Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC) and its subsidiaries continue to support vulnerable Filipinos during the COVID-19 pandemic. On the first week of June, the group has reached a milestone P350 million in donations of key anti-COVID-19, namely, food, water, medicines and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

These donations have made its way towards families across marginalized communities all over the country, particularly those not covered by the government’s social amelioration packages.

“Over the last few weeks, the group has been seeking out the more vulnerable sectors who are experiencing the highest degree of socio-economic marginalization,” said Melody del Rosario, president of Metro Pacific Investment Foundation (MPIF), the infrastructure conglomerate’s corporate social responsibility arm.

“These segments include persons with disabilities, informal settlers, senior citizens, pregnant and lactating mothers, and the indigenous minorities amidst the COVID-19 crisis,” she noted.

Since the start of the nationwide lockdown last March 15, corporate foundations of the group have banded together to provide PPEs for frontliners, set up quarantine facilities, hand out food, medicines and other aid to poor families, even as their own operations were severely affected by the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

‘Bayanihan’ community efforts

While more than 35,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in the country, it is yet unknown how many others have been indirectly affected by the virus. As the government strains to contain its spread, many Filipinos are left jobless as a result of the ensuing community quarantine.

Tulong Kapatid, the corporate social responsibility alliance of foundations and companies under the MVP Group of Companies, have announced that it is extending aid to augment the government’s initiatives.

Building a veritable alliance with other charitable organizations, Metro Pacific Investments Foundation (MPIF) teamed up with One Meralco Foundation, Alagang Kapatid Foundation Inc., Maynilad Water, MetroPac Movers Inc., and PLDT-Smart Foundation to distribute thousands of relief packages containing rice, noodles, canned goods, bread, milk, coffee, and hygiene packs to help underprivileged families cope with the extended community quarantine.

In addition, consumer companies such as Unilever Philippines, Nutriline Inc., Kopiko, and Sari Roti have contributed their products as part of the relief goods.

Reaching out to the Underserved: Homeless individuals and some standed, laid-off workers residing in Taft were provided relief packs by Metro Pacific Investments Foundation through Alagang Kapatid Foundation Inc.

The donations have helped over 4,000 families in Brgy. Bagbag, Novaliches, Quezon City, San Lorenzo Ruiz Parish in Culliat Quezon City, Catmon, Malabon, San Jose Manggagawa Parish in Marikina; Old Balara, Sitio Barimbao, Barangay Tandang Sora, Barangay Payatas, all in Quezon City, San Pedro, Laguna, Interior Ilaya, Alabang, Zambales, and Caloocan.

MPIF also responded to families stricken by fire in Happy Land, Tondo, Manila, Brgy. Tonsuya Malabon, and Brgy. Addition Hills by providing relief goods and sleeping kits containing mats and blankets. 500 relief packs, 300 faceshields, and 600 bottles of water were donated by the group to 300 waste management teams in Quezon City. MPIC also donated 1,000 sacks of rice and 1,000 grocery packs to the province of Cavite, through Gov. Jonvic Remulla.

The MPIC group has likewise been directing relief programs towards persons with disabilities and senior citizens in Payatas, informal settlers in the Bagbag Cemetery and other areas, stranded and laid-off workers who are homeless in Taft, and the indigenous community of Aetas in Zambales, prioritizing senior citizens and pregnant and breastfeeding moms.

 Supporting the livelihood of Filipinos

Aside from Tulong Kapatid initiatives, companies under MPIC have increased their efforts to aid various beneficiaries amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Among these, the MPIF launched OPLANILAO this week in the province of Batangas, committing a budget for short-term and long-term projects to help support beneficiaries in the tourism sector and alleviate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their livelihoods. The first wave of the program included distributing around 500 relief packs and vitamins to local resort staff, tourism workers, and TESDA-accredited wellness therapists for the community.

Meanwhile, Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC) has implemented livelihood projects with 18 fisherfolk organizations in Cordova through making motorized fishing boats. They have likewise provided livelihood projects such as Bigasan ng Bayan, Honda Mega Marine Engine, and 7.5 Robin Marine Engine to eight organizations in Cebu City.

In addition, MPTC donated 350 beds to the Department of Public Works and Highways to support the “Heal As One” quarantine facilities in the Philippine Convention Center (PICC) and is still implementing free toll fees to medical frontliners.

OMF also mobilized its ‘From Farmers to the Frontliners’ initiative, sourcing fresh vegetables from Cordillera farmers to provide frontliners in Metro Manila COVID-19 referral hospitals with healthy nourishment. MPIF carried out a similar program, sourcing 8,000 kgs of fresh vegetables from local farmers’ cooperatives to include in relief packs for marginalized communities.

Maynilad incessantly provides water sources for drinking, decontamination, and sanitizing, among others, to several LGUs, hospitals and medical institutions, and government offices.

Global Business Power (GBP) has facilitated the immediate remittance of P15.32M to the Iloilo City government, representing the Energy Regulations 1-94 (ER 1-94) fund share of Iloilo City from the electricity sales of GBP’s subsidiaries, Panay Energy Development Corporation and Panay Power Corporation. Likewise, they supported their host community, Brgy. Ingore in La Paz Iloilo City, through facilitating the release of its ER 1-94 fund share amounting to P10.94M.

These funds will be utilized for COVID-19 response to help local government units in their fight against the pandemic, in accordance with the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act. Projects include access to protective personal equipment (PPEs) for frontliners, essentials and mass testing.

GBP has also donated P1M to the local government of Cebu Province to help with their countryside development, the province’s primary focus as it transitioned to General Community Quarantine starting May 16.