Inspiration

Look: Filipino Educator Clarissa Delgado Meets the Obamas As An Obama Foundation Fellow

The Teach for the Philippines founder was chosen from over 20,000 community leaders.
IMAGE COURTESY CLARISSA ISABELLE DELGADO
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When former U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama revealed the Obama Foundation's inaugural batch of Fellows on Instagram last April, the country was thrilled for Teach for the Philippines CEO and founder Clarissa Delgado, who was chosen from over 20,000 from 191 countries.

The organization pooled together 20 community leaders, who have an extraordinary background of civic work, and whom the foundation hopes to provide further opportunities for. Individuals from 11 countries who are involved with empowering parents, improving their community’s education system, aiding and schooling the disabled, and treating addiction were recognized as Fellows. 

Michelle Obama congratulated the Fellows on her post, saying, "You all give me so much hope. You represent the continuation of the possibilities for change around the world. Barack and I believe in you, and we couldn’t be more excited to watch your work continue to grow."

Yesterday, through a Facebook post, Delgado shared photographs with her fellow Obama Foundation Fellows and former U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. 

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Barack Obama, Clarissa Delgado, Michelle Obama

"Beyond grateful to be part of the Obama Foundation’s inaugural class of 20 Fellowsjoining 19 other community-minded allies and now, dear friends," she wrote. "Yet I represent but one face of so many. Staff and our forever Fellows, our student leaders, co-teachers and government Ambassadorstheir 2 a.m. mornings, brownouts, sticky heat and long commutes on tricycles, jeepneys, boats and on foot. For the most part, the Teach for the Philippines family is content to do our work behind the scenes. The wages of our love are to represent East Asia in opportunities like this, but most of all, seeing more of our trained teachers pursue lifelong paths towards social justicealigned around a singular vision of a more equitable Philippines."

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Delgado with other Obama Foundation Fellows

Delgado was handpicked for her work with Teach for the Philippines, which she co-founded in 2012 with her mother, Margarita Delgado, and Lizzie Zobel. For the last six years, the non-profit organization has championed accessible education for Filipino children by training young leaders to teach in public schools for a two-year period. This program aims to fill the gap of 40,000 teachers needed in the public school system.

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When the announcement first came out, Delgado took to Twitter to express her excitement about the opportunity: “Everything @TeachForThePH does, and all our partners and kababayans do, is always #ParaSaBata #ParaSaBayan.”

The Obama Foundation was founded by former U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle Obama. The foundation’s mission is to breed a whole new generation of civic leaders, who will inspire and lead their communities into the future. The foundation offers programs open to both established change-makers and those looking to get involved. Apart from the fellowship, the organization hosts summits, gives training sessions, and provides scholarships to empower its members.

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Visit teachforthephilippines.org. and obama.org for more information.

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Nicole Limos Morales
Contributing Beauty Editor
Nicole is the former managing editor of Town&Country. After working as features editor and beauty editor of the title’s print edition for 6 years, she helped launch Townandcountry.ph in 2016, creating new concepts and story formats, analyzing data, and mastering digital audiences—establishing the title to become the Philippines’ leading luxury lifestyle website. She left her full-time position in 2019 to focus on family life, while carrying on writing beauty content for T&C as a contributing editor. “I think what’s amazing about beauty is that in its arena, you can really only be a skeptic for so long,” she says. “There will always be a product that will make you believe.”
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Hannah Lazatin
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Hannah is originally from Pampanga and from a big, close-knit family who likes to find a reason to get together at the dinner table. Experiences inspire her. “Once, at a restaurant, I received an interpretation of my second name ‘Celina,’ and it meant 'someone who tries everything once' and that is me through and through,” she says. As for the job, she wants her “readers to be inspired by the stories of the people we feature and to move them to reach for greater things.”
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