SANDbox: Ilocos Norte's new creative, co-working space


Feb. 23, 2022 ...

Ilocos Norte's "SANDbox" is anticipated to serve Ilokano learners, entrepreneurs, and the youth, by offering a creative and co-working space for capacity development and flexible working as it is scheduled to open on February 24, Thursday.

Initiated by Mr. Ferdinand Alexander "Sandro" A. Marcos, the province's first "SANDbox" located in Pagudpud town aims to support learners who need access to the Internet and e-learning technologies, enhance creativity among the youth, and provide a working space for local entrepreneurs.

"The pandemic has ultimately pushed us to create an alternative work setup that prioritizes the safety of all but does not compromise productivity. With the increasing demand for coworking spaces, not only here in Ilocos Norte but also around the world, we've come up with this project to assist students and start-ups by providing them with a steady and safe learning and work space," Mr. Marcos explained.

Due to COVID-19, remote learning and alternative work arrangements have become more entrenched in the new normal, with many in the academic and business sectors trying to continually reconfigure their setups based on the specific needs of stakeholders.

"SANDbox" is made out of a repurposed container van and has features such as indoor study and working desks, an outdoor and roof deck seating area, and kitchen and bathroom amenities.

More importantly, to effectively address the digital demands of Ilokano students and entrepreneurs, "SANDbox" offers free WiFi connectivity using fiber optic technology to reach the fastest Internet speed available at present.

"The most important thing of all, 'SANDbox' will ensure the continuity and sustainability of both education and business, and we are currently working to expand this project to reach more Ilokanos," Mr. Marcos said.

A former economic consultant of the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte, Mr. Sandro Marcos has been instrumental in providing livelihood opportunities to thousands of Ilokano who were most affected by the sudden loss of income and livelihood amidst the continuing pandemic.