|Projects index July 2010|
Lumen School opens in the Philippines
A new theosophically-oriented school has just opened in a poor farming district of Bago City, about 20 kilometres from the centre of Bacolod City, gateway to the western province of the island of Negros in Central Philippines. Built on a four-hectare property along a national highway, the school’s two-storey building has 5 classrooms and a large multi-purpose hall.
In June, the start of the regular school year in the Philippines, Lumen opened three classes at pre-school level with 33 pupils (nursery, kindergarten and preparatory). Elementary (primary) school will start next school year.
When asked about the driving force behind the building of the school, Administrator Ruth Cruz said, "My mother's main purpose in building a school in an impoverished part of our island was to give the children of desperately poor families a more even playing field in life, to see whether a bit of unconditional help could open up for them a whole new world of possibilities beyond what the current social structure has limited them to. She wanted these young beings to realize that there are other ways to live and so much to explore intellectually and spiritually. Currently, the struggle to survive seems to be the only goal that their families have. Thus, the challenge in Lumen is not only to prepare the children for future careers. There is also the need to teach them self-awareness, principles and transformational skills to guide them towards a more integrated way of living that is in harmony with nature and with the realization of man's higher potential".
Lumen School is being assisted by Golden Link College in the training of teachers and design of the curriculum. The transmission of theosophical values is a high priority. Funding comes from the Herbe Foundation, set up by long time TS members, Donato and Susana Cruz (at left), in the name of their eldest daughter who passed away at the age of five. Susana was the Founder and President of the Bacolod Lodge of the Theosophical Society. She established three schools: Besant School, Rainbow Play Centre, and Lumen School. Sadly, Susana passed away in January of this year, but not before completion of the school building. Her theosophical work has been greatly supported by her entire family, especially Donato. Administration of the school has been undertaken jointly by her daughters, Ruth and Ruby. Ruby’s husband, Philip, is also helping to continue Susana’s legacy.
We look forward to regular reports from Lumen School. May it grow into the thriving educational establishment Golden Link College now is.
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