6,200 schools and counting

PRESIDENT Ferdinand Marcos Jr. receives a model barrio school from FFCCCII president Dr. Cecilio Pedro (right) and executive vice president Victor Lim during the induction of officers of the charity organization in Malacañang Palace in June.(PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF FFCCCII)

The philanthropic organization Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry Inc. said it will donate more classrooms and school buildings in far-flung areas in the coming years as part of its commitment to help provide educational facilities for less-fortunate Filipino children.

“There are ongoing constructions of several units in different provinces. This will be inaugurated by our committee members in charge of this project. Each school building costs P550,000. However, in certain areas, this is not enough, so we ask the local chapter to help contribute to putting it up in their localities,” Dr. Cecilio Pedro, president of FFCCCII, said in an interview.

According to Pedro, one of the diverse civic projects of FFCCCII is “Operation Barrio Schools” which started in the 1960s. OBS encouraged Filipino-Chinese entrepreneurs to donate public school buildings in economically disadvantaged and mostly far-flung rural areas throughout the Philippines.

“The country’s biggest philanthropic project of its kind, through Operation Barrio Schools, the federation’s remarkable contribution of 6,200 public school buildings stands as a tangible testament to its dedication to providing good quality public education for all the Filipino youth,” Pedro said.

Fighting chance

FFCCCII is also funding the Deaf Evangelistic Alliance Foundation or DEAF Inc., which provides deaf and mute Filipinos a fighting chance to be well-integrated into society, Pedro said during his Straight Talk interview, a digital show of the DAILY TRIBUNE.

DEAF Inc. was formed because it is hard to find schools or even classrooms for deaf and mute people. Such school of the foundation not only provides basic sign language education for deaf students.

“I have a school that produces teachers and sends them to the deaf and mute schools,” Pedro told Straight Talk.

To date, the FFCCCII has been supporting learners in 16 deaf and mute schools, scattered in the archipelago, including in Davao, Nueva Ecija, Ilocos Norte and Palawan.

“This would make deaf and mute students, once they graduate, become better and responsible citizens in the community,” he added.

According to Pedro, the country lacks teachers and classrooms for deaf and mute children numbering about one million.

“Luckily, the Duterte administration has given a sort of subsidy for the education of our deaf and mute community. Some of our students are receiving a subsidy of P60,000 for deaf students—P30,000 for the students and P30,000 for the institutions for the entire year,” he said.

To date, Pedro said the project has produced 400 teachers nationwide teaching the deaf and mute.


In times of crisis, the FFCCCII has proven that volunteerism knows no bounds. The federation supports Filipino-Chinese volunteer fire brigades nationwide, demonstrating its commitment to community safety and resilience in the face of adversity.

The Filipino-Chinese community’s unique volunteer fire brigades assist all victims of fires and other calamities in the Philippines regardless of their ethnic or socio-economic backgrounds.

FFCCCII’s philanthropic spirit shines brightly in times of calamity.

Pedro said the organization galvanizes Filipino-Chinese communities to donate and conduct relief distribution to families impacted by typhoons, floods or other disasters.

FFCCCII, which celebrated is 70th anniversary this month, have initiatives extending far beyond boardrooms, reaching into the heart of socio-civic and philanthropic causes. 

Trade and Industry Secretary Fred Pascual expressed his gratitude to FFCCCII for its invaluable contribution to the Philippine society through programs such as the OBS. Speaking at the foundation’s recent 70th Anniversary Gala Night in Pasay City, Pascual called on FFCCCII to continue its collaboration with the Marcos Jr. administration in championing shared goal of economic prosperity and social welfare as he underscored the significance of a strong private and public partnership

FFCCCII adopted the slogan “Dugong Tsino, Pusong Pinoy” for its anniversary event to stress the foundation’s spirit of charity.

“They are a majority full-pledged Filipino citizens with Chinese heritage, with all members contributing to the social development of the Philippines,” Pedro said.