Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company (Metrobank), through its corporate social responsibility arm, Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) and the Ty Family foundation, the GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI), awarded P20 million worth of financial assistance to 36 development organizations during the annual Anniversary Grants Turnover ceremony last September 7, 2018 at the Metrobank Plaza Auditorium, Makati City.
Metrobank Chairman Arthur Ty, together with GTFI President and and Federal Land Chairman Alfred Ty and MBFI President and GTFI Executive Director Aniceto Sobrepeña led the ceremonies while Department of Health Secretary Francisco Duque III graced the event as the Guest of Honor.
MBFI and GTFI work with socio-civic organizations, non-government organizations and government agencies for the implementation of programs and projects for the underprivileged and marginalized sectors towards the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The grants program’s priority thrusts are captured by the acronym HEAL — health, education, arts, and livelihood.
“It is easy to think that small gestures of love and service might not go very far in solving the country’s pressing problems. There will always be much to do, but very little act leaves a big impact towards realizing a better country, a better nation,” said Sobrepeña.
One of the 36 beneficiaries that received assistance from GTFI is Plan International, Inc. for the construction of three (3) Barangay Health Stations with birthing facilities in Western Samar and Maguindanao. When completed, the health station will give 6,550 locals access to primary and maternal health care.
On the other hand, MBFI’s grant to the Office of the Vice President’s flagship program Angat Buhay will help install a functional electrical water pump machine in Villa Fria Elementary School and provide hygiene kits to more than 1,000 children in eight (8) elementary schools in Agutaya, Palawan.
Accessible and quality education
Aiding students in Siayan Zamboanga del Norte, GTFI, on the other hand, is funding Yellow Boat of Hope Foundation, Inc.’s construction of a female dormitory that will serve as a halfway home for students who spend hours of land travel to reach the school. In line with GTFI’s goal to ensure access to quality education, the dormitory will save the students from the troubles of traveling to unsafe and long terrains during the weekday.
MBFI continues to invest in education programs seeking to improve the conditions of students and teachers according to needs specific to a community. MBFI, through the Philippine Foundation for Science and Technology, Inc., is providing 600 public school chemistry teachers in NCR, Benguet, Quezon, Eastern Samar, Bohol and Maguindanao with Hands-On, Minds-On Microscale Chemistry (HOMOMICH) kits complementing the K-12 curriculum. Through plenary lectures, discussions, demonstrations and hands-on activities, the program seeks to develop teaching approaches of local science educators.
Healing through arts
As arts is also seen as a tool for healing, MBFI supports Pahingalayan ng Bayani, a creative retreat for Filipino soldiers seeking for a safe space and peaceful respite from stress and anxiety using different art modalities. ArtPsych Circle, Inc.’s, a civil society organization composed of psychologists and psychology practitioners, program primarily caters to soldiers wounded in action in need of psychological assistance.
As a continuing partnership, MBFI gave grants to Hineleban Foundation for technical trainings, values formation and provision of supplies and equipment to indigenous coffee farmers in Bukidnon. Hineleban’s advocacy to reforest the high mountain ranges of Mindanao is attained by providing the locals with sustainable livelihoods through the Transformational Business Partnerships model.
MBFI is also supporting Caritas Margins’ entrepreneurial skills trainings for selected urban poor communities in NCR and CALABARZON as well as their product development coaching for partner micro-enterprises and improvement of some of their kiosks and stores.
Established in 1979, MBFI, through its Grants Program, continues to forge more partnerships with like-minded organizations who share in their mission in helping heal the Filipino one grant at a time.