In 1998, Edwin Santiago wanted to continue the humanitarian efforts of his parents by anonymously giving back by donating clothes to orphanages, funding senior homes, giving books to schools, and purchasing hundreds of slippers for children living in the streets.
In 2009, Edwin began brainstorming ways to implement a more sustainable effort that would engage his friends and network. Believing in the power of education, and the correlation between literacy and poverty, he dreamed of building a library which would provide tools to learn and give underprivileged kids access to books, educational toys, computers, and the internet.
As his ideas grew bigger and bigger, 101 Heroes was born. Initially designed to illicit the help of 101 of his closest family and friends, the response quickly passed the 101 goal. Today, 101 Heroes is made up of hundreds of donors and participants.
The Pendleton-Goldman Learning Center (PGLC), a 2,400 square foot library and computer center in Marilao, Bulacan was the initial project and garnered support and enthusiasm from friends and strangers who wanted to make a difference. Donations, both large and small, poured in from over 200 donors. The Pendleton-Goldman Learning Center was dedicated on February 26, 2010 with over 20,000 books and 13 brand new computers - a remarkable achievement for an organization that had only been formed 12 months earlier!
Building on the success of the PGLC, and witnessing the tremendous impact it was having on the children and the local community, Edwin was inspired to continue the work of 101 Heroes by constructing more learning centers in the Philippines and Kenya.
Within six short years, 101 Heroes has built eight learning centers:
The library has several programs and amenities, including:
As interest and support continue to grow, 101 Heroes continues to expand its projects in order to impact more lives of children around the world. With your help, more children will have access to education and hope for a better future.
Edwin believes that everyone has their own way of giving back to others. 101 Heroes is his way of giving back and sharing the gift of education with thousands of underprivileged children.