Teachers who give more than expected: a spirit of volunteerism (Last of two parts)

(continued from May 16, 2021)

Title card of Voice of the Teachers Radio.

There are many teachers who share their time, talents, and even treasures to the underprivileged sectors of society. These sorts of teachers are those who are blessed both professionally and personally, not to mention spiritually. That they have so much love in their hearts and love to give can never be gainsaid, judging by their altruistic actions.

The pandemic has never stopped teachers from sharing their knowledge, albeit online. From training their fellow teachers on their expertise to distributing essentials to the poor and visiting their students to check on them, the teachers who do this are precious and few because they brave the virus and go out of their way to serve their respective communities.

Sharing knowledge: molding mentors and strengthening skills
I know not a few fellow teachers of mine who have been speaking to teachers and sharing their skills and knowledge with them. For instance, my good friends Mr. and Mrs. Bonjovi and BrenfelHajan have been facilitating online workshops on action research not only to teachers but also to students. I have been friends with the Hajans since 2017, when we taught at a major polytechnic institute, and I am proud to say that they are truly generous with their skills and talents. Two good friends of mine who have been making waves in advocating and teaching reading are Mr. Frederick Perez of XaiverNuvali (the current president of the Reading Association of the Philippines) andDr. Al RyanneGatcho of Trinity University Asia, who was also my colleague at the same school where I first worked with the Hajans.

In terms of imparting pointers on how to cope with the new normal in teaching, my friends from Valenzuela National High School- Mr. Auggene de Vega, Ms. Arlene Almazan, and others- have been conducting webinars on creating content for asynchronous learning, such as videos, online games, and other media content. It is indeed noteworthy to learn that there are such teachers who are willing to go the extra mile and even climb mountains just to impart their technological know-how to their fellow teachers.

As far as educational leadership and academic research in higher education are concerned, my mentors/friends have been at the forefront of promoting world-class Filipino education through planning, research, and policy making. In the field of linguistics, my friends/mentors from various higher education institutions are at the top of their game yet they are self-effacing and selfless. Examples of such mentors/friends of mine are Dr. Shirley Dita, Dr. Rochelle Lucas, Dr. Sterling Plata, Dr. AireenArnuco, Dr. JoahnaEstacio, Dr. Jose Cristina Pariña et al of De La Salle University Manila; Dr. Jessie Barrot of National University; Dr. Dennis Pulido of FEU Manila; Dr. Agnes Catalan-Francisco of Cavite State University; Dr. DaylindaLaput of Jose Rizal Memorial State University in Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte; Dr. Philip Jay Alcoberes of Philippine National Research Center for Teacher Quality (RCTQ); Dr. Jan Rich Guira, Dr. James Ventura, Dr. Mark Fernandez, Dr. Aries Lorenzo et al of our very own Mariano Marcos State University; and, several other friends of mine who are in the academe.

The power of media as a tool for being a voice of educators

Some of the hosts of Voice of the Teachers during the
15th Gawad Tanglaw Awards held on April 25, 2017.

One of the programs that is noteworthy due to its reputation as an educational radio show that is really for teachers and by teachers is Voice of the Teachers (VOTT) Radio, which airs over DWDD 1134 KHZ AM and Katropa DWDD CRS Virtual RTV (Facebook Live) on Sundays from 1:00 to 2:00 PM. It began as a mere 30-minute radio segment, with original host Mr. Reynaldo Samson, Ph.D, a law enforcer and professor, at the helm. He was joined later on by Mr. Robert Peter “Bobby” Ancheta, Mr. Gerald Galang, and Ms. Fe Matullano-Lustañas. I started being a co-host of VOTT on September 27, 2015, to be exact, and much later in the same year, Mr. Herman Briñas joined us. Many others followed suit and now, VOTT is really a community of teachers who share a common passion for broadcasting.

The current roster of VOTT hosts includes Katropang Rey, Katropang Bobby, Katropang Fe, Katropang Herman, Gender Awareness Development advocate and English teacher ManilynLegaspi-Tilde, Indonesia-based English teacher Angeline Aventino-Salvador, Media and Information Literacy teacher Janilo “Janno” Lopez, beauty queen/model/entrepreneur/professional librarian Joy Castillo-Pasidis, English teacher Portia Reggie Ebol, DepEd teacher and youth mentor Alberto “Albert” Colasito, CAT and ROTC teacher and military reservist Roderick “Ochie” Marcelo, teacher and church volunteer Emmanuel “Emman” Sakay, and yours truly, among others.

What is very interesting about VOTT is that it has different segments per week, based on the expertise of the hosts of the week. Apart from that, VOTT encourages teachers to share their fields of expertise in light of current issues affecting our educational system.

Other noteworthy programs for teachers include Education Radio (hosted by my friend PiaMorato) and TuroGuro (aired over DZRJ 810 AM on weekdays).

Volunteerism is indeed a noble cause, especially for educators like us. We are bound to be more blessed and to be a blessing to others because we make others happy, empowered, and grateful to God for He is the infinite source of all graces.

Money is not the only factor that can determine our generosity. Our time, talents, and listening ears are far more than enough because we are able to touch not only hearts but also lives.

To all other teachers who volunteer their time, talents, services, and treasures, may your tribe increase!

God is good for He has given us teachers who respond to His call to service and love!

If you have suggestions in terms of the education-related topics that you want me to feature, please feel free to send me an email to edteo.ramos@yahoo.com or to coachjet.inspirations@gmail.com and I will reply to you as soon as I receive your email.