25 April 2019, San Fernando City, La Union. Jay Ann Picardal became a FEED scholar back in academic year 2017/2018 as a Junior at La Union National High School in San Fernando City, La Union. She was a sister of then Scholar Joman Picardal, FEED’s first TESDA scholar in 2017 and he was the one who referred her as a high potential candidate.
FEED Scholar Jay Ann Picardal’s Personal Reflection
“Its been 2 years since I moved here to La Union. Looking back, I realise it has been a rollercoaster ride for me moving to a new school as a transferee (from Western Samar).
Adapting to new people, schedules, and the general social atmosphere was really not easy for me, coming from Western Samar where the pace of life is very different.
I can’t even remember myself going to school without feeling any pressure inside, especially during the first semester when I started Grade 11; I struggled establishing connections with my classmates and colleagues. One of the main reasons was because I had a hard time understanding their mother tongue, ‘ILOCANO’. I still remember what my teacher said to me, when my seatmate told her that I am a transferee, and I didn’t understand their language: ‘HINDI KAMI ANG MAG A’ADJUST SAYO, IKAW DAPAT ANG MAG ADJUST SA ENVIRONMENT NA MERON KAMI, KASI IKAW ANG DUMAYO’. (Tag. We are not the ones who will adjust to you, it is you who must adjust to our environment because you’re the outsider.)
“Honestly, I took slight offence at what my teacher said. But I get her point. I made her words my inspiration, to strive harder to engage myself in this new and strange environment. As time went by, I saw myself slowly adapting, and letting myself experience group works, late nights preparing for exams, and also volunteering for civic support.
Taking the Humanities and Social Sciences (HUMSS) field is not easy. Just like many other classmates, I aspire to become a Teacher someday. As a HUMSS student, it is not convenient to do only and all that you want; of course, you need to prepare for the real world’s battles. Facing strict criticism, the lack of understanding from language alone, and the inability to now what people were saying, and their true meaning.
But in the end, I AM SO PROUD OF MYSELF. Because despite these struggles, I still finished my two years as a Junior then Senior High School student, and managed to graduate with Honors. As a senior, I was a top 3 achiever in room base, and adorned with various awards, also making Top 8 out of 64 achievers with Honors in HUMSS (Humanities and Social Sciences) La Union.
It was very difficult to maintain my grades from the beginning to end, but my goals and dreams kept me in check, so I did my very best to achieve them to succeed – not only for me, but for my family and my future.
Everything paid off in the end. The hard work and harsh learnings too. I know now that I am many things to many people: an Inspirer, a Giver and a Leader, and for all, they tell me that I know how to Listen.
Completing La Union National High is not the end of my journey, it is also the beginning of a new one. This school year I will enter College and take up a Bachelor of Secondary Education at Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University (DMMMSU), San Fernando, La Union.
I recognise that there are a lot of new challenges I will face, and that I should not be pressured under unnatural terms, but instead be thrilled and excited to accept new moments and meeting different people and growing together. After all, “life begins where fear ends”.
College will not be easy, we all know that, it’s where real battles will prepare us – in as much as that is possible – for the real world. Struggles in life will never end, but when we believe in our self, everything is possible. Just persist. Personally, I also put God at the center of everything.
To Fostering Education & Environment for Development, Inc. (FEED), thank you for unending financial and other support for my studies. No words can describe how lucky I feel to be part of your organization. To the Bakker Family, Ma’am Ofelia, Sir Jacob and Ms. Anne-Marie Mananquil Bakker a big thanks for the great opportunity that you bestowed upon me. To my family, you all were and are behind and with me in all these accomplishments. I won’t promise everything, but I will do my very best to make you all, always proud. Thank you. And most especially to God above, thank you for everything.”
Truly, “the road to excellence starts here”.
– First hand account of FEED Scholar Jay Ann Picardal
FEED runs a number of Students and Volunteers for the Environment (SAVE); Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – such as mangrove planting for coastal protection or ridge reforestation plantings; One Child, One Tree; Bio-Intensive Gardens (BIG) for nutrition in public elementary schools and other spaces; Climate Change Survival 101 and other LIVING LEGACY programs – customised environmental engagement activities for individuals and organisations interested in contributing to climate change adaptation efforts and greening critical areas such as watersheds, ridges, and reefs that all require rehabilitation.
Tree-Planting with FEED: Video
Check out the video journey by Clueless Commuter who planted with us last 24th of June 2017 to get a good idea of how FEED plantings go: https://youtu.be/KROn4rjVqBg
© Fostering Education & Environment for Development, Inc.