PLDT-Smart Foundation’s Corporate Social Responsibility program Gabay Guro showed that it is fully committed to its promise to uplift the lives of public school teachers across the country, not just in February on Teacher’s Day, or in October for National Teacher’s Month.
On January 21, the NGO, through the initiative of its chairman and 2013 TOYM (Ten Outstanding Young Men) awardee Chaye Cabal-Revilla, re-launched a tribute song for teachers, especially composed by husband and wife Raul and Cacai Mitra, and rendered by no less than Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez.
“The song falls under our six guiding principles in Gabay Guro, which is to continually pay tribute and inspire teachers so that they can also carry on with their noble professions,” explained Revilla, who officially serves as senior vice present for corporate finance at PLDT.
Velasquez in turn, who regrets having been abroad when Gabay Guro held its grand and star-studded concert for teachers at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in November 2013, was happy to be able to re-launch the song “Believing in Me,” which she recorded gratis.
“Raul and Cacai also composed the song for free,” she humbly added, “and we are just very happy to be able to do something to honor our teachers, because like each one of us, I have also been inspired by my teachers. Two in fact, who were the very first ones who encouraged me to join a singing contest when I was a six year old elementary student in Bulacan. I’ll forever be grateful to them.”
“It’s really so nice of Raul, Cacai and Regine to accommodate us with this beautiful song. It pretty much sums up all we have to say about our teachers,” added Revilla.
The PLDT executive also took the opportunity to update The Sunday Times Magazine on the most recent projects of Gabay Guro, where the foundation has funded the rebuilding of several classrooms in earthquake-ravaged Bohol, and which they promptly turned over in December 2013 in the towns of Loay, Cortes and Taglaran. They also offered a mini-tribute concert to over 5,000 teachers in an event called “Pahalipay sa Bohol.”
“Our next targets are rebuilding classrooms in Tacloban after Typhoon Yolanda,” she continued, “and like I said earlier, all these fall under our guiding principles Gabay Guro, which also includes scholarships, trainings, housing and educational facilities, livelihood programs, and the tribute component whose newest addition is Regine’s song.”
PLDT Gabay Guro is a flagship project of PLDT-Smart Foundation that is run by volunteers comprised of executives from the PLDT-Manager’s Club Inc. To date, the NGO has given scholarship grants to over 700 students nationwide, while over 10,000 teachers have benefited from its free training programs.
“In between our projects and events, this new song is something we can offer to teachers to remind them of how truly grateful we are as a nation to all of them, and how noble their profession is,” concluded Revilla.