The Aboitiz Group, through corporate social responsibility arm Aboitiz Foundation, continues to assist small and medium enterprises and “micropreneurs” with sustainable livelihood initiatives that aim to help alleviate poverty in the country.
In 2019, the Aboitiz Foundation disbursed over P200 million in microfinance loans through the Center for Agriculture and Rural Development Inc.’s Adopt-A-Branch (P154 million) and Wholesale Fund (P52.8 million) programs. CARD is a microfinance non-government organization. About 6,434 customers and 27 partner cooperatives and associations benefitted from both programs.
“Our enterprise development program creates sustainable livelihood and enterprises that generate jobs and create entrepreneurs,” said Aboitiz Foundation president and COO Maribeth Marasigan.
“In 2019, we scaled up our efforts by providing business incubation support to selected cooperatives nationwide. This support covers a wider range of assistance from organizational strengthening to business operations efficiency and marketing to increase their level of productivity and further generate employment. We look forward to an even more productive year in 2020,” Marasigan said.
The Adopt-A-Branch program, is being implemented in Benguet, Davao, Albay and Tarlac. It provides easy, affordable access, and a friendly experience to microfinance clients who mostly come from rural and unbanked areas. The Wholesale Fund program meantime, provides financing support to partner cooperatives in their business operations, alongside several capability building and livelihood skills training sessions.
Aside from the Adopt-A-Branch and Wholesale Fund programs, over 30 organizations were also provided with starter business kits and for farmers, post-harvest facilities.
“We are thankful to the Aboitiz Foundation and Pilmico for the opportunity to become Pilmico yellow corn suppliers,” said Larry Coracol, chairperson of Iligan City-based Hindang Banana Farmers Multi-Purpose Cooperative. Pilmico is the food subsidiary of the Aboitiz Group.
Coracol is extremely grateful for the huge opportunity given to their cooperative.
“This is important to us farmers because this project gives us hope here in Hindang. Rest assured we will strive to build on our cooperative and help other farmers,” Coracol said.
Under capacity-building, 290 corn, cacao, and cut flower farmers and 551 cooperative leaders and members received value-added training, 41 community organizations received organizational-strengthening training and 14 organizations underwent business continuity planning.
Enterprise development is one of the Aboitiz Foundation’s three focus areas, the other two being education and environment.
Since its inception in 1988, the Aboitiz Foundation’s corporate social responsibility interventions have evolved from one-time donations to carefully-designed programs that empower its beneficiaries to pursue their aspirations.
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