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Rivera helps out poor students to finish studies

Ronnel Rivera
He does not have any committee at the Sangguniang Panlungsod, but this does not deter City Councilor Ronnel Rivera to provide services for his marginalized constituents.

Since he assumed office in 2010, the number one opposition councilor has allotted some P3.5 million every year as fund assistance for educational program which benefitted more than 4, 000 students from elementary to college.

Harold Tare, RCR Foundation education in-charge, said Rivera has not been receiving his monthly salary amounting to P36, 000 but instead donated the money to Parents-Teachers Association from the 70 elementary public schools in General Santos City.

He said the 70 PTAs in public elementary schools each receives P18, 000 every year as educational assistance for the poorest of the poor pupils who could not afford to pay miscellaneous fees for their studies.

Since the educational assistance program was launched in 2010, the RCR Foundation was able to help some 3,500 elementary pupils studying at the public schools in General Santos City.

Tare said RCR Foundation has been allotting P1.2 million every year for its educational assistance to elementary school children in the city.

For high school level, RCR Foundation has prioritized fourth year high school students to be given educational assistance to ensure that they can pursue their college education.

Tare said at least 130 fourth year high school students from the 26 public high schools in the city have been receiving some P650, 000 education assistance every year from the RCR Foundation.

For its college education program, Tare said the foundation has been allocating some P1.6 million annually to at least 260 college students who are enrolled in engineering, business administration and nursing courses.

“Through our educational assistance program, the foundation was able to help at least 15 poor but deserving students finished their college studies,” Tare said.

Jackie Pepito, one of the RCR Foundation’s scholars, said the educational assistance he received from Rivera had really helped him pursue his college studies.

“The educational assistance launched by the RCR Foundation was a big help to those poor but deserving students who wanted to finish their studies,” said Pepito, who graduated with a degree on business administration.

Princess Villanueva, a nursing graduate, said Rivera has really expressed concern on the sad plight of his underprivileged constituents who could not afford to send their children to school out of extreme poverty.

“Councilor Rivera wants to help alleviate the economic condition of his poor constituents through a sustainable educational program,” Villanueva said.

Despite the deliberate move of the present administration not to give him a committee chairmanship at the City Council because he belongs to the opposition bloc, Rivera stressed that it did not wither his desire to help his poor constituents.

“In fact, I consider this as a challenge to really work hard to help the marginalized sector of the city even to the extent of shelling out my personal money,” said Rivera, who is vying for the mayoralty post in the forthcoming polls.

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