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Trolley by trolley, volunteers are helping kids keep their ...


Trolley by trolley, volunteers are helping kids keep their studies on track

In the Philippines, teachers are bringing education to impoverished children with a novel mobile school

Adrian Portugal

A brightly decorated wooden trolley rumbles down a little-used rail track in the southern Philippines carrying four young teachers, two in the front and two in the back, pushing it along with their feet.

Kitted out with a whiteboard, colourful charts and a stack of books, the tiny mobile school slides along from village to village three times a week, bringing education to impoverished children near the city of Tagkawayan as the Covid-19 pandemic keeps schools shut in much of the Southeast Asian archipelago.

“It’s important that we do this, especially now that there is a pandemic and the children cannot do face-to-face learning,” Shaira Berdin, one of nine volunteers who operate the trolley, said as children crouched in the grass by the track, thumbing through English books...

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