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Rural Initiative for Science Education (RISE) in Mindanao, Philippines

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Donation Total: $20



My Project

I lead Pueblo Science’s international RISE program, which will show local teachers how to include new experiments in their classrooms and how to connect scientific concepts to daily life. Topics to be covered during the workshop will include environmental protection, water purification, and renewable energy.

Teachers attending the training will come from various provinces of Mindanao, and they will be recruited in collaboration with Ateneo de Davao University. Priority will be given to teachers from remote areas.



Fundraising Target

$11,650 to train 120 teachers from remote areas across Mindanao, Philippines on how to use locally available materials to create science kits that can be integrated into the local curriculum and that help young students understand the connections between human activity and their communities.


Date and Location of Training

May 11-13, 2017

Davao City, Mindanao, Philippines

Classrooms in Remote Communities of Mindanao: Challenges on the Ground

Davao City brings us to the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao whose students continue to perform poorly on national assessment tests in math and science. Teachers and students typically live in remote villages surrounded by rolling mountains once covered by thriving tropical forests. These used to be home to rare animal species such as the Philippine eagle, but the past few years have brought tremendous changes. The forests have been stripped of their natural assets and are now mostly denuded. Occasionally, some agricultural crops are planted.

Local science teachers often do not have the background to develop learning activities that help young students understand concepts that relate to communities, environment, and health. The teachers currently teach physics, chemistry, biology, and math to students in grades 7 to 12. But in many cases, teachers are educated as generalists and are themselves not specialists in any field of science. A recent nationwide curriculum change forced them to teach all disciplines even if they were not trained in these subjects.

The teachers receive little to no government support, and everything they currently use in their classrooms is paid out of pocket. In some cases, they ask their students who often come from impoverished families to bring materials for the activities.

We work with teachers who are dedicated and eager to learn how to encourage their students to take an interest in science and engineering. The teachers travel for hours to Davao City from remote communities across Mindanao, using their own money and giving up vacation time to attend our training because they believe it will help them inspire their students.


Who Am I?

5882My name is Mayrose Salvador and I am the executive director and co-founder of Pueblo Science. I have dedicated my career to engaging and inspiring youth to pursue a lifelong interest in science and engineering. I strongly believe that good science education and great role models could end the cycle of poverty in remote areas of the world. As scientists and engineers, we can contribute to this world by solving important challenges and inspiring the next generation to follow in our footsteps.

I completed my PhD in optics and nanotechnology from the University of Toronto and a postdoctoral fellowship from the University of Minnesota. I have over 17 years of teaching experience at all levels of study.



Where Your Donation Goes

Cost ($) Quantity Total ($)
Subsidies to help 6 Canadian volunteer scientists reach teachers in Davao
International travel (portion)  300 6 1,800
Local flight and transportation 200 6 1,200
Accommodation  80 6 480
Materials for experiments during workshop  600 10 6,000
Materials for experiment development 60 10 600
Instructional manuals 4 120 480
T-shirts for volunteers 15 6 90
Program Development Cost 1,000 1 1,000
Total Project Cost $ 11,650


Project Impact

The 120 teachers that will be trained in Davao will yearly engage 1,800 students. Based on previous programs implemented in the Philippines, we expect the following impact

  • Students’ attitude towards science turns positive
  • Students will turn what they learned in their science class into a livelihood project or a project that benefits their community
  • Teachers will start holding peer training camps and student camps outside of their classrooms
  • Teachers create their own science kits using local resources