The Springboard Foundation has a long lasting relationship with Kinderhilfe Philippinen. Annette Helbig has just returned from Padre Burgos,, Southern Leyte where Juergen Schneidt is busy improving the educational and medical needs for the poorest of the poor, while he looks after more then 100 children in his children’s village. Almost all children in the village have been abused or neglected and have now found a place of refuge in the village. Beautiful native houses are nestled around a lovely garden and basketball court. A housemother lives with around ten children in each house. They are like a family; children of various ages look after each other like brothers and sisters. The older ones help with the daily chores. All children go to school. They are well dressed and fresh. You can see that they are happy because their smiles shine brightly on their lovely faces.
Juergen builds day-care centers in the area of Padre Burgos, he also renovates and equips schools and builds home economic centers. He has build rural health centers, renovated hospital, bought laboratory equipment and medicines and implemented water projects.
In 2003 Springboard Foundation financed the building of 2 day-care centers and applied for a grant from the German Embassy for a new roof for the community health care center. The money was granted.
Since they were fantastic projects and very well implemented the Springboard Foundation wanted to support Kinderhilfe further. Juergen is a dream come true for any grant making foundation. With his efficiency, diligence and transparency the projects always completed well within the budget, quickly and with superb quality. The Mayor of Itum near Hilongos said that the new day-care center was the role model for all other barangays. No other had such a beautiful building complete with all teaching materials and toys.
The Springboard Foundation approved the financing of a third day-care center and the purchase of 10 sewing machines for 5 home economic centers. We approved the funding in June and by August the building was already finished. The sewing machines were all bought and are in operation in the 5 Home Economic Centers.
On September 28th 2004 we went to Southern Leyte for the Blessing and Turnover of the day-care center to Itum, the local community. Annette Helbig, Nadja Helbig and Kerrie O’Callaghan went to Leyte after their visit to Cebu.
Again, we were amazed by the efficiency and diligence of Juergen Schneidt. He marveled about the commitment of the community where the new day-care center stands. And he was right. We were touched by the many expressions of gratefulness for the center, by their hard work in making it more beautiful. They had built miniature houses of the community for the children to play with and they created a little garden, they built a fence around the compound to keep the children safe and they had prepared a program for us that was both touching and inspiring. They treated us to a speedboat ride to a little island (the speedboat being a little Banka) while a heavily armed man guarded us with his machine gun. The Barangay (community) had prepared a feast for us that included Lechon (roasted pig) and other delicacies. They had asked the help of a lady who had just returned from Germany to help them prepare dishes that we would like. The food was excellent. We in turn treated the children to a wonderful meal followed by ice cream. We served them at their colorful little tables inside their new beautiful day-care center. That was a real hit among the children. Springboard provided the finances and Kinderhilfe did all the work.
We also stopped at the day-care center that were built last year and were very happy to see them full of children who were gladly learning skills for their future schooling.