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BDO Foundation and UST Donors Construct School Buildings in Tacloban

BDO Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of BDO Unibank, has constructed two school buildings in San Jose Central School in Tacloban City, Leyte in partnership with private philanthropists from the University of Santo Tomas Medicine Class '79 and Soroptimist International Makati. 

The new two-storey, eight-classroom buildings were turned over on February 17 in an event attended by BDO Foundation program director Rose Espinosa, BDO Tacloban-Rizal Avenue branch head Lucille Yao, donors, local government officials and Department of Education heads. 

At the event, the donors also distributed food and toys to the pupils. 

The school building project is in keeping with BDO Foundation's disaster response advocacy and rehabilitation program in areas affected by Typhoon Yolanda. 

Like many structures in Tacloban, the buildings of San Jose Central School were destroyed by the supertyphoon. About 90 percent of its 98 classrooms have been damaged, and more than 120 students reportedly perished due to Yolanda's storm surge. 

The structures built by BDO Foundation and its partners replace the ones completely destroyed by the disaster. 

Through the donation of the school buildings, the partners aim to give underprivileged youth greater access to education and help rebuild the lives of their families. The new classrooms are furnished with teachers' desks, school chairs, blackboards and fans. 

The new buildings could also serve as evacuation centers should calamities hit the area. 

San Jose Central School is situated on a 2.2-hectare property with an athletic oval that serves as venue for interschool athletic competitions in Eastern Visayas. The academic institution accommodates approximately 4,000 students.

BDO Foundation and donors from the University of Santo Tomas Medicine Class '79 and Soroptimist International Makati have partnered for the construction of two school buildings with a total of eight classrooms for Typhoon Yolanda-stricken San Jose Central School in Tacloban City, Leyte.

Auto Brands with Best CSR Programs Recognized

Auto Brands with Best CSR Programs Recognized

The Society of Philippine Motoring Journalists (SPMJ) recognized the outstanding Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs in the automotive industry at the first-ever ‘Driven To Serve Awards’ held last 23 February 2017 at the Ceremonial Hall of the Marriott Grand Ballroom at Resorts World Manila.

The winners are as follows:


Platinum: Ford Philippines – Driving Skills For Life

Gold: Volkswagen Philippines – Child Safety Initiative 2015-2016

Gold: Honda Cars Philippines Inc. – Teensmart & 1-M Blue Eco-Safe Driving Campaign


Platinum: Toyota Motor Philippines – Toyota Motor School of Technology

Gold: Isuzu Philippines Corporation – TESDA-Isuzu Auto Mechanic Training Center

Silver: PGA Cars Inc. – Porsche Training & Recruitment Center Asia


Gold: Toyota Motor Philippines – Peñablanca Sustainable Reforestation Project

Silver: Isuzu Philippines Corporation – Annual CSR Projects on Environment 2002 to 2013

Silver: Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. – Batad Restoration Project 2012 & 2015


Platinum: Toyota Motor Philippines – GK Village in Sta. Rosa, Laguna

Silver: Nissan Philippines Inc. – Shelter Rebuild Drive with Habitat for Humanity

Silver: Ford Philippines – One Better World Project

Also given citations for their CSR efforts were Asian Carmakers Corporation (BMW Philippines), Auto Hub Group, Bermaz Auto Philippines (Mazda), Columbian Autocar Corporation (Kia), Hyundai Asia Resources Inc., and The Covenant Car Company (Chevrolet).

Winners were determined by a distinguished board of judges which included: Millie Dizon, chairperson of the International Public Relations Association based in the UK, and SVP of the marketing communications group of SM Retail; Rodrigo Franco, president and CEO of the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation; Edgardo Gapuz Lacson, chairman of the Employers Confederation of the Philippines; Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr., honorary chairman of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Dr. Cristina Padolina, president and chief academic officer of Centro Escolar University; Msgr. Pedro Quitorio, president of Aeropagus Communications.

“The first Driven To Serve Awards recognized the most outstanding from the already outstanding good deeds done through the past decade by the car makers and distributors. Unknown to many, the car industry participants have been very active in giving back to the community,” notes SPMJ president and Manila Bulletin executive editor Pinky Concha-Colmenares.

SPMJ founding chairman Ray Butch Gamboa adds, “We share the common goal of uplifting the lives of our fellow Filipinos, hence this latest project which we call Driven To Serve aims to recognize the best CSR programs of automotive companies.”

The 1st SPMJ Driven To Serve Awards received invaluable support from venue host Resorts World Manila, cooperating sponsor Manila North Tollways Corporation (MNTC), the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. (CAMPI), and Petron Corporation.

The Society of Philippine Motoring Journalists (SPMJ) is composed of established motoring journalists, editors, producers, publishers of respected publications and motoring shows on print, new media, television and radio.

BDO Volunteers Aid Typhoon Nina Victims over the Holidays

Officers and staff of BDO branches in Catanduanes, Albay and Camarines Sur conducted relief work for victims of Typhoon Nina during the Christmas and New Year holidays as part of efforts organized by BDO Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of BDO Unibank.

The volunteers mounted relief operations in various evacuation centers and distributed packs containing food, rice and water to more than 14,000 families to help them cope with the calamity.

BDO employees reached out to calamity victims in Buhi, Iriga City, Nabua, Pili and Sagnay in Camarines Sur; Libon, Malinao and Polangui in Albay; and Virac in Catanduanes.

The operations were led by BDO Catanduanes-Virac branch head Normilyn Marino, BDO Albay-Tabaco branch head Maria Yoradyl Adrales, BDO Iriga City branch head Jaime Verdida, BDO Camarines Sur-Nabua branch head Dina Haber, BDO Albay-Polangui branch head Jovy Reina Benipayo, BDO Legazpi City-Rizal Street branch head Armando Uy, BDO Camarines Sur-Pili branch head Gina Asinas and BDO Naga-Elias Angeles branch head Renato Tapel.

Often acting as first responders, BDO volunteers provide aid to victims of natural or man-made disasters all over the country. This is in keeping with the disaster response advocacy of BDO Foundation.

As a follow-up to its relief efforts, the foundation also pursues long-term rehabilitation and reconstruction programs in provinces hit by calamities.

Typhoon Nina, known internationally as Nock-ten, hit provinces on Christmas Day, causing heavy rainfall and widespread flooding, cutting off electricity and affecting as many as 380,000 people.

BDO volunteers from branches in Catanduanes, Albay and Camarines Sur trooped to evacuation centers to provide relief goods to families affected by Typhoon Nina.


Chevron to keep Olive-Ridley sea turtle nesting area protected

CPI has cordoned off the area to protect the nesting sites and prevent natural predators from preying and eating the eggs.

SAN PASCUAL, Batangas, January 19, 2017 — Multiple Olive-Ridley sea turtles have begun to nest as a result of Caltex brand marketer Chevron Philippines, Inc. (CPI)’s San Pascual coastal clean-up during the annual Week of Caring (WOC) held every September.

With two sea turtle nest sightings along the San Pascual coastline to date, CPI has been ramping up efforts to ensure that nesting grounds stay protected at all costs. Guards on duty have gently combed the surface sand over the nesting sites while taking extra care not to disturb the eggs, fenced the areas, and kept the sites safe from tidal waves.

CPI likewise continues to closely monitor two possible nesting sites near the causeway. It already enclosed the sites to prevent natural predators including monitor lizards or “bayawak,” stray cats and dogs, and even rodents from preying and eating the eggs. Guards also vigilantly keep close watch on the possible nesting sites to maintain enclosure integrity. CPI expects the turtle eggs to ripen and the hatchlings to mature and rise to the ground surface within two months.

Guards handling the nesting areas have all undergone Marine Sea Turtle 101 training by the Philippine Global Programme of Action with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) Protected Area and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB).

The San Pascual nesting activity is the latest since the nesting activity along the Lagnas River shoreline in 2013. A “talisay” tree marks the area where Olive-Ridley sea turtles have laid their eggs.

“We are extremely elated with the success of our recent coastal clean-up, thanks to the continued support of the local community and CPI employees who have exhibited true volunteerism. We are committed towards preserving the Batangas coastal area as a declared marine sanctuary for Olive-Ridley sea turtles, and we will constantly safeguard these eggs, through our strengthened protection efforts,” Peter Morris, CPI Country Chairman, said.

About 200 CPI employees and over 100 town residents and students from San Pascual, Batangas joined the annual coastal clean-up, which removed a total of 514 garbage bags or 2.5 tons of worth of rubbish from the area. The coastal clean-up is the final activity of this year’s five-day WOC program, which included school facilities improvement, road safety education, and art therapy session. This is the ninth edition of the WOC, which advocates volunteerism among CPI employees and business partners.

Olive-Ridley sea turtle nestings have been spotted along the San Pascual coastline a few weeks after CPI employees held a coastal clean-up activity as part of their annual Week of Caring program.

25 Schools Learn About Financial Literacy through Western Union and KCFI

With a population of around 2,000 students and 57 teachers, Ususan Elementary School in Taguig City became the 25th and final stop for the “Teacher-for-a-Day” Program or TFAD of Western Union and the Knowledge Channel Foundation Inc. (KCFI)

Employees from Western Union took on the role as teachers to around 40 students for TFAD. They taught the students financial literacy using a Knowledge Channel-produced video episode and a module orienting young learners on the basic concepts of needs and wants, appreciating the value of money and the importance of saving properly.

Aside from this, the school received a K Channel On-Demand Package which included a television set, a pair of speakers, a laptop pre-loaded with more than a thousand of K Channel videos and other multimedia learning resources and an ABS-CBN TV Plus unit.

A complementary partnership

It was in October 2015 when KCFI received a grant of 3.12 million pesos from Western Union through combined donations from Direct Agent 5, Inc., eBusiness Services, Inc., Petnet, Inc., Universal Storefront Services Corporation and The Western Union Foundation.

The two-fold objective for the project was to provide 25 target schools access to relevant and effective multimedia learning resources and to impart financial literacy to the students.

On the end of Western Union and its partner businesses, it was about giving back to communities.

Since the launch of TFAD in September 29, 2016, employees from Western Union, E-Biz, PetNet, and USSC volunteered and taught financial literacy to elementary pupils in 25 schools, particularly in Quezon City, Taguig, Laguna, Cavite, Antipolo, Pampanga, Bulacan and Bataan.

Always a fulfillment

The TFAD closing event in Ususan Elementary School was attended by esteemed officials from Western Union and its affiliate businesses: Ms. Angel Choa, Marketing and Business Development Head of eBusiness Services Inc., Mr. Jun Estopace, Operations Head of Universal Storefront Services Corporation, Mr. Christopher Sarabia, Business Development Senior Manager of Direct Agent 5 Inc., Mr. Edward Estacion, Business Development Head of Direct Agent 5 Inc., Mr. Ron Alejandro, Marketing Manager of PETNET Services Inc., and Ms. Nikki Robas, Marketing Manager of PETNET Services Inc.

Those who volunteered in the “Teacher-for-a-Day” Program or TFAD included Western Union Communication Director Ms. Suzanne Lopez and Country Director Mr. Jeff Navarro.

Ms. Rina Lopez-Bautista, Executive Director and President of KCFI warmly welcomed the volunteers and guests alongside School Principal Annette Cristobal and teacher Myra Reyes.

In her speech, she mentioned, “To see corporate leaders and professionals alongside with public school students and teachers in a classroom is always a fulfillment for the Knowledge Channel Foundation.”

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