Local teacher Eleanor Aleksich is helping to improve the quality of learning in the Philippines. Photo: Harri Jordan.

Local teacher donates 50kg of books to Filipino school


Eleanor Aleksich is sharing the gift of learning and storytelling with children in need through one very simple idea.

Eleanor is a teacher in Nelson and recently spent a holiday volunteering in the Philippines.

After visiting a local school there, she was inspired to help in any way that she could.

“It was just going to the school and seeing that they didn’t have many resources,” she says.

On returning home, Eleanor set about finding book donations from local schools in the area.

“Their reading scores were really low for their year,” she says. “They have nothing compared to what we have here. The community is not a rich community as it’s mostly farmers growing produce.”

All in all, Eleanor has collected 50kg of books from Broadgreen Intermediate, Victory, Tapawera and Waimea Schools.

“They need more English resources because if you don’t get exposure to it then you can’t learn.”

The books include maths textbooks, readers for young children, picture books, fiction, non-fiction and school journals.

“We’ve got an excess here that often go into a skip. At the end of the year teachers don’t have the time to organise or the money to send them.”

She hopes the delivery costs will be covered by a third party.

“The books will take a huge load of the principals’ back because they’re stressed about reading levels because the school strives to be very academic.”

The books are due to be shipped this week and will take around six weeks to arrive at the school.

“If we have the money to do it some more, I’d be happy to do it for as long as it needs to be done,” says Eleanor.