By Terence Repelente
Photos by Noel Pabalate
Putting hope in education, National Book Store (NBS) and the National Book Store Foundation are continuing their mission of being a partner in education and lifelong learning with their collaboration with the Friends of Hope, Inc. (HOPE), the makers of “Hope In A Bottle,” which is their flagship product.
HOPE is a social enterprise that prioritizes building public school classrooms and devotes 100 percent of the profits from “Hope In A Bottle” to this cause. It believes that every Filipino has the power to vote with their peso about the things they value most. The organization has put building public school classrooms at the top of its list, and invites everyone to help it build more, one HOPE product at a time. In partnership with the oldest, most iconic retail bookstore in the country, HOPE is launching a new collection of its bestselling paper products with designs inspired by and co-created with NBS. The idea leads back to their organizational philosophy: to empower the Filipino consumer to shop meaningfully, to make a difference through their purchase. Up to 25 percent of the retail price of this collection will be allocated to building public school classrooms. The collection includes spiral notebooks for P65 each; Kraft journals for P49 for a set of two; journals for P249 each; leather journals for P279 each; and notepads for P49 or P59 each.
Present during the formal NBS x HOPE launch at the National Book Store branch at the SM Aura Premier was NBS managing director Xandra Ramos-Padilla, who spoke about the beginning of the partnership and how NBS constantly applied its core values to the project. “This is another milestone, which started from a simple conversation to now a whole display of products,” she said. “I remember, in 2004, National Book Store Foundation was established to give the gift of reading to children in public elementary schools through mobile libraries. From then on, our projects have evolved from lending books to constructing libraries and distributing school materials. We also repaired broken school facilities, but we’ve never built a classroom before, so this is partnership will be our first time to build a classroom.”
Giving hope to children has always been part of the philosophy of NBS ever since its founding, according to Xandra. “It is our greatest passion to be with these children as they discover and explore the world through learning. And it is because of this passion that we work with our friends from HOPE on this special advocacy collaboration,” Xandra said. “This line features journals and other paper products, but with a twist—a HOPE twist. It is my sincere hope that these items remind all of the value of education, lifelong learning, and giving back.”
By buying these products, according to Xandra, NBS will eventually be able to donate a real and usable classroom, not just the contents inside it, but the structure, the classroom itself.
“Twenty-five percent of the profits will be donated to fund an instructional room in a select public elementary school. Together we can bring education closer to these children, and help them get one step closer to realizing their hopes and dreams,” she ends.