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From a book by
Mother Teresa
of Calcutta,
which inspired
the work of CARTWHEEL:

"We did not come to be
social workers,
but to belong to Jesus.
Pray with Jesus and
Jesus will pray with you.

"Wherever God has put you,
that is your vocation.
It is not what we do
but how much love
we put into it."

Unit 213 Valle Verde Terraces, Meralco Ave. cor. Gen.Segundo st., 1600 Pasig City, Philippines
Telefax: (0632) 633.7442. Email:


The Cartwheel Foundation was conceived in August 1998 by
Gina Alfonso, a former Jesuit Volunteer to Mindanao, and pre-school administrator at The Learning Child (TLC) in Alabang. In her own words:

"Amidst my administrative work in the school where I work--The Learning Center in Alabang, I felt something pulling me to do something beyond."

Cartwheel President Gina Alfonso

"I basically just wanted a change of atmosphere -- some fresh air, and a simple uncomplicated life even for just a week. And the first place I thought of was Bukidnon, which is where Fr. Rafael Borromeo a dear Jesuit friend and mentor is based, and where the school which TLC had donated some chairs to, is located. I also thought it would be nice for my students at TLC to see the kids in Miarayon sitting in the old school chairs."

So Gina went with her video cam, and met Fr. Kit Bautista of Sta. Teresita High School. Fr. Kit talked to the elders in the community about what kind of assistance they wanted in terms of education -- and the unanimous decision was a school for the younger children, before they entered grade school. Gina said she would see what she could do. Teachers whom Fr. Kit picked from the community were trained in TLC in April 1999. And the Sta. Teresita Pre-school was opened in June 1999. When the magnitude of the project started becoming clearer, there arose a need for a foundation.


Based on Cartwheel's research and attendance at several conventions on the educational situation in the country, Region 10 and other areas of Mindanao are the ones most lacking in terms of educational opportunities -- especially for the pre-school and elementary levels. Since this is where the need is, this is where Cartwheel belongs for now.