Balay Rehabilitation Center has given recognition to 26 learners in its Alternative Learning Center for passing the accreditation and equivalency exam administered by the Department of Education to students who completed the Alternative Learning System (ALS) Program. The passers represent 37% of the total learners currently enrolled in the Balay ALS program. The ceremony was held at the Balay – Alternative Learning Center in Phase 7 last October 24, 2019.
According to Balay Executive Director Josephine Lascano, the organization started its program in Bagong Silang in 2010 with the goal of reducing and preventing the exposure of children and youth at risk to violence particularly police related violence and organized crime prevalent in urban poor communities.
Among the graduates, thirty percent will move up to college, while the rest will either continue their education in the formal school system or get some technical education or seek better employment opportunities.
Bagong Silang is a relocation site in Metro Manila considered as one of the largest barangay in the Philippines with over 246,000 population. Wallowing in a state of socio-economic stagnation, it is mired in a youth bulge whose developmental options are restricted by poverty and a social environment that is ridden with violent pathways. This is an observation that even elected community leaders do not contest. With socio-economic levels below the national poverty line and unemployment rates between 45 % and 65 %, poverty has been a widely recognized driver of community violence in Bagong Silang.
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