apl.de.ap joins efforts to build more schools

For this Black-Eyed Pea, giving poor children a chance for a better life feels better than winning a Grammy

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APL.DE.AP RICHARD REYES

What feels better than taking home a Grammy?

For The Black-Eyed Peas’ Allan Pineda Lindo Jr., more popularly known as apl.de.ap, it’s seeing less-fortunate children get proper education and, therefore, a chance for a better life.

In 2011, Pineda, through his own apl.de.ap Foundation and the Ninoy and Cory Aquino Foundation, launched “We Can Be Anything”—a campaign to construct more learning facilities, to help alleviate the acute shortage of (an estimated 66,800) classrooms all over the country.

At a recent press con, Pineda told the Inquirer that his foundation has built 15 classrooms in various provinces, including in his home province Pampanga, as well as Cagayan and Bataan. He also reported that the foundation has furnished his alma mater, Sapang Bato Elementary School in Angeles City, with a music room and a computer lab.

“I’m very hands-on,” Pineda said. “When I find the time, I visit the classrooms and watch the students working on the computers, doing projects, editing videos. The teachers say the students are all doing very well. I’m very proud of them; they fill my heart with joy. That feeling is priceless.”

Currently in the country primarily for his coaching duties in ABS-CBN’s reality singing contest, “The Voice of the Philippines,” the Filipino-American hip-hop artist said he wanted to make the most out of his month-long stay by continuing his education advocacy.

Touched

“I see on television that some kids in far-flung areas walk long distances, even cross rivers just to get to school. I found that very disheartening but, at the same time, admirable. That’s what keeps me going, doing the best I can,” he said.

Now, Red Ribbon and the Franklin Baker Company have teamed up with apl’s foundation for a project whose goal is to raise money to build schools, starting with one in Zamboanga that will benefit over 600 students.

Called “Red Ribbon Macaroons for a Cause,” the drive hopes to sell 4.2 million packs of macaroons. For each P50 pack sold, P7 will go to the apl.de.ap Foundation.

“I was fortunate to have been given a good education, and I want to give back. These children want to learn—I’d like to give them a place to do that,” said Pineda who, at 14, moved to the United States after securing a Pearl S. Buck Foundation scholarship.

Peace ambassador

Named by Malacañang as a celebrity peace ambassador in 2012, Pineda said he wanted to use education as a tool to inspire unity in conflict-stricken regions. “Education creates opportunities and, ultimately, prosperity. I hope it then inspires peace,” he said.

During the press con, Pineda performed his song, “We Can Be”: “Get your education/Change your situation… ” Thus, the international artist delivered the message that, with learning, one can be whatever one dreams of.

“Through my music, I want to urge children to dream, and dream big,” he said, and announced plans for his own vocational school, or even a music academy.

Meanwhile, he is bent on scouring the country for promising musicians. This, he said, was among the reasons that he decided to be a mentor in “The Voice PH.” Through his label Jeepney Music, he said, he planned to assist aspirants in jump-starting their music careers.

“We’d like to give them budgets for marketing or for making their own music videos. Right now, we’re trying to figure out how to do that,” he said.

Asked for updates about the independent movie that he planned to produce, Pineda said he was working on the story, which was still  being refined. “I have received suggestions for possible directors, but I still have to go over their reels,” he said. “Essentially, the movie is about a boy from a small town who goes to a big city… it’s going to be a slapstick comedy.”

Was he open to acting projects for local television? Pineda seemed hesitant but, since doing “The Voice PH,” he said, he had become more and more relaxed in front of the cameras.

“As the show moves on, I feel more comfortable sharing my stories and relating with the contestants. Maybe I can do TV na!” he said, laughing.

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  • Mux

    I have tremendous respect for APL.DE.AP. He knows how to look back to his humble beginning and help people.

  • Noel

    That’s amazing. Despite his looks exactly like that of a Black with no feature of a Filipino, his heart is 100% Pinoy. He will be blessed more by God. May he find the right woman in his life. By the way, what about Charice, Arnel Pineda and other Pinoy foreign artists? What have they done for our country?

    • CheapJ

      Charice and Arnel Pineda are also doing their own contributions/charitable work. Their act are very admirable as well. Maybe they can join forces in addressing more effectively social issues we have.

      Shame to the corrupt politicians!

      • Noel

        Maybe Arnel but not Charice. What she’s supporting now is her girl friend.

      • whenLoveandHatecollide

        Yeah, probably!

      • whenLoveandHatecollide

        Yes true that! Shame to our corrupt politicians!!!

  • CheapJ

    God bless you Mr. Pineda!

  • barok

    take that manny pacquiao!!! you can help your countrymen better than being a lousy absent bible preaching congressman.

    • superpilipinas

      do you know how much or how less Pacquiao has contributed compared to apl?

      • barok

        That’s a question for you to answer…

    • Noel

      As of this writing, Sarangani where Gov. Pacquiao and Vice Gov Pinky represent is suffering from floods. The two are nowhere to be seen there.

  • Fz20

    what about our country’s top 10 $billionaires as named by Forbes? baka ba ma-bankrupt kung tumulong?

    • jorgii0550

      Make some research 1st before making sweeping comments.

      Operation Barrio School is the longest running and biggest private sector led school building construction program in the country implemented by the Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII) . Since it started in 1960 up to present, the Federation has donated more than 4,500 school buildings to public schools nationwide.

      Just last week our FFCCCI turned over a new donations of 200 school buildings .

      How about those TRAPO politicians that the majority of Pinoy’s keep reelecting to their post? What are they doing with their millions of pesos pork funds yearly?

      To be fair even those who are not Filipino-Chinese on the top 10 like the Ayala family or Razon family have also big foundations which are helping the less fortunate.

      • Fz20

        “Just last week our FFCCCI turned over….” o hello, didnt know you’re being paid by these guys, anyway why cant they donate on their own to a country that sheltered them from communism and made them super rich or better yet simply pay their employees w/fair wages and not lay them off every 6 months to avoid regularity or use employment agencies, also, cant they stop bribing tax/customs/law-enforcement/Lgu’s/environment officials and pay taxes correctly? and why invest in china and give jobs and contribute to the economy that bullies us, steals our fish, sea resources and minerals and cheats the world w/ fake, tainted goods!even the local reds buy imported babymilk now. c’mon before youkissass make sure its clean, you ask anybody and the common answer; they’re noted for cheating…get real.Definitely not comparable to Apl the apl. in principle.

  • on_hindsight

    “I was fortunate to have been given a good education, and I want to give back…”
    ganyan! marunong magbalik sa lipunan. and i’m sure he won’t go unrewarded. mabuhay ka apl.de.ap!

  • Johnny

    I heard so much about this guy. Thanks for being kind.

    “Education creates opportunities and, ultimately, prosperity. I hope it then inspires peace,”.

  • whenLoveandHatecollide

    ” it’s seeing less-fortunate children get proper education and, therefore, a chance for a better life” …-apl.de.ap
    Very grateful to you for doing this to our least fortunate kids. kudos!

  • Platypus09

    PLEASE, NOT only building schools.

    If you look at all EXISTING public schools from north to south, MAJORITY OF THEM (80% plus) also NEED MASSIVE MAINTENANCE REPAIRS, IMMEDIATE RENOVATIONS and EXPANSIONS..

    You CANNOT just build schools and NOT ALLOCATING MAINTENANCE BUDGETS from REPAIRS, REPLACEMENTS OF CHAIRS, BLACKBOARDS, FLOORS, and SURROUNDINGS (environments).

    The major cities are enjoying well-maintained school buildings, BUT LOOK AT THOSE IN LOTS OF TOWNS all over the country. There are many of them that are old, and FALLING APART.

    Their school buildings have been in existent for more than FIFTY YEARS and we have not seen any REPAIRS and MAINTENANCE WORK done for decades.

    This is really SAD.

    When you build something, you have to allocate budgets for maintenance, repairs, painting jobs and purchasing of dilapidated school equipments.

    That is just PLAIN COMMON SENSE..!!!

    Let us legislate COMPREHENSIVE EDUCATION LAWS, that include massive building of schools and maintenance repairs all over the country.

    WE ARE PAYING OUR TAXES AND OUR CHILDREN SHOULD BENEFIT FROM THEM. MOST OF THESE CHILDREN ARE IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

    • dorkstar

      You do know that apl.de.ap is not from the government right? I doubt if you even heard of Black Eyed Peas songs. :-) And certainly you cannot demand from him from a foundation that he built mostly coming from his pockets. We should be thankful that there are people like him sharing every blessing that he has to be spent on the education of less fortunate Filipinos.

  • Renato Isla

    He walks his talk, this guy is serious in helping Filipinos even without publicity. Unlike our politicians and moviestars who simply enjoy the pictorials and cutesy press releases.

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