Cotabato provincial board member Reynaldo Pagal and Kidapawan City councilor Dr. Roberto Omandac attended last June 23-27, 2008 a Families and Schools Together (FAST) training-seminar at Madison, Wisconsin, USA under the auspices of Families and Schools Together Inc., a non-profit agency that designs and distributes family strengthening and parent involvement programs to help kids succeed in school and in life.
Board member Pagal, City councilor Omandac and Atty. Ermelo Libre, Executive Director of Mount Apo Foundation Inc. (MAFI), participated in the 4-day FAST discovery track involving orientation of various FAST programs and presentation of research-based approaches that improve family function and boost academic performance of children of all ages. The award-winning programs of FA.ST help families improve parenting skills, connect families to their schools and provide protective factors around the kids and students to keep them safe, smart and prepared for life’s challenges.
Atty. Libre plans to bring the FAST program in communities benefited by the Foundation’s High School Financial Assistance Project through the MAFI-assisted secondary schools around Mt. Apo in order to strengthen the educational roles of parents and deepen the involvement of students, teachers and community leaders. During a dinner at Edgewater Hotel in Madison, Patricia Davenport, Chief Executive Officer of FAST, Inc. has expressed full support to the idea of bringing FAST to MAFI’s area of responsibility.
The president of MAFI-assisted Secondary Schools Association (MAFI-ASSA), Zaldy Bornea, who first learned about the FAST model through his parents in USA, is convinced of the many advantages FAST could bring in terms of students’ academic performance, parenting skills and over-all community well-being. Mr. Bornea is currently making plans and arrangements with Patricia Davenport for the holding of first FAST training seminar in Mt. Apo.
“With the support of local government leaders who have learned the FAST model like Cotabato board member Reynaldo Pagal, Kidapawan City councilors Roberto Omandac and Joseph Evangelista (Evangelista had attended a F.A.S.T training last January 2008), I am positive that FAST can be implemented in key schools and communities around Mt. Apo,” Atty. Libre added.