Help Educate and Rear Orphans (HERO) Foundation, Inc. was established in 1988 by leaders of the business community in order to provide educational assistance to the children of our fallen or totally incapacitated soldiers. The majority of the families of these heroes relied solely on the father to provide for the needs of the entire family. Alas, when the soldier who is usually the father and breadwinner of the family makes the ultimate sacrifice for our country, the family is left with a very limited source of income. That is why HERO has made it its' mission to ensure that the children of our heroes will not only finish their education but will also be gainfully employed so that they may help their families live more comfortably and become productive members of society.
“Hindi ko nakilala si papa, kasi 1-year-old lang po ako nung nawala siya,” (I never got to know papa because I was only a year old when he passed away) shares Danica Talania, a 17-year-old twelfth grader from Jose Rizal University in Mandaluyong City.
While Danica vaguely remembers the details of his father -- Army Sergeant James Fabellan’s death in the line of duty, she’s far from being detached from him.
According to her family, Sgt. Fabellan was a huge music lover.
Danica relates, “sabi ni mama, nasa combo daw po si papa...kahit anong instrument kaya niya -- piano, gitara, tapos kumakanta rin daw po siya.” (Mama used to tell me that papa played in a military band. He can play any kind of instrument -- including the piano and guitar. He was even good at singing!)
Music, it seems, was Danica’s connection with her late father.
Whenever free, she tries to learn the latest songs on guitar, and play music with the band where she and her elder brother belong.
But more than a musician, Danica is a scholar of HERO Foundation.
How HERO Helps
HERO invites its former scholars turned professionals to give inspirational talks/seminars in regular general assemblies, and assists scholars in finding on-the-job training and employment opportunities.
Danica has nothing but gratefulness to the foundation, and to the people who extend their help to scholars like her. She shares, “Salamat. Siguro para sa iba, maliit na bagay lang po yung pagd-donate nila. Pero para sa amin, napakalaking tulong na po iyon para makapagtapos kami ng pag-aaral. As we give back, mag-aaral po kaming mabuti.” (Thank you. The donation might seem like a little matter for others. But for us, it goes a long way in helping us finish our studies.We can only study hard as a form of giving back.)
Despite the loss of a parent, HERO scholars continue to ‘soldier on’ with life. They do their best to finish their studies with flying colors, and hopefully fulfill their parents’ dreams for them to have a bright future, starting with a good education.
HERO Foundation aims to make this possible through accepting donations from its partner institutions, as well as from individuals who make it their personal advocacy to care for the plight of the military orphans.