Dear supporters, A few hundred kilometers away from Marawi City, where the battle to defeat ISIS in the Philippines has just come to an end, lies Zamboanga. This highly urbanized city has become a prime target for Islamic State (IS) recruitment, and in just the past few months, more than 50 men have been arrested in the Zamboanga Peninsula for having direct ties to ISIS and its Filipino affiliates. To counter these recruitment efforts, a US Army civil affairs team in Zamboanga is working with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to bolster student enrollment, improve educational outcomes, and teach counter-extremism lessons to at-risk area youth. However, several schools in the district lack chairs, tables, and other necessities for an active learning environment, forcing students to sit on the floor if they attend school at all. In order to fill this urgent need, the US team reached out to Spirit of America. Providing tables and chairs to seven area schools will not only significantly improve the learning environment for these vulnerable students, but also help highlight the local government’s commitment to the population and support continued collaboration with the US team. This effectively works to counter ISIS recruitment and ultimately saves lives. Please consider making a gift today to aid this crucial effort. As always, thank you for your incredible support, Terrell Chandler Project Manager – Asia Pacific
Terrell Chandler is Spirit of America's Asia Pacific Regional Program Manager.