As an annual tradition, GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI), together with Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) held a simultaneous distribution of “Bags of Blessing” on the day of Chinese New Year, January 25, 2020. This year, a total of 25 cities and municipalities across NCR, Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao were chosen to serve as distribution areas wherein another P10 million worth of food packages were distributed to 10,000 families.
The main event was held at the Universidad de Manila in the City of Manila, where 400 families from the city received assistance. The gift-giving activity was led by Metrobank Group chairman Arthur Ty; Federal Land chairman and GTFI president Alfred Ty; GTFI honorary chair Mary Ty; GTFI vice president Anjanette Dy Buncio; and Metrobank Foundation president Aniceto Sobrepeña. They were joined by City of Manila Vice Mayor Dra. Honey Lacuna; Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) regional director for NCR Vicente Gregorio Tomas; and Manila Department of Social Welfare director Ma. Asuncion Fugoso.
The Bags of Blessing is the brainchild of the late Metrobank Group founder and chairman Dr. George Ty Siao Kian. Since its inception in 2011, it has become an instrument in giving back to underprivileged families and providing an opportunity for them to take part in the Chinese New Year celebration.
The inspiration behind this activity is the traditional ang-pao, a red envelope containing cash used to deliver best wishes, luck, and good energy. Instead of cash-giving, specially designed red bags containing P1,000 worth of food packages—rice, canned goods, milk, sugar, noodles, and other basic commodities—are distributed to indigent families.
“Bags of Blessing is really about giving back to the community. It’s trying to share what you have, and hopefully it puts some meaning and difference in their lives,” shared GTFI vice president Anjanette Dy Buncio.
Beneficiaries were carefully selected by DSWD and the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) through its network of dioceses and archdioceses. Other than belonging to the status of living below the poverty line, families affected by recent calamities, Indigenous Peoples (IPs), and non-beneficiaries of DSWD’s Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) were also given priority.
“Sharing and reaching out to our neighbors is not a novel act for the organization. Heart for community has always been at the core of what we do and Bags of Blessing, which is now on its eighth year, is rooted in that very idea. Amidst the festivities of the Chinese New Year, we aim to provide aid to those in the peripheries of society,” said MBFI president and GTFI executive director Aniceto Sobrepeña.
The leaders and employees from the network of Metrobank branches as well as the different subsidiaries and affiliates of GT Capital Holdings and the Metrobank Group participated in the series of gift-giving activities. Key partners also include the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) who provided security and logistical support, in coordination with concerned local government units and Catholic archdioceses.
In Metro Manila, distributions were also held at the City of San Juan, Makati City, Muntinlupa City, and Las Piñas City. In Luzon, distributions were carried out at San Nicolas, Ilocos Norte; Dagupan City, Pangasinan; Baguio City, Benguet; Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija; Baliwag, Bulacan; Porac, Pampanga; Imus City, Cavite; San Pablo City, Laguna; Lipa City, Batangas; and Legazpi City, Albay. In Visayas, areas included Naval, Biliran; San Remigio, Antique; Bacolod City, Negros Occidental; Cebu City, Cebu; Cordova, Cebu; and Tubigon, Bohol. In Mindanao, distributions were held at Cagayan de Oro City; Misamis Oriental; Davao City, Davao del Sur; Zamboanga City, Zamboanga del Sur; and Koronadal City, South Cotabato. All sites catered to 400 beneficiary families each.
Tags: 2020 Press Releases