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
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."
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.