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Include family photograph!  Village families are curious, just like you are.  A family picture gives greater dimension to your relationship.

Topics to discuss with your partner family

New Middle School (Basico)

Middle school students now attend classes in re-modeled buildings nearby the computer center.   The first 2-classroom building was dedicated in 2018, and a twin facility was soon to follow.

Dedication Ceremony for new class room building used by Basico (grades 7,8,9)
One of four new class rooms utilized by the middle school
Village challenges in recent years

We’d like to believe all endeavors of the village are done in harmony and transparency.  But the realities in SMT are not unlike other emerging societies.  Over the past years, land for farming has been taken up and subdivided within families.  There is not enough territory to meet today’s land demand.  Several families who have been unable to possess ample parcela land have established growing plots on publicly-appointed conservation forest at various village locales.  This has led to contentions because many villagers believe such conservation forests must continue to be unexploited.   While avoiding an over-confrontational posture, village leaders have had to enlist the local government authorities to help protect the lands.  There are no easy answers to the dilemma.  Does your family wish they had more land?

Saving and Loan Institution  

The village has its first formal financial institution for making loans to villagers, one that is sanctioned by applicable regulatory bodies to establish accounts, take deposits and extend capital to individuals.  As a remote indigenous community, the cost of borrowing has historically been prohibitive.  That may vastly change now.

Other things to ask about

What is the village like geographically?

Many families now live near a road.  Does yours?  Are there street lights?  Are more and more villagers using motorized transportation?  Do they live far from the village center?

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