Barangay Maytegued is one of the islands of the municipality of Taytay in Palawan. It is home to about 700 people who has had no access to a stable and reliable source of energy since it’s been inhabited.
According to Florence, one of Maytegued’s community leaders, majority of its 166 households depend only on one barangay generator that provides 3-4 hours of unstable electricity at night. “It’s definitely not enough for all of us here”, she says.
Elementary school teachers assigned in the island also share their personal accounts of challenges teaching in an off-grid school. Grade 4 teacher, Ardel, had to go through the grueling process of going back and forth to be able to charge his laptop on solar power just to be able to teach his lesson for the day, “at this grade, technology is already vital in my curriculum”. Sharing a similar sentiment, Kindergarten teacher, Jasmin, says “we felt like we had no right to push the students to stay put in classrooms or take home assignments because without lighting and ventilation, children aren’t placed in comfortable situations enough to study”. Jokingly, Jasmin says, “our electricity used to be so unstable that it seemed like we were always celebrating Christmas at night while lights kept going on and off!”