To help affected communities and families cope with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Philippines’ largest integrated company, PLDT, has pledged support to the RiceAid campaign of the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP).
The campaign, which aims to provide 10-kg packs of rice to affected communities, is seen to benefit 6,000 families in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, and Laguna. For its part, PLDT will provide rice packs to 500 beneficiary families in Manila and Cavite.
“As communities face the challenges posed by the recent resurgence of the pandemic in the NCR Plus areas, we are helping provide assistance to affected families by supporting PBSP’s RiceAid campaign. We hope that this will help ease the anxiety among families, about securing their basic needs. It is our commitment to support these families, especially amid such a difficult time,” said PLDT Community Relations Head Katherine P. Diaz De Rivera.
To implement the RiceAid campaign, PBSP partnered with two community-based organizations namely, the Samahan ng Nagkakaisang Pamilya ng Pantawid (SNPP), which is an organization of parents and parent-leaders of the 4Ps Program; and the Kasagana Ka-an, which is an organization that provides services for urban poor women and micro-entrepreneurs.
The organizations identified priority recipients and helped distribute these donations to their members amid the restricted mobility due to the quarantine.
“From SNPP Manila, we are extremely grateful to the blessings that you have provided us. This is a big help for us, especially to the families severely affected by the community lockdowns. This reassures us that we have food on the table, which we can share with our families and loved ones,” said Anna Luna, one of the beneficiaries from Sta. Ana, Manila.
Rice packs are sourced from farmer cooperatives and social enterprises, including farmers under the BuyLocal program of PLDT’s wireless unit, Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart).
A portion of the 6,000-pack commitment of PBSP was sourced from Balungao, Pangasinan, and will benefit over a thousand families from Quezon City and San Jose del Monte and Guiguinto, Bulacan.
“Under the Corporate RICEponsibility initiative of PLDT and Smart, we are able to increase the income of smallholder farmers and provide them access to affordable capital through Smart’s BuyLocal Program. At the same time, we are able to reach out to families facing food insecurity due to the community quarantine through PBSP’s RiceAid program. We hope that our help goes a long way as these families cope amid the pandemic,” said Smart Community Partnerships Head Steph Orlino.
"Three weeks after we have launched the campaign, we have already distributed 3,275 10-kg packs. We will continue to do this, and we hope we can get more support from our members and partners. Our resources, when pooled together, makes a big difference. It is at these times that collective action is really needed. Thank you to all our donors and PLDT for quickly responding to our call," said PBSP OIC-Director for Operations, Kristine Rivadelo.
The funds used for PLDT’s rice pack donations were from PBSP-Motolite’s Balik-Baterya Program. Launched in 2006, the program involves the collection of used lead-acid batteries (ULABs) for proper recycling and production of new automotive and industrial batteries and for various corporate social responsibility projects.
The support of PLDT to PBSP’s RiceAid program underscores the commitment of the company and its affiliates, to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDGs #1 No Poverty and #2 Zero Hunger to create a better quality of life. [END]
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