Kapatiran came into being as the result of a joint effort of a few emigrated Filipinos, pulling their resources together to share their experiences and help each other in their new situation after leaving their home country, the Philippines. It started out as a call for simply solidarity: Solidarity with Filipinos in the Netherlands and elsewhere, and solidarity with the Dutch and other migrant groups.
The members of the board in the formative years were mostly Filipinos by birth. Only one was Dutch who was married to a Filipina. Now the composition is half Filipinos, half Dutch.
Apart from solidarity activities, small scale income generating projects were started mostly in the areas in the Philippines where the Filipino board members had their roots. It was in 2000, that Kapatiran officially started with its Basic Literacy Programme. This programme was welcomed with open arms among the very poor in rural areas spread all over the Philippines. For the School Year 2008-2009 Kapatiran sent 285 pupils to the elementary school in eight provinces: Agusan del Sur, Cagayan, Cebu, Davao del Sur, Ilocos Norte, Negros Occidental, Oriental Mindoro and Zambales.
In 2007 Kapatiran started the Livelihood Projects Programme for the parents of pupil beneficiaries of the Basic Literacy Programme. This programme is meant to augment the meagre income of these families. For more information please click on Projects/Livelihood Projects.
Besides this Basic Literacy Programme Kapatiran extends her network with well-organized NGOs in the Philippines like, for example, Akay Kalinga Centre in Zamboanga City, the PREDA Foundation in Olongapo City and the NFEFI (Negros Forests & Ecological Foundation, Incorporated) in Negros Occidental.
Through Cordaid Kapatiran is able to assist in the education of 97 abused children and street children from the PREDA Foundation in Olongapo City, Zambales and 62 children from and the Akay Kalinga Centre for street children in Zamboanga City.
The two main areas of work of Kapatiran are:
- Providing assistance to local communities in the Philippines in setting up income-generating projects, and
- Providing educational assistance to indigent children by conducting fund-raising and awareness campaigns in the Netherlands.