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AFP receives P1M donation from PCSO for children of military heroes

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) received a check donation from the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) worth P1 million.
AFP chief of staff General Eduardo Año received the check donation from PCSO head Retired Major General Alexander Balutan yesterday in Camp Aguinaldo.
The donation is to help assure military heroes that the education of their dependents is taken care of.
“Every year, about 400 of our soldiers are maimed or killed due to combat operations and non-combat activities that imperil the education of over a hundred children who depend on their parents-soldiers for support,” AFP Public Affairs chief Colonel Edgard Arevalo said.
He also said that the donation will help support the education by way of stipends for 178 AFP Educational Benefit System Office (AFPEBSO) scholars-dependents of soldiers who were separated from the service due to complete disability or have died in line of duty.
“This is one of the many gestures of the AFP’s and the nation’s deep gratitude to the men and women in uniform who rendered selfless service and dedication to duty that caused their death or disability. That in the end, No child of a hero is left behind,” Arevalo added.
The AFPEBSO is continuously partnering with different government and non-government institutions to fulfill its mandate of managing the education of soldiers’ dependents. Educational programs in AFPEBSO include law-mandated programs, and those by virtue of partnerships with educational, government, socio-civic and financial institutions.
Currently and for more than 16 years now, there are 4,005 AFP scholars nationwide – most of them are studying in Luzon and Mindanao. More than 2,000 of these scholars are already in college either receiving monetary allowance or availing of free matriculation fees in various colleges and universities.
“Most of the scholars in AFPEBSO are orphans of our fellow soldiers who died in line of duty. Helping them through educational support is the least we can do to repay the ultimate sacrifice their fathers and/or mothers did to secure our country,” AFPEBSO Chief/General Manager Navy Commander Dwight Steven Dulnoan said.
Arevalo thanked PCSO as one of the AFP’s partners-stakeholders as he also urged other partners to consider the sending to school of children of military personnel.
“The AFP greatly appreciates the efforts of those that, like the PCSO, are our partners-stakeholders. We wish to invite other benevolent institutions to collaborate with your AFP in making education of orphans of Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors, and Marines a shared advocacy.”

Criselda Cabangon David, a happy mother of two kids, is a full-time Sociologist at the City Government of Lucena, Quezon Province. She is currently the Managing Editor of Ang Diaryo Natin Sunday News, a weekly local community newspaper in the Philippines and an active member of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.