taawan

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko Book Drive In Full Gear This June

The multi-organization book drive will be going to different schools this June to help build libraries of schools in the outskirts of Cordillera.

The Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko kicked of last year initiated by S.M.I.L.E. Movement, Inc. The movement believed that the K-12 education system will not work unless quality of education are also improved and building libraries in the schools who have no access to internet for research is one of the best ways to help improve the education environment of the children. Several organizations and individuals joined the cause and donated books, educational softwares and other educational materials like lego toys and flash cards for preschoolers. Other donors pledged to donate computers. Other individuals donated budget for the transportation and gas.

From the start of the drive, five schools had received donated books: the new Sinipsip National Highschool Annex in Natubleng, Buguias, Benguet; Camilo Lucaben Elementary School in Madayment, Kibungan; Mappit Elementary School in Kiangan, Ifugao; Haliap National Highschool in Asipulo and Ayangan National Highschool in Lagawe.

This June, recipient of donated books will be Sadanga, Mt. Province. There will be follow up drives to the recipients in Ifugao for their requested computers and textbooks. We are also hoping to have more books for other schools in other areas in Cordillera like the far flung Natonin who sent us a request as one of the recipients of donations.

The movement is accepting donations; books, old but still useable computers, educational software, lego blocks and bookshelves. Donations can be dropped at Kikan Bar and Resto (former Ayuyang) at Baden Powell Inn and Kairuz cafe in Km. 6, La Trinidad. The group can be contacted through, phone numbers are 09269722222 and 09199933911.

Ensalidummaay Grand Convention

The support group for the book drive recently concluded their convention titled Ensalidummaay attended by about 8 organizations last April 21. It's a solidarity program of fun and discussions of issues and outreach activities they can accomplish together. It's during these gatherings that programs such as the Libro Mo, Inpirasyon Ko initiated.

The event was sponsored by individuals who supported the causes these groups had been working on. Aliping Family and Rob Ocampo donated budgets for the foods, drinks and rental of the place. Cash donations also came from River Valley Aggregates, One Cordillera group, No Igorot ka group, Tambayan Blues group and Real Sons and Daughters of Ifugao (RSDI).

Salidummay is a common song that every Cordilleran has probably heard. By using it as a title of their quarterly event, the organizers hope that despite the differences in culture, it will help build a better camaraderie amongst the different organizations that can be useful in building a better Baguio and better Cordillera.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

“Libro Mo, Inspirasyon ko” Book Drive Reached Isolated Schools in Ifugao

Assisted by the local government, a multi-organization book drive campaign made its way to three far flung schools in Ifugao last Tuesday, January 22, 2013 from book donations coming from several donors.

Riding atop Kiangan municipality’s multipurpose truck, the group successfully delivered books to an isolated elementary school in Mappit. A total of 54 students from Kinder to Grade 6 eagerly received the reading materials that are composed mostly of easy to understand story books. School principal Joseph Dulawan mentioned that there are formerly donated foreign textbooks books “but the materials are so different from our curriculum that we can’t use them. The story books are more appropriate as additional reading materials and the students seem eager to read them,” he said.

A book reading and short parlor games was conducted by the donors to emphasize the importance of reading. Papers and pencils from the group Real Sons and Daughter of Ifugao (RSDI) were also distributed. Afterwards, Mappit Elementary school hosted the lunch of the group with a total of 20 individuals including police officers led by PSI Bert Kiblasan and PSI Patricio Allaga Jr.

Not only as escort, the PNP also joined the book drive to conduct awareness on government programs to students and teachers alike. Surprisingly, some of the children only saw a policeman for the first time.

The Haliap National Highschool has already built their own library but except for some textbooks, it needs more reading and research materials. School principal Clarence Binwag said that “they were hoping to have a complete library that can match other high end schools so that the kids can complete academically.” Books donated to the highschool are composed of their own request of computer books, story books, and basic writing books for the school paper’s writers.

Transportation to the Ayangan National Highschool was cancelled because of emergency operation by the 86th infantry so the donations were received by Antonio Humiwat Jr. at the Provincial Museum to be transported to the school at a later time.

There will be follow up drive to the previously mentioned schools once the group can accumulate the requested materials. Mappit elementary school is requesting for computers and Haliap National Highschool is requesting for encyclopedias and educational software.

The “Libro mo, Inspirasyon ko” was initiated by several online organizations led by SMILE Movement to help build libraries in isolated schools in the Cordilleras. Its aim is to help develop the school children’s love of reading that will help prepare them to the challenges as they go to higher years.

Donations came from groups and individuals with some elementary school teaching materials donated by students of Baguio City National Highschool led by Vialou Perez. Several boxes of books were also donated by ABS-CBN anchorman Dhobbie de Guzman. Other donors are e-Cordillera Group, Dianne Baluag, Shanery Tuazon, the Aliping family, and a cash donation worth 200 Euros coming from an individual who asked not to be mentioned. Other cash donations came from Bebsat tako and Aliping Family. Cash donations were used to buy more story books, for transportation and for food allowance.

Some bookstores also partnered with the book drive through book donations: Ukay-Bookay bookstore that is selling 2nd hand books gave several boxes of teaching materials, Precious Pages donated story books and Rex bookstore will be donating textbooks to be used for next school year. The textbooks will be delivered during the follow up drive to the above-mentioned schools.

The first book drive was on October 16 last year benefiting two schools in Benguet: the recently opened High School in Natubleng, Buguias and the Camilo Lucaben Elementary School in Kibungan.

The next book drive will be on March 11 with a school in Natonin requesting to be the next beneficiary. The “Libro Mo, Inspirasyon Ko” organizers is hoping to have enough books to give to more schools. The organization can be contacted through Hotline number is 09072608888.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Smile Movement Launched in Rural School

A chilling afternoon in an Elementary School in Madaymen, Kibungan became the setting of the local Smile Movement launching by different online and offline leaders in coincide with their “Libro mo, Inspirasyon ko” book drive.

Numbering to 22 leaders from different online and offline groups, they took the “smile oath” in front of the 200 students in Camilo Lucaben Elementary school, the recipient of the book drive. Mrs. Elsie Baniaga, the head teacher in the school, officiated the oath taking.

The different group leaders had been active in outreach activities with the support of good hearted individuals and organizations from the locality and abroad. The smile movement is not an organization but a campaign than can be adopted by everyone. An example is the pay-it-forward smile card that helped spread the popularity of the movement.

The smile card is given when a random act of kindness is done to someone in need. It’s not a thank you card so it’s not the receiver of the good deed who gives the card; instead it’s the one who showed kindness. It’s an encouragement to the receiver of the card to pass on the kindness that he received.

The group left the isolated school more elated in accomplishing more than what they hoped and looking forward for a more outreach activity with better perspective in mind. With the launching of this campaign, they hope to unite more organizations to be able to accomplish more in their next activities and programs.

Mrs. Elsie Baniaga lead the "Libro mo, Inspirasyon ko" team in taking their smile oath.
The "Libro mo, Inspirasyon ko" and the Lucaben Elementary school teachers take a pose after the launching.