Knowledge Channel Foundation Inc. president Rina Lopez-Bautista (center) flanked by Lopez Group chairman emeritus Oscar M. Lopez and former US President Bill Clinton at the 2008 Clinton Global Initiative.I wish you all a Happy New Year. I wish for you all that you wish for yourselves and more. I wish for dreams to come true. So I would like to share my dream with you, and make it our dream for the Philippines. I dream that one day poverty will be a vague memory for most of our people. I dream that one day we would have gone beyond just surviving and have our own science, math and technology good enough to launch spaceships and land a Filipino on the moon. I dream that one day we will be the movers that end wars and bring peace to the world. I've travelled to many parts of the world. And in many of these places, I have encountered Filipinos or people whose lives have been touched by Filipinos.
I attended a 2-week course on non-profits at Stanford University, and being the only Filipino or Asian for that matter, one by one my classmates went up to me and told me how he/she was touched by a Filipino or by Filipino-ness. I was on a cruise ship to Alaska and realized that more than 400 of the 800 crew on the ship were Filipino. Sadly, though, most of them were below deck. My goal for them is that more of them become officers and leaders of the ship.
While in Alaska, the parish priest informed me that the Filipinos were the pillars of the church there and that without them there may not even be a church. While in Qatar, I was told that out of the 1.9 Million population in country, there are about 300,000 Qataris and there are about 200,000 Filipinos! So there must be some sort of influence we have in this world.
In Prague there is a successful Filipino store on the main street selling Filipino goods like sinigang mix and Maya Hotcake mix. The owner is a Filipina married to a Czech. We are definitely all over the world. As such, we touch the lives of people all over the world. Given the number of Filipino domestic helpers, there is a high probability that we are bringing up the next leaders of this world…and in a manner that is very Filipino.
I tell you this because when we as Knowledge Channel educate the learners of today, we need to be conscious that the future of these learners is a global one. They will be working internationally, be it physically or virtually.
There is much to do. We need to rethink what it is that we do best to achieve our dreams. These thoughts I’ve read recently resonate deep within me - As it always does, it starts with a dream. Add faith and it becomes a belief. Add action and creativity, and it becomes a part of life. Add perseverance and it becomes a goal in sight. Add patience and time and it ends with a dream come true.
For 13 years now, we – the Knowledge Channel – have focused on providing educational programs and learning to the underserved learners and teachers in elementary, high school, the alternative learning system and even to the pre-school or day care system.
This year, 2013, let us focus on our dreams. Let us do what we can to make our dreams a reality. Let us work with an urgency to bring educational leadership up to par with the rest of the developed world using the multiplier effect to our advantage. I am talking about the superintendents, the principals, the teachers. To bring Knowledge channel to every learning space, we need to focus so much more on those who can make it happen in those areas. We have focused on the learners; it is now time to focus much of our energies and resources on the teachers and the other educational leaders. It is they who can help us reach our dreams in the soonest possible time.
We would like to see our dreams come true in our lifetime. I know it can be done.
I know it can be done because of who we are – dreamers, believers and men and women of action and faith.
Happy New Year!