GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI) and Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) reached out to thousands of families affected by the onslaught of recent typhoons Rolly and Ulysses. Implemented under its disaster relief and response program “Helping Hands,” the donation amounted to PhP 6 million.
GT Foundation and Metrobank Foundation, through its disaster response program “Helping Hands,” donate relief assistance worth PhP6 million to 60,000 individuals hardly affected by typhoons Rolly and Ulysses. Photo shows Metrobankers in South Luzon branches distributing food, water and hygiene kits to residents of Lopez, Quezon on November 19, 2020.
It is expected that a total of 60,000 individuals from hardly hit-provinces of Albay, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Catanduanes, Quezon, Batangas, Rizal, Isabela, and Cagayan, including Marikina City were to be given packed meals and relief goods.
From November 19 to 26, Metrobank branches in South Luzon were mobilized to distribute relief composed of rice, noodles, canned goods, water and hygiene kits—all packaged in reusable pails. They were able to assist 400 families from Lopez, Quezon and Lucena, City; 400 families from Lobo, Batangas and Batangas City; and 800 families from Guinobatan, Albay. Relief distribution will take place in the coming days to assist 700 families in Camarines Norte and 500 families in Camarines Sur.
On the other hand, the same assistance was rolled-out by the Metrobank North Luzon Branches from November 20 to 25 assisting 600 families in Cauayan City and Ilagan City, Isabela, and 600 families in Tuguegarao City, Cagayan.
GTFI and MBFI also provided financial support for a soup kitchen implemented by Manila Broadcasting Company DZRH’s Operation Tulong. The first round of the feeding activity was conducted in Virac and Bato, Catanduanes from November 10 to 16.
Portions of the donation were also coursed through Philippine STAR’s corporate social responsibility arm Operation Damayan, Alagang Kapatid Foundation, RMN Foundation, Operating Blessing Foundation Philippines and the Philippines National Police’s food bank.
Metrobank and GT Capital Holdings sustain support in curbing COVID-19 cases through a renewed partnership with GoNegosyo’s Project ARK, now focused on running pooled Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) testing. Coursed through Metrobank Foundation (MBFI), the companies’ corporate social responsibility arm, and the Ty family’s GT Foundation (GTFI), PhP4.5 million was donated to implement at least 3,000 runs of pooled testing for select individuals in Pasay City. GTFI president Alfred Ty led a virtual coordination meeting with GoNegosyo founder and Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion and Pasay City mayor Imelda Calixto-Rubiano on October 13 to discuss the initiative.
The pooled testing will compliment the local government’s efforts to screen micro and small entrepreneurs like carinderia and sari-sari store owners, public wet market tenants, and tricycle and jeepney drivers.
Earlier this year, MBFI and GTFI donated PhP10 million to purchase and distribute 22,220 antibody rapid test kits to the cities of Pasig, San Juan, Santa Rosa in Laguna, General Trias and Imus in Cavite and Lucban in Quezon. The kits were used to identify active COVID-19 cases and to determine recovered patients as potential donors for plasma therapy.
The donation is part of the consolidated PhP270 million contribution of the group to fund and support efforts to combat the pandemic and help those in need. The financial assistance has covered the following: construction of 10 molecular laboratories; purchase of personal protective equipment for healthcare and security frontliners; donation of RT-PRC testing kits to select government hospitals; support for Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation’s “Project Ugnayan;” implementation of feeding interventions to underprivileged families; installation of handwashing facilities to schools; provision of laptops and tablets to educators and learners; distribution of equipment for the reproduction of modules and learning materials; support the livelihoods of various communities and donation of 30 units of Toyota Vios to DOH for the mobility of healthcare frontliners and local government hospitals, among others.
GT Foundation and the Catholic Church, through the National Secretariat for Social Action (NASSA)/Caritas Philippines sign agreement for 2021 Bags of Blessing (BOB). GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI) and the NASSA/Caritas Philippines signed a partnership agreement for the conduct of the 2021 Bags of Blessing through a virtual signing of Memorandum of Agreement on October 27, 2020.
The ceremony was led by GTFI executive director Aniceto M. Sobrepeňa and NASSA/Caritas Philippines national director Most Reverend Jose Colin M. Bagaforo, D.D. Joining them were GTFI deputy executive director Nicanor L. Torres, Jr., GTFI assistant executive director Irene D. Labitad, NASSA/Caritas BOT vice chair Bishop Gerry Alminaza and NASSA/Caritas BOT member Bishop Honesto Ongtioco.
Bags of Blessing is a GTFI-led nationwide gift-giving activity initiated by the late Metrobank Group Chairman Dr. George Ty Siao Kian. It is held every Chinese New Year as a way of sustaining the tradition of sharing prosperity among thousands of indigent families nationwide. In 2021, the program will also seek to provide aid to the hardest hit sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic. It will reach out to 18,000 family beneficiaries through the distribution of food items in 33 sites nationwide.
Metrobank Foundation donated PhP18 million to Southern Philippines Medical Center through Ateneo de Davao University for the establishment of a molecular laboratory in Davao City. Photo above shows the proposed design of the facility. Once constructed and equipped, it will be able to run 200 samples per day with a turn-around time of three operating days.
Sustaining its mission to aid the government in responding to the need for expanded testing for COVID-19 and for other emerging and re-emerging infections, the Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) signs a memorandum of agreement with Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) for the construction of a fully equipped molecular laboratory with negative pressure at the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) in Davao City. MBFI donated an amount of PhP 18 million to construct the laboratory, capable of testing 200 samples per day for an 8-hour shift and with a result turn-around time of three operating days.
A virtual signing ceremony was held on October 1 with the presence of MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepeña, Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Leopoldo Vega, AdDU president Fr. Joel Tabora, SJ, and SPMC OIC Medical Center Chief Dr. Ricardo Audan.
The facility will be established and operated in accordance with all applicable laws, including the standards of the DOH, Food and Drug Administration, and other applicable regulatory agencies and shall be accredited by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) as a COVID-19 laboratory facility.
To date, MBFI has supported the construction and equipping of 10 molecular laboratories in the country amounting to a total of PhP61 million. These include the largest molecular laboratory capable of detecting COVID-19 and other contagious diseases at the former Philippine Red Cross Headquarters in Port Area Manila. MBFI also supported the “Test, Trace, and Treat” Network through the Ayala Healthcare Holdings, Inc., the healthcare arm of the Ayala Group, in building seven Biosafety Level 2 modular laboratories in Qualimed hospitals. Another molecular laboratory will soon be inaugurated at the Manila Doctors Hospital through a donation from GT Foundation—the Ty family foundation.
Said donation is part of the consolidated PhP220 million contribution of Metrobank and GT Capital Holdings to fund and support efforts to combat the pandemic and help those in need. The financial assistance has covered the following: purchase of personal protective equipment for healthcare and security frontliners; donation of RT-PRC testing kits, through Manila HealthTek, to select government hospitals; support for “Project Ugnayan” led by the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation; distribution of meals and food packs to underprivileged families; donation of antibody rapid test kits through GoNegosyo’s Project ARK; construction of molecular laboratories; and donation of 30 units of Toyota Vios to DOH for the mobility of healthcare frontliners and local government hospitals, among others.
The virtual signing agreement held last September 4, 2020 was led by Metrobank Foundation president Aniceto Sobrepena (top center), Pacific Paint (Boysen) Philippines vice president for operation Justin Ongsue (top left), Boysen vice president for Marketing Ruben Cueto (top right) together with UST rector Rev. Fr. Richard Ang, O.P, UST dean of College of Architecture Arch’t Rodolfo Ventura (lower left), and NU president and chief executive officer Renato Carlos Ermita, Jr.
The Pacific Paint (Boysen) Philippines signed another partnership agreement with the Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) during a virtual signing of agreement held last September 4, 2020. Through a PhP 6.8 million scholarship fund, 15 architecture students will benefit from a 4-year scholarship assistance. The ceremony was attended by MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepena, Pacific Paint (Boysen) Philippines vice president for operation Justin Ongsue, vice president for marketing Ruben Cueto, and representatives from academic partners.
Started in 2005, the ‘MBFI-Pacific Paint (Boysen) Scholarship Program’ awards scholarship assistance to incoming 2nd year Architecture students from the University of the Philippines-Diliman and University of Santo Tomas (UST). For the 2nd phase of the program, the National University (NU) was added as a new academic partner. Each of the scholars from the three-partner universities will receive a fixed amount of subsidy to pay for their tuition and other fees. UST rector Rev. Fr. Richard Ang, O.P. and NU president and chief executive officer Renato Carlos Ermita, Jr. were present during the virtual ceremonies.
In the last 15 years, MBFI-Boysen Scholarship Program has already produced a total of 103 graduates and has awarded a total of 113 scholarship grants to 2nd year college students from the UP Diliman and UST.
The virtual turnover ceremony was led by Metrobank and MBFI chairman Arthur Ty, Metrobank president and MBFI trustee Fabian Dee and MBFI president and GTFI executive director Aniceto Sobrepeña on September 4, 2020 which was attended by key officers and representatives from beneficiary organizations.
Empowerment through dynamic partnerships has been at the heart of Metrobank’s anniversary for the many decades. This 2020, this rings true as it celebrates 58 meaningful years of being the people’s ally in progress. A total of PhP 30 million worth of grants was turned over to social development partners during its annual giving-back tradition, “Anniversary Grants Turnover Ceremony,” on September 4. To adhere to protocols, the event was held virtually attended by key officers and representatives from beneficiary organizations. Serving as Guest of Honor was Department of Education (DepEd) secretary Leonor Magtolis-Briones.
Department of Education secretary Leonor Magtolis-Briones
During this unprecedented period, Metrobank shares in the aspiration of helping Filipinos, most especially the vulnerable and underserved, to get back on their feet. To sustain its commitment to help the national government in addressing the effects and impact of the health crisis to many lives, said donation is added to the previous PhP220 million donation of the company which funded and supported efforts to combat the pandemic.
“The theme of this year’s event is collaboration. In these unusual times, our actions may be physically limited but through strategic partnerships, we can still achieve our objectives by working together,” said Metrobank and MBFI chairman Arthur Ty. “We at Metrobank have always looked at our anniversaries as an opportunity to give back and help the vulnerable and marginalized. There is a lot of need in our country right now but we hope that these small steps lead us to look to the future with some optimism and hope. And we’re grateful to our development partners for helping make this vision a reality,” he added.
Coursed through its social arm, Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) and Ty family’s GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI), this year’s batch of beneficiary organizations received financial aid to implement their programs on health, education, arts, livelihood, and nutrition.
One with the League to Promote Hand Hygiene
As a member of the League of Corporate Foundations (LCF), MBFI will support #LCFWinS: Lingap Eskwela sa Pandemya Program. Collaborating with fellow corporate foundations, WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) facilities will be constructed in select public schools nationwide in compliance to the ‘Guidelines on the Required Health Standards in Basic Education Offices and Schools’ (DepEd Order No. 014 s. 2020) which covers the protection of health, safety, and well-being of students, teachers, and personnel. To complement the facility, hygiene kits and supplies will also be provided.
MBFI’s donation will benefit almost 29 thousand students from 20 schools in Pasig, Mandaluyong, Quezon City, and Marikina, including La Union, Bulacan, Laguna, Rizal, Zamboanga City and Davao City.Paddling Farther to Reach More Geographically-Isolated Schools
To reach out to more geographically-isolated schools, MBFI renewed its 7-year partnership with the Yellow Boat of Hope Foundation. This time, not only to provide physical access to education for schoolchildren in the form or boats and school dormitories, MBFI will also provide in-kind donation of printers, copiers and risograph machines to aid teachers in the reproduction of the modules and learning materials. The donation shall benefit more than 20 thousand students from 39 schools in the provinces of Cebu, Romblon, Zamboanga Sibugay, Camarines Sur, Sorsogon, Pampanga, Zambales, Bulacan, Basilan, Siargao, Tarlac, Capiz, Zamboanga del Sur, and Sulu.
Photo from the Department of Education
Meanwhile, another donation of printers, copiers and risograph machines will go directly to select Department of Education public schools to benefit more than 23 thousand students from Manila, Navotas, Makati, Laguna, Sarangani, Leyte, Antique, Dipolog, Nueva Ecija, Iligan, Cavite, Iloilo, and Tarlac.Art Community Gets Boost of Support
To further solidify support for the local art community, MBFI extended cash assistance to 200 visual artists whose main source of living was impacted by the crisis. Dubbed as MADE CARES (Metrobank Art & Design Excellence–Community Aid and Relief for Emergency Situations), past awardees of MADE Painting and Sculpture Recognition Programs, including eligible Filipino painters and sculptors have applied for the amelioration program.Ministry to Curb Poverty
Another partnership renewed is that of the International Care Ministries (ICM). As a non-profit organization, ICM provides help, hope and change to impoverished families in Visayas and Mindanao. Through their integrated poverty solutions, 100 thousand ultra-poor Filipinos are assisted each year.
The donation will support their Transform and Prevail programs aimed at training and mentoring families living in ultra-poor communities on livelihood building skills. Transform is ICM’s core strategic program, designed to address the wide range of needs faced by families living in ultrapoverty. Transform starts by creating supportive environments for hope to grow, then invests in building capacity for sustainable progress out of poverty. Prevail, on the other hand, is a support network for savings groups that promotes sustainability towards greater financial inclusion. The assistance will cater to 222 households (1,110 individuals) from six (6) communities in the province Cebu.‘Kindness Kitchen’ Goes South
From its previous donation to support the ‘Kindness Kitchen’ program of Ronald McDonald’s House Charities of the Philippines (RMHC) that served hot meals to 40 thousand individuals from NCR last April 2020, MBFI will fund additional feeding activities. This time, families and frontliners from the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, and Lapu Lapu, and Davao province will be reached out, other than NCR.GT Foundation Steps Up Tech-Voc Program
GTFI, the family foundation of the late Dr. George Ty Siao Kian, believes that quality education and equitable healthcare are basic needs that should be made accessible to the underprivileged. Since 2009, philanthropic initiatives of the family are realized through GTFI’s strategic development programs in the areas of health, education, and technology and innovation.
Through its Scholarships for Technical-Vocational Education Program (STEP), out-of-school youth and underprivileged students can gain access to quality education that enable them to gain immediate employment. Scholars of some of the best technical-vocational education and training schools in the country with industry tie-ups for guaranteed employment are supported. The virtual event served as an opportunity to renew the partnership with Dualtech Training Center, Don Bosco Technical Institute, and Punlaan School. Over a period of three (3) years, 150 Dualtech scholars will be supported to meet the manpower demands of specific industries. On the other hand, the 3-year partnership with the Don Bosco Technical Institute will support the technical skills education of 135 scholars from their 3 centers. Lastly, 24 scholars of Punlaan School will have the opportunity to gain proper skills training on hospitality and culinary arts through a 4-year agreement.Extending Healthcare Privileges to Indigents
Manila Doctors Hospital (MDH) serves as the healthcare affiliate of MBFI which offers social services to indigent patients such as hospitalization and consultation subsidies, medical missions, and other health-related interventions in select communities. Through the annual financial support of GTFI, the corporate social responsibility programs of MDH such as quality non-discriminatory inpatient and outpatient services and surgical operations will reach out to more indigent Filipinos in need of medical assistance. Laptops and Tablets for Blended Learning
To complement the national government’s groundwork for a blended learning approach for the school year, GTFI launched Project PERFORM (Provision of Equipment to Reinforce Facility of Online and Remote Modality of Learning). The program is targeting to give laptops and tablets to more than 600 qualified students from public and techvoc schools, as well as GTFI and MBFI scholars.
“Sharing has been at the core of Metrobank’s anniversary for the last 58 years. Grants turned over to our partners are intended to benefit those whom they are helping. Our donations are expressions of gratefulness ingrained in our institutional culture,” expressed MBFI president and GTFI executive director Aniceto Sobrepeña. “As we pursue these ideals, we do so honoring the memory of our founder Dr. George Ty Siao Kian. He envisioned a bequest that would go well beyond his lifetime, enabling and ennobling men to build a world where sound health, quality education, and productive lives are everyone’s portion,” he concluded.
The Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) allocates PhP 1 million to aid the local art community which suffered loss of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Through its program called Metrobank Art & Design Excellence-Community Aid and Relief for Emergency Situations or MADE CARES, MBFI aims to support 200 visual artists with a cash assistance worth PhP 5,000.00 each. MADE CARES is part of MBFI’s initiatives in reaching out to its stakeholders during this current health crisis.
Beneficiaries who are qualified for the cash assistance include past awardees of the annual MADE Painting and Sculpture recognition programs, as well as non-awardees who are Filipino painters and sculptors aged 18 years old and above. MBFI will also prioritize practicing visual artists whose income-generating art projects or livelihood were affected by the pandemic.
Painters and sculptors who receive regular salary from a public or private institution; are recipients of pension and other cash assistance from art and cultural institutions; or are currently involved in any income-generating projects are not eligible for the grant.Call for Grant Application
A total amount of PhP 115,000.00 was given last August 6, 2020 to the first batch of beneficiaries, composed of 23 members of the MADE-Network of Winners, the alumni organization of past MADE awardees.
The grant application for the remaining 177 slots is now open for both awardees and non-awardees of MADE. To register, applicants must fill-out the application form which can be accessed through bit.ly/MADECARES_application. The deadline for submission of application is on August 23, 2020.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Metrobank and GT Capital Holdings, through MBFI, donated PhP220 million to fund and support efforts to combat the health crisis and help those in need. The amount was allocated for the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPEs) to benefit healthcare and security frontliners; support for the production of RT-PCR testing kits through the Manila HealthTek; “Project Ugnayan” led by the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation; distribution of meals and food packs to underprivileged families; construction and equipping of molecular laboratories for the testing of cases in partnership with the Department of Health (DOH), Philippine Red Cross, and Ayala Group; and Go Negosyo’s Project ARK (Antibody Rapid test Kits) of the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship Foundation. Just recently, Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation donated 30 VIOS units for the mobility of healthcare frontliners of DOH and local government hospitals.
For further details, interested participants may contact Ms. Badet Macaraig through [email protected]; or visit MADE Facebook page @MADECompetition.
GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI) donated PhP1 million to Advancement for Rural Kids (ARK) for their project Feed Back—a vegetable farming program during this time of pandemic aimed at stemming hunger, keeping families healthy and together, and making communities achieve food security and resiliency. The donation will particularly benefit 416 families from the farming and fishing communities located in barangay Bogtong, Busuanga, Palawan; barangay Borac, Coron, Palawan; and barangay Traciano, Dumarao, Capiz. A virtual ceremonial signing of the Pledge of Donation was held on July 24 led by GTFI executive director and Metrobank Foundation president Aniceto Sobrepeña, ARK CEO Ayesha Vera-Yu; ARK trustee Philip Soliven; and GTFI assistant executive director Nicanor Torres, Jr.
“I am very thankful that GT Foundation partnered with us on this. Thank you for wanting to make sure that our kapwa (co) farmers, kapwa fisher folks, kapwa Filipinos are not going hungry and that they are securing their health particularly at this time of the pandemic,” said Vera-Yu.
In a span of 12 weeks, Feed Back will distribute vegetable baskets to participating farmers and fisher folks enabling them of three meals for a family of four. To ensure sustainability, the program’s next phase aims to empower the communities to grow their own produce for their household consumption at the same time create opportunities for them to earn a living by selling their excess produce to neighboring villages and towns. This will secure a family’s food, good health and enable them to participate in a secondary market.
“We have been praying that we get involved in agriculture and school-nutrition. The fact that we needed to do something to help our rural farmers and fisher folks to have something to eat during lockdown is a very important subject. Allow us to be able to do something in the areas that we would have wanted to move into,” said Sobrepeña.
The donation is part of over a PhP220 million contribution by Metrobank and GT Capital Holdings Group to fund and support efforts to combat the pandemic and help those in need. The amount was allocated for the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPEs) to benefit healthcare and security frontliners; “Project Ugnayan” led by the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation; distribution of meals and food packs to underprivileged families; construction and equipping of molecular laboratories for the testing of cases in partnership with the Department of Health, Philippine Red Cross, and Ayala Group; and Go Negosyo’s Project ARK (Antibody Rapid test Kits) of the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship Foundation. Just recently, Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation donated 30 units of Toyota Vios to DOH for the mobility of healthcare frontliners and local government hospitals.
The Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) and the GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI), together with Pacific Paint (Boysen) Philippines, commended this year’s batch of scholars during a series of virtual Graduates’ Conversations on June 30, July 2 and 7, 2020.
A total of 14 scholars finished their undergraduate degrees from Manila Tytana Colleges (MTC), University of the Philippines Diliman (UP), and University of Santo Tomas (UST). They are the recipients of the GTFI-Manila Tytana Colleges Youth for Excellence and Service (YES) and MBFI-Pacific Paint (Boysen) scholarship programs. Out of the 14 scholars, eight (8) graduated cum laude.
The virtual encounter, which honored the accomplishments of the scholars, was led by MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepena. “There are so many challenging events happening around us now and I’m glad that our scholars did not give up and continued to become strong individuals. We are all proud of your accomplishments and we appreciate everyone for attending this online activity,” said Sobrepena in his welcome remarks.
The management congratulated the scholars and provided hope and encouragement as their in-person graduations have been canceled or postponed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The scholars also shared their stories and life journeys and recalled the people who helped them along the way. They outlined their plans on vision boards to guide their next steps in life.
Catherine Ryanne Naraga, a Bachelor of Science in Accountancy graduate, from Manila Tytana Colleges, considers her GT YES scholarship as one of the greatest blessings that enabled her to pursue Accountancy. Her family had a rough time supporting her college education because of her father’s illness that prevented him from coming back to work as a seaman. Her mother, who works in their barangay has not enough income to support their daily expenses. In this time of pandemic, they only relied on her father’s monthly pension and cash allowance from the local government unit. Now that she has finished college, her main plan is to focus on reviewing for the CPA licensure exam and look for a stable job.
Marian Joyce Dacquel, a Bachelor of Science in Architecture graduate, cum laude, from the University of the Philippines Diliman, shared that ever since 3rd-year high school she already envisioned herself becoming a successful architect. These all came true when she was granted the MBFI-Boysen scholarship program. Marian made sure to keep track of her academic performance and continued to be a consistent ‘college and university scholar’ throughout her five years taking Architecture. Marian recently passed the 2020 LAE and got qualified to UP Law. Aside from being an architect, she believes that practicing law is one of the best ways to give service to the country.
Karen Elyssa Eloriaga, a Bachelor of Science in Architecture graduate, cum laude, from the University of Santo Tomas, said that the scholarship served more than just financial support for her college education; it motivated her to excel in academics and reminded her that God works miracles in her life. Despite the day to day adversities, she has experienced in the university and during this current pandemic, she remains optimistic and strong in pursuing her dreams of becoming an architect. In the future, she hopes to join an architecture firm where she can gain substantial experience and earn a stable income. After this, Karen wishes to give back to the community by building social housing and providing scholarships for the poor.
Also present in the three-day graduate’s conversations were MTC president and former University of the Philippines Diliman chancellor, Dr. Sergio Cao, MBFI executive director, Nicanor Torres, Jr., MBFI assistant executive director Irene Labitad, Boysen vice president Engr. Ruben Cueto, Boysen marketing manager Vergel Dyoco, Boysen office manager Natalie Lee.
Reinforcing the vision of the Metrobank Group’s late Chairman Dr. George Ty Siao Kian to nurture the country’s future leaders, the online activity allowed the scholars to meet their benefactors and interact with their fellow scholars. Since 1995, the Metrobank Scholarship Program has been awarding financial grants to support deserving students through college. To date, the program has produced over 1,000 graduates in collaboration with its partner institutions and schools.
For more information on MBFI’s scholarship programs, please visit www.mbfoundation.org.ph.
Metrobank and GT Capital Holdings, through Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) and GT Foundation, Inc. (GTFI), donated PhP 5.6 million to Manila HealthTek, Inc., a private research and development company, for the distribution of UP-developed COVID-19 Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (rRT-PCR) detection kits. A total of 3,800 kits will be donated to the UP National Institutes of Health (UP-NIH), Maria Reyna-Xavier University Hospital in Cagayan de Oro City, and Ilocos Training and Regional Medical Center (ITRMC) in San Fernando City, La Union.
A virtual ceremonial signing of the Deed of Donation with Manila HealthTek, Inc. and beneficiary institutions was held on July 9 through the presence of HealthTek CEO Dr. Raul Destura, UP-NIH executive director and 2019 Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino Dr. Eva Maria Cutiongco-de La Paz, Xavier University president Fr. Roberto Yap, Maria Reyna-Xavier University Hospital OIC Director Sr. Evelyn Aguilar, and ITRMC Molecular Biology Laboratory section head Dr. Jimmy Rosales. It was Dr. Destura who led the team from UP-NIH and the Philippine Genome Center in the development of these low-cost kits.
“We have been working hard in supporting various initiatives to address and combat the effects of the pandemic since the start of the lockdown. Given the need for a gold standard in testing, we are privileged to support the very first Philippine developed testing kits for COVID19,” said MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepena. “We commend and admire the works of our local experts led by Dr. Destura and his team, together with the UP-NIH in the development, testing and production of these kits,” he added.
The donation is part of over a P220 million contribution by Metrobank and GT Capital Holdings Group to fund and support efforts to combat the pandemic and help those in need. The amount was allocated for the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPEs) to benefit healthcare and security frontliners; “Project Ugnayan” led by the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation; distribution of meals and food packs to underprivileged families; construction and equipping of molecular laboratories for the testing of cases in partnership with the Department of Health, Philippine Red Cross, and Ayala Group; and Go Negosyo’s Project ARK (Antibody Rapid test Kits) of the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship Foundation. Just recently, Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation donated 30 units of Toyota Vios to DOH for the mobility of healthcare frontliners and local government hospitals.