Monday, October 19, 2020

Bouncing back with Cash Agad


Both entrepreneurs and workers in MSMEs are the hardest-hit by the economic disruption resulting from the pandemic. There are nearly 1 million MSMEs in the country and data from the Department of Trade and Industry indicated that more than 50% of this number or around 525,000 have closed their businesses. This has left millions of Filipinos unemployed.

On the macro level, the Asian Development Bank said the Philippine economy had bottomed out in May or June and that for the rest of the year, economic contraction is projected at 7.3% by end of 2020. Recovery is expected to happen by 2021 when the pandemic is hoped to be contained and the economy is expected to bounce back by 6.5%.

Cash Agad Partner Agent

Even with the prevailing economic slowdown, the country has been observing signs of gradual recovery especially in some of the MSMEs.

 
One of them is Krystal Bantic of Quirino province in the Cagayan Valley region. Krystal runs a grocery store in her town and she became a Cash Agad partner agent last year.

Cash Agad is a service provided by BDO to far-flung and unbanked communities where residents have little to no access to bank services. Many faraway places in the country do not have banks or ATMs where residents may conveniently get cash. This is due to several reasons.

It could be that communities are located in distant islands where motorized boats are the only means of transportation. Some towns and barrios are located in mountainous or hilly areas with rocky and uneven terrain. Others are separated by sheer hundreds of kilometers from urban areas and have no concrete roads nor highways. All of these factors and more prevent banks from building and maintaining physical branch offices in these faraway towns.

The Cash Agad service provides a simple, elegant, and practical solution to all that. By partnering with stores and shops already established in the community, BDO turns them into community-based ATM terminals. The shop owner receives a POS terminal for use in transacting locally-issued ATM cards, whether debit or prepaid and facilitates basic transactions like cash withdrawals and balance inquiries.

Best of all, Cash Agad accepts transactions using ATM cards from different local banks and non-bank financial institutions in the Philippines, not only those from BDO. It's really a service that benefits entire communities.

According to Krystal, she actually had few customers availing of Cash Agad in her grocery store in the year before the pandemic struck. This was because at that time, people were used to traveling all the way to Candon City in Ilocos Sur province, which is more than four hours away from Quirino, in order to go to banks and ATMs, enjoy fast food restaurants, and buy essential goods.

"People would make the trip to Candon even though it's quite far because it was a mix of both business and leisure for them. Also, goods are priced lower in Candon because over here in Quirino our shops are simply getting our goods from there as well," said Krystal.

The trip to Candon is quite far and the transport available are passenger vans. It takes more than four hours across 289 kilometers. The fare costs at least 200 pesos and even more if a person was also loading some baggage in the van for the trip. When going to Candon, residents of Quirino would have to allot an entire day and at least four hundred pesos for a two-way trip. They would spend more if they included food expenses.

From lockdown to opportunity

The pandemic caused subsequent lockdowns and quarantines which prevented people from leaving Quirino as they were used to. This meant that their usual access to cash (banks and ATMs) and goods in Candon was closed off. But fortunately, Krystal and her Cash Agad kiosk at her grocery store was available.

"Grabe po, noong nagka-lockdown dito sa amin. None of us could leave. The local government ordered all transportation to stop. No one was allowed to go out. People had nowhere else to go to get needed cash to spend for food and other basic needs. So more and more people come to my store not only to withdraw cash but also to buy essential goods," said Krystal.

 

Krystal Bantic, owner of Ivee’s Sari Sari Store and a Cash Agad partner agent in Quirino, Cagayan Valley facilitang a withdrawal transaction.


Krystal faced her own challenges as a Cash Agad partner agent. She was also covered by the travel ban so she could not easily replenish the cash reserves meant for Cash Agad withdrawals. She was able to solve this by either renting a private vehicle to go to the BDO branch in Candon to get cash or she would get the help of the local government to provide transportation to Candon. After all, Krystal had become a frontliner and essential worker since she was the only source of cash for the residents in her town.

Soon enough, practically everyone in the communities around Krystal's store became her customers. Teachers, government workers, policemen, and even farmers and construction workers all depend on her store and its Cash Agad service to get their salaries. Her store also became the official channel for the government cash assistance given to 4Ps beneficiaries. This was done with the help of the local government.

It's not just Krystal's store that benefits from Cash Agad. Other business owners in the area, from other sari-sari stores to eateries, to hardware shops, and even stalls for vegetables, fruits, meat, and fish at the wet market--all of them thanked her for being able to provide cash to the community. This is because the amount of local spending had become greater than ever. People were spending their cash on local businesses instead of those in faraway Candon City.

"Krystal's experience really shows how the Cash Agad service expands financial inclusion in far-flung, hard-to-reach areas in the country. The result is a boost to the local economy. Established businesses earn more. More businesses are set up. The engine of local economic activity is revved up and eventually, there's improved quality of life for the residents.

"If the country's economy is ever going to bounce back from the pandemic, it will take all of us--big businesses, MSMEs, and both urban and rural communities and their local governments--to help each other and do our part. There's a certain inspiration, a beautiful sort of hope when you see communities working together to rise up and recover from a crisis. BDO is doing its part in helping communities recover economically through the Cash Agad network," said Mr. Jim Nasol, Head of Agency Banking, BDO Unibank.

For more information about Cash Agad, go to www.bdo.com.ph/cash-agad or send an email to cashagad@bdo.com.ph  for inquiries. ###

Krystal Bantic, owner of Ivee’s Sari Sari Store and a Cash Agad partner agent in Quirino, Cagayan Valley facilitang a withdrawal transaction.


 

 

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Gardenia Celebrates Happy Bread Day with ‘Laging Kasama’ Virtual Concert




Gardenia Philippines is throwing a free online concert billed as “Laging Kasama” on October 24, 8PM via Facebook live. The virtual music gathering is meant to bring fun and entertainment to everyone with some of the best stage acts in the country. No matter what your taste in music is, there’s a number that you can surely enjoy during the event—just like how Gardenia has a wide variety of products that anyone in your family can enjoy.


The Laging Kasama online concert will  feature your favorite artists like Kim Molina and Jerald Napoles who have made their mark on stage and television with their work in Rak of Aegis, Jowable, and Ang Pangarap Kong Holdap; Gloc-9 who is best known for his rap music and collaborations with various OPM artists; Ebe Dancel, former frontman of Sugarfree and a well-known writer of some of the best poignant OPM songs; and Keiko Necesario, an electronic-folk singer and songwriter who also creates her versions of her favorite songs.


Sharing delight is exactly what Gardenia has been doing and delivering to our homes. For more than two decades now, Gardenia products have been a staple in Filipino households. Whether it’s the breakfast table, school lunchbox, work baon, midnight snack as well as in parties and celebrations, Gardenia is always present (Laging Kasama) as the family’s choice of bread and bakery products. The company is also known for being visible and ready to participate in various philanthropic activities and corporate social responsibility programs especially in challenging times, staying true to its Laging Kasama campaign. This year, Gardenia wants to elevate its message on Happy Bread Day by sharing the spirit of togetherness even during the toughest of times through a powerful medium: music.


Besides the great music, the event—which is open for everyone to join and enjoy—Gardenia will also be raffling off special packs to its viewers. Register now by visiting http://bit.ly/GardeniaHBD2020 and get a chance to win exciting prizes!


Visit Gardenia’s official FB page at https://www.facebook.com/gardeniaph for more details about the event.


Cash Agad: Ka-partner sa muling pagbangon


Naging matindi ang epekto ng pandemic sa mga pamilya at komunidad sa bansa hindi lang  dahil sa takot na naramdaman ng marami mula sa banta ng COVID-19 kundi pati na rin sa epekto nito sa kabuhayan. Maraming nagsarang negosyo at maraming nawalan ng trabaho. At yun namang mga kumikita pa rin, hindi makapag-withdraw ng cash dahil pinatigil ng mga lockdown ang pampublikong transportasyon.

Mabuti na lamang at andiyan ang mga Cash Agad partner agents, naka-antabay para matugunan ang banking needs ng bawat Pilipino sa gitna ng pandemya. Naapektuhan man sila noong nagdeklara ng community quarantine, sila naman ay nakatulong sa barangay, nakakabawi at patuloy pang bumabangon upang muling umunlad ang kanilang mga negosyo.

 


Ang network ng Cash Agad partner agents ay binubuo ng mga maliliit na negosyante sa Luzon, Visayas, at Mindanao na nagpapatakbo ng sebisyong Cash Agad sa kani-kanilang komunidad. Layunin ng sebisyong ito na bigyan ng access sa cash ang mga malalayong komunidad, lalo na ang mga liblib na lugar, mga lugar na kailangan pang umakyat ng bundok o tumawid ng dagat. 

Ang Cash Agad ay solusyon mula sa BDO Unibank na kung saan ang pinakamahahalagang serbisyo ng bangko - tulad ng withdrawal at balance inquiry - ay nakakarating sa isang liblib na lugar nang hindi na kinakailangang magpatayo pa ng isang branch o maglagay ng ATM.


Tindahan na, ATM pa

Ang may-ari ng isang tindahan (pwede ring salon, drugstore, hardware store, etc.) ay maaaring maging Cash Agad partner agent na seserbiyso sa isang komunidad. Dahil ang negosyanteng ito ay matagal nang bahagi ng komunidad, malapit ang pwesto, kilala at pinagkakatiwalaan, mas madali sa mga tao na sa kanya lumapit para kunin ang kanilang pera.

Kapag naging Cash Agad partner agent, ang may-ari ng tindahan ay bibigyan ng POS terminal na may kakayanang tumanggap ng mga transaksyon gamit ang Philippine-issued ATM card, mapa-debit o prepaid man ito. At kahit pa BDO Unibank ang nagpapatakbo sa Cash Agad, tinatanggap ng POS terminal ang mga ATM cards ng lahat ng bangko sa Pilipinas.


Cash Agad at mga LGUs

Isa pang maganda sa Cash Agad ay hindi ito nakadepende sa oras ng bangko. Habang bukas ang tindahan ng Cash Agad partner agent, pwede mag-transact dito. Yun nga lang, binago lang ang mga schedule ngayon dahil sa pandemic at community quarantine. Ang mga lokal na opisyal ang nagbibigay ng schedule kung kelan pwede mag- withdraw sa isang tindahang may Cash Agad. Ito ay para masigurado ang physical distancing at kaligtasan ng bawat partner agent at mga customers nito.

Maging ang mga LGU ay umaasa rin sa Cash Agad para maparating sa mga nangangailangan ang mga supporta ng gobyerno. Halimbawa, ang mga benepisyaryo ng 4Ps ay sa Cash Agad na nagwi-withdraw ng kanilang monthly cash assistance. Ang mga IPs o indigenous people din ay tumatanggap ng kanilang cash assistance at iniwi-withdraw dito. Lahat ng ito ay naging posible dahil sa pagtutulungan ng Cash Agad at LGU.

Maski ang mga empleyado ng munisipyo, mga pulis, at mga teacher sa isang lokalidad ay sa Cash Agad na nagpupunta para makuha ang sweldo nila. Ang mga pribadong empleyado, mga pamilya ng OFWs, lahat sila ay pwedeng sa Cash Agad na mag-withdraw.

Ito ay malaking ginhawa para sa kanilang lahat dahil noong nagkaroon ng mga lockdown at checkpoints, hindi na makaalis ang maraming tao sa kani-kanilang baranggay para magpunta sa mga dati nilang dinadayong mga bangko at ATM na malayo.

Tulong sa negosyo

Lorna Taruc, owner of Jan Pau convenience store and a Cash Agad partner agent in San Simon, Pampanga facilitang a withdrawal transaction

Ayon kay Lorna Taruc, may-ari ng Jan Pau convenience store at Cash Agad partner agent sa San Simon, Pampanga, malaking tulong sa negosyo niya at sa komunidad niya ang Cash Agad.

"Malaking convenience para sa mga tao yung dito na lang sila sa tindahan magwi-withdraw ng cash. Hindi na nila kailangan magbiyahe ng malayo. Lalo na noong lockdown ang hirap kumuha ng sasakyan. Bukod dito, dumami rin ang customer sa tindahan ko.

Roselyn Abela, owner of FBA Merchandise and a Cash Agad partner agent in Pitogo, Bohol facilitating a withdrawal transacon for a local security guard.

Ayon naman sa isa pang Cash Agad partner agent, si Roselyn Abela ng Pitogo, Bohol, maraming natakot lumabas ng lugar nila noong nagkaroon ng community quarantine dahil nabalitaan nilang may mga Covid positive doon sa bayan kung saan sila pumupunta para mag-bangko at mag-ATM.

Ang bayan na ito ay napakalayo sa Pitogo. Sasakay pa ng habal-habal tapos tatawid ng dagat gamit ang lantsa sa kabilang isla. Tapos habal-habal na naman. Aabutin ng kalahati hanggang isang araw para lang makapag-bangko o ATM. At mga limandaang piso ang gastos sa pamasahe kung balikan.

"Kaya noong nagkaroon ng quarantine, nagpasalamat ang mga tao sa lugar namin dahil may Cash Agad ako sa tindahan ko. Dito na sila nagwiwithdraw. Tapos, dito na rin sila bumibili ng mga kailangan nila pagkatapos mag-withdraw kaya nadadagdagan ang kita ko," sabi ni Roselyn. 


Financial inclusion

Ayon kay Jim Nasol, Head of Agency Banking (Cash Agad) ng BDO, ang pagkakaroon ng mga Cash Agad partner agents sa mga liblib na lugar ay matagal nang plano ng bangko. Ito ay dahil sa pagnanais nito na mapalaganap ang pag-unlad sa mga kanayunan sa buong Pilipinas.

"Maraming mga Pilipino ang masipag, matalino, mapagsumikap, at nangagarap na mapabuti ang kanilang kabuhayan. Kaya lang, napipigilan sila ng kawalan ng access sa cash at kapital. Marami ang mga Pilipinong nahihirapan pagkasyahin ang pera dahil dun pa lang sa pagkuha ng cash, mahabang oras at malaking gastos ang kailangan.

"Ang mga Cash Agad partner agents natin ang nagiging daan para mapalaganap ang financial inclusion, o yung mapalawak ang sakop ng mga serbisyong pinansyal. Nakikita natin sa mga lugar tulad ng Pitogo na malaki ang nagagawa ng financial inclusion para mabigyan ng magandang buhay ang mga Pilipino sa malalayong komunidad," paliwanag niya. 

Dagdag pa ni Arnold Katipunan, Head of Sales ng Cash Agad mula sa BDO, lalong mahalaga ang financial inclusion at access sa cash ngayong panahon ng pandemic, kung kailan maraming mga tao at negosyo ang kailangang bumangon mula sa epekto ng krisis sa kalusugan at ekonomiya.

Patuloy pa rin ang pagdami ng mga Cash Agad partner agents sa bansa. Para sa karagdagang impormasyon tungkol sa Cash Agad, puntahan ang BDO website http://www.bdo.com.ph/cash-agad  o kaya ay magpadala ng email sa cashagad@bdo.com.ph.    




 

 

Friday, October 16, 2020

Xiaomi brings Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T to The Philippines


●       Starting from PHP 19,990, Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T offer impressive cameras, AdaptiveSync display, powerful processor and long-lasting battery 

●       Mi Fans and consumers who purchase Mi 10T Pro or Mi 10T will be entitled for premium services** including a 24-month warranty and Screen Protection Guarantee

●       Mi Watch will also arrive in The Philippines on a later date

 

Xiaomi launched the Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T in The Philippines. The flagship Mi 10T Pro takes creating and exploring to the next level, with unmatched specs in its class. Mi 10T continues to push boundaries, delivering top-notch experiences for everyone from working professionals, to streaming enthusiasts and mobile gamers.

Priced at PHP 19,990 for Mi 10T and PHP 24,990 for Mi 10T Pro, the flagship models are amongst the best-in-class high-performance smartphones.

Along with the local announcement of the two smartphones, Xiaomi’s very first smart watch, Mi Watch, and Mi 65W Fast Charger with GaN tech were also introduced into the Filippino market, further expanding the brand’s range of technologically advanced IoT-connected smart hardware products.

Mark Li, General Manager of The Philippines, Xiaomi, announced Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T, and said, “Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T were born to be wonderful in all aspects; they are next-level 5G flagship devices designed to shake up the status quo in the global flagship smartphone market with their premium specs and accessible pricing points. Their uncompromised performance, elegant design and innovative capability once again demonstrate Xiaomi’s commitment to offering Filippino customers and Mi Fans superior user experiences and empower their creativity.”


Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T: Taking mobile creativity and exploration to the next level

Continuing Xiaomi’s category-defining ultra-high resolution legacy

Xiaomi played a pivotal role in defining the 108MP camera segment – from debuting the world’s first 108MP smartphone camera to introducing countless photography software innovations in the past year alone. Mi 10T Pro continues the brand’s ultra-high resolution legacy with OIS and 8K video support. Mi 10T offers an impressive 64MP main camera. Both Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T offer a triple camera setup with a 13MP ultra wide-angle camera, 5MP macro camera and a 20MP front camera.

Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T also flaunt new and dynamic photography software features. Six standalone Long exposure modes let anyone capture artsy shots, from Moving crowd – which focuses on an idle subject while blurring dynamic surroundings – to Star trails – which creates a swirling starry sky effect. Photo Clones captures four of you in a single shot. Plus, Timed burst feature offers endless opportunities for fun, allowing users to set up photos with a time gap that can also be converted into video, while three new photo filters – Cyberpunk, Gold vibes and Black ice – help bring the desired mood to life.

Pushing the boundaries even further, Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T also offer compelling new video features. Video Clones capture “two selves” in one video, while Dual Video can record from the device’s front and back cameras simultaneously. Finally, Time-lapse selfie video lets users create a fast-forward effect for more engaging vlogs.

 

A smooth future with 144Hz AdaptiveSync TrueColor display

Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T feature one of the best flat displays available in any smartphone today, with an industry-leading 144Hz refresh rate to boot. Xiaomi’s AdaptiveSync display automatically matches the content’s frame rate, from enjoying your favorite movie at 48Hz to watching TV series at 50Hz, from streaming video at 30Hz or 60Hz to scrolling social media feeds or gaming at up to 144Hz – it guarantees a smooth experience and optimum battery usage. And with Motion Estimation, Motion Compensation (MEMC) technology, the devices insert more frames to make video smoother and better viewing.

With a P3 color gamut and TrueColor, the display offers extremely wide range and accurate colors. Reading mode 3.0 simulates a paper texture to protect your eyes, while Sunlight display 3.0 automatically enhances contrast and adjusts dynamic color saturation outdoors. With a 360° ambient light sensor built in, the screen can intelligently adjust brightness – even in backlit conditions.

 

Power your creative genius and get your game on with Qualcomm® Snapdragon 865™

Anchored by the flagship Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 865, Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T offer extreme power efficiency, performance, and 5G connectivity. Xiaomi packed in a wide range of 5G bands, ensuring compatibility with more networks in more locations than before.

Users will also experience desktop level gaming thanks to the Qualcomm® Adreno™ 650 GPU. Together with UFS3.1 and LPDDR5, the devices tout the industry-leading smartphone ROM and RAM available today.

Massive 5,000mAh (typ) battery with added features to keep you powered up all day

Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T boast one of Xiaomi’s biggest flagship series batteries: a massive 5,000mAh (typ). With battery power optimization technology baked in, the smartphones release more power for longer battery life. When a juice up is needed, no one will miss a beat thanks to MMT (Middle middle tab) technology and an exceptionally fast and uniquely designed 33W wired charging process – made even more convenient by the included 33W charger.

 

Sales Info of Mi 10T and Mi 10T Pro

Mi 10T will be initially available in two colors, Lunar Silver and Cosmic Black, whereas Mi 10T Pro will be available in three colors, Aurora Blue, Lunar Silver and Cosmic Black.

Starting from October 16, Mi 10T will be retailed at PHP 19,990 for 6GB + 128GB variant and at PHP 20,990 for 8GB + 128GB variant, whereas Mi 10T Pro at PHP 24,990 for 8GB + 256GB variant.

As part of the first sale on Lazada on October 16, a flash sale campaign will be held starting from 00:00. 6GB + 128GB variant of Mi 10T will be available at PHP 17,990, a drop from PHP 19,990; and 8GB + 256GB variant of Mi 10T Pro will be available at PHP 24,990 and each buyer of this product will receive a FREE set of Premium Speaker Gift* which is worth PHP 1,399. Additional vouchers of PHP 1,000 in limited quantity will also be given to consumers of Mi 10T and Mi 10T Pro.

At the official online store on Shopee, Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T will be available for purchase starting from October 23.

Pre-order: these new smartphones will be available for pre-order at official offline channels from October 16 to 22:


*Gifts come in limited units and are on a first-come-first-served basis only. Standard terms and conditions apply.

In addition, each buyer of Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T will be given:

●      a six-month Netflix mobile subscription as a complimentary gift, with which users will be able to binge watch their favorite shows on their new smartphones, and

●      **Premium Services which include a 24-month local warranty plus a single accidental damage coverage on the screen within 6 months of purchase from October 16, 2020 to December 31, 2021. Standard terms and conditions apply.

Mi Watch: Empower an active life with styles and features to love


Making its debut, Mi Watch is Xiaomi’s very first smartwatch model for the global market. As a brand new addition to Xiaomi’s wearable product lineup, Mi Watch is made to empower active lifestyles of all kinds.

Featuring a 1.39’’ bright AMOLED panel and a dedicated sports button on the side, Mi Watch provides users instant access to a smorgasbord of 117 exercise modes. To comprehensively oversight one's health, it packs six different sensors and GPS to offer key health metrics and environmental data, for example, heart rate, blood oxygen level, and air pressure. The device is ultra light-weight and long lasting – perfect for continuous everyday use. After only two hours of charging, it offers an outstanding 16 days of battery life. Additionally, Mi Watch supports an array of features including over 100 watch faces, camera remote function, native emojis on notifications, voice control, and more.

Mi Watch will arrive in The Philippines at a later stage, when its price and sales channels will be announced.

Mi 65W Fast Charger with GaN tech

To keep up with your power needs, Xiaomi also launched Mi 65W Fast Charger with GaN tech. Packing a powerful punch into a compact design that is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, Mi 65W Fast Charger is able to swiftly charge your smartphone, laptop, and game console. Starting at a recommended retail price of PHP 1,399, Mi 65W Fast Charger will be available for purchase on October 23.

For product images please refer to Mi 10T Pro, Mi 10T, Mi Watch, Mi 65W Fast Charger with GaN Tech

For product one-pagers please refer to the link here.

For more information on the launch of Mi 10T Pro and Mi 10T or on Xiaomi Philippines, please visit Xiaomi official website and information portal at https://www.mi.com/ph/, or drop by their official social media pages at https://www.facebook.com/XiaomiPhilippines (Facebook) and https://www.instagram.com/mi_philippines/ (Instagram) for other exciting updates.

 

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About Xiaomi Corporation

Xiaomi Corporation was founded in April 2010 and listed on the Main Board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on July 9, 2018 (1810.HK). Xiaomi is an internet company with smartphones and smart hardware connected by an Internet of Things (IoT) platform at its core.

With an equal emphasis on innovation and quality, Xiaomi continuously pursues high-quality user experience and operational efficiency. The company relentlessly builds amazing products with honest prices to let everyone in the world enjoy a better life through innovative technology.

Xiaomi is currently the world’s fourth-largest smartphone brand, and has established the world’s leading consumer IoT platform, with 271 million smart devices connected to its platform, excluding smartphones and laptops. Xiaomi products are present in more than 90 markets around the world.

In August 2020, the company made the Fortune Global 500 list for the second time, ranking 422nd, up 46 places compared to last year. It also ranked 7th among internet companies on the list. In May 2020, the company made the Forbes Global 2000 List again, and its ranking jumped to 384th.

Xiaomi is a constituent of the Hang Seng Index, Hang Seng China Enterprises Index and Hang Seng TECH Index.

For more information about the company, please visit https://blog.mi.com/en/.

 

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Mondelez Philippines Gives Weekly Vegetable Packs to 300 Students

 

Home schooling = Home cooking

A lot has changed with the way schools are operating these days. Instead of face-to-face classes, students and parents are adapting to learning at home via online and module-based means. And instead of school-based feeding programs, the Joy Schools program of Mondelez Philippines is adapting as well. From daily lunch meals cooked inside school kitchens, the program now provides weekly vegetable and rice packs to 300 students in its adopted schools.

The Joy Schools Program is an adopt-a-school initiative aimed at empowering children to take positive steps towards overall well-being. The program was established in 2011 in the Philippines, and has since expanded to Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. Locally, the program has directly benefited 4,500 students through its daily lunch feeding program, which runs for 9 months every school year. 

Due to the lack of physical interaction caused by COVID-19, Mondelez Philippines has had to adapt its program to be able to provide for the nutritional needs of its adopted students. Starting this October, 300 students, enrolled at 4th Estate Elementary School, Don Galo Elementary School, and Balara Elementary School and their families, will receive weekly food packs of rice and vegetables. The food packs will differ every week, to ensure students receive all the nutrients they need to continue learning and growing. Here’s a sample of what they will get every week, from this month until April 2021

Week 1 Menu: Ginisang Monggo, Saute Petsay, Adobong Kangkong, Ginisang Dilis, Malunggay Soup (1 kg of Rice, 1 pack of Monggo, 1 tali Malunggay, 1 tali Petsay, 1 pack of Dilis, 1 pack Toyo, 1 tali Kangkong, and 5 pcs of Bananas)


Every week these packs will be directly delivered to the schools for the students’ families to pick up, and families will be requested to bring their own containers. More importantly, schools will be asked to adopt a claiming system following social distancing protocols. In addition to this, the content of the food packs will be supplied by local farmers. Aside from providing nutritious food to students and their families, Mondelez Philippines, together with its partner the Philippine Business for Social Progress, thought to use this opportunity to provide livelihood to farmers who have also been struggling during these times.

 “Schooling has not stopped; but has rather evolved. The nutritional needs of students have similarly not gone away; but must be supported especially during this pandemic,” shares Toff Rada, Mondelez Philippines’ CGA Country Manager. “As a snacks company, it is important for us to promote mindful snacking, by partnering with communities to provide for the nutritional needs of children. Through the 9 years of implementing our feeding program, we have seen that it not only improves nutrition and wellbeing. It also strengthens students to continue their learning and education. They can participate and benefit from their classes more if they are well nourished. With these weekly vegetable and rice packs, we hope our students will be empowered and energized to continue learning and growing, even at home.

Mondelez Philippines’ Joy Schools Program has continuously evolved and innovated. Apart from the food packs, they have also provided home learnings kits and laptops to their adopted schools. These students still have a long way to go, and it’s comforting to know that the Company will continue to shower them with support. Despite the uncertainties during this time, one thing remains sure. Mondelez Philippines will stay committed to sparking meaningful change in these students’ lives.

 

 

About Mondelēz International

Mondelēz International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDLZ) empowers people to snack right in over 150 countries around the world. With 2019 net revenues of approximately $26 billion, MDLZ is leading the future of snacking with iconic global and local brands such as OREO, belVita and LU biscuits; Cadbury Dairy Milk, Milka and Toblerone chocolate; Sour Patch Kids candy and Trident gum. Mondelēz International is a proud member of the Standard and Poor’s 500, Nasdaq 100 and Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Visit www.mondelezinternational.com or follow the company on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MDLZ.

 

About Mondelez Philippines

Mondelez Philippines Inc. has been providing consumers with delicious snack products for the past 57 years - since 1963. Its product portfolio includes Tang powdered beverages, Eden cheese, mayonnaise and sandwich spread, Cheez Whiz spread, Oreo cookies, Tiger energy biscuits, belVita breakfast biscuits, as well as Toblerone and Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolates. The company employs about 450 people in the Philippines, with a manufacturing facility in Parañaque City. Visit https://ph.mondelezinternational.com/home.

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Lamoiyan Corporation donates 3M worth of hygiene products for DepEd’s Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan

 


DepED Region IV-A led by Regional Director Wildfredo Cabral received Lamoiyan hygiene products to be distributed in several schools.

Lamoiyan Corporation, a leading manufacturer of personal hygiene and home care products in the country, has donated over three million worth of Lamoiyan products to Department of Education (DepEd) as it celebrates Head Lice Awareness Month and 5th year of Kilusang Kontra Kuto (Movement Against Head Lice) initiative.

In support of DepEd’s Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan amidst the pandemic, Lamoiyan Corporation distributed packs of Licealiz Head Lice Treatment Shampoo, Hapee Toothpaste, and Dazz Dishwashing Liquid to selected regions for distribution among the students.

Selected regions in Luzon are Central Luzon, CALABARZON, and National Capital Region. Whereas, Central Visayas, Northern Mindanao, and Davao are the beneficiary regions for Visayas and Mindanao.

Lamoiyan Corporation’s Licealiz Head Lice Treatment Shampoo initiated Kilusang Kontra Kuto in 2016, a coalition that has been battling head lice infestation nationwide for a kuto-free Philippines. The campaign includes yearly nationwide shampoo activity in schools in its commitment to fight head lice infestation or pediculosis and eliminate the social stigma associated with it.

DepEd NCR School Health and Nutrition Unit Head Dr. Genapayao as they received the donations from Lamoiyan Corporation.


In light of the 5th year of this initiative, Lamoiyan Corporation’s Licealiz aimed to support DepEd’s Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan in the time of COVID-19 (BE-LCP). This is the department’s response to the challenges posed by COVID-19 which covers the most essential learning competencies, multiple learning delivery modalities for teachers, school leaders and learners, required health standards in schools and workplaces, and special activities like Brigada Eskwela, Oplan Balik Eskwela, and partnerships.

“We are grateful for the Department of Education for being very supportive of our Kilusang Kontra Kuto campaign. With our long-running partnership with DepEd, we were able to visit several schools, do shampooing activities among students, and share the correct way of combatting head lice since 2016,” said Lamoiyan Corporation Vice President for Marketing Bing Cavestany.

“Although students now are practicing distance learning and we temporarily cannot do our annual activities due to the COVID-19 crisis, Licealiz would like to consistently promote health and personal hygiene through our humble donation as children or even family members are still susceptible to head lice infestation no matter the circumstances, especially with many staying at home and in close quarters during the pandemic,” she added.


DepEd Region III Regional Director Nicolas Capulong and Regional Director Assistant Rhoda Razon as they received  Lamoiyan hygiene products for the students of Central Luzon


Aside from encouraging good oral hygiene, Lamoiyan is also advocating the correct way of treating head lice infestation, which is considered the second most common health problem of public school children after tooth decay.

Lamoiyan Corporation’s Licealiz Head Lice Treatment Shampoo effectively kills lice and nits after two weeks of use and prevents lice infestation from recurring. Its active ingredient, pyrethrin, a natural extract from chrysanthemum flowers, is clinically tested and proven safe and successful in killing lice and nits, while its conditioning formula keeps your kid’s hair soft, smooth and fragrant.

For more information on head lice prevention and other Lamoiyan products, log on to www.facebook.com/licealiz or visit www.lamoiyan.com.

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

EGGciting recipes below P100 for a week

 


 


Eggs are one of the food stamples that are incredibly inexpensive and yet are flexible enough to go with lots of different meals and foods.

There are a number of reasons why people love eggs – it’s easy to cook, versatile, and one of the cheapest and convenient protein sources. Filipinos have especially stocked up on this pantry staple amid the height of lockdowns due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Based on the consumption survey conducted in 2015 by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST), chicken eggs ranked seventh on the “Top 30 Commonly Consumed Food Items” in the Philippines, proving that it is an indispensable ingredient in a household. While eggs are often seen as an accompaniment to our breakfast silog meals, it has many other uses from making quick meals, a thickener and binding agent, to adding flavor.

Eggs are packed with nutrients that children need for healthy growth and development. It contains vitamins and minerals and all nine essential amino acids that the human body cannot produce on its own, making it an ingredient that can be easily added to other food to enhance its nutritional value. It’s no wonder that it is a favorite of Filipinos as it’s not only nutritious but an inexpensive source of nutrients and easy to prepare especially for busy parents.


But just because eggs are an obvious choice in making healthy and delicious egg-cellent meals, it doesn’t mean that you should be limited with the usual boiled, fried, or poached. Skip the same-old ways of cooking eggs and try introducing more variety into your child’s diet. Ajinomoto Philippines Corporation has prepared a “7-Day Egg Challenge” for you that will help you learn new ways to cook eggs for your kids. You’d be surprised that even picky eaters would love the way we added other ingredients like veggies to enrich the color, texture, and nutrients of the dishes. Best of all, all are under a hundred pesos for a family-size meal!

For full recipes and for more information about Ajinomoto and its products, visit www.ajinomoto.com.ph and facebook.com/CookmunitybyAjinomotoPH

Don’t forget to snap a photo of your eggciting dish and share it with us using the hashtag #AjinomotoEggcitingRecipe.


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The Ajinomoto Group is a global company with specialties in the business of food and amino acids, guided by our leading-edge bioscience and fine chemical technologies.

Based on the corporate message “Eat Well, Live Well.”, we have been scientifically pursuing the possibilities of amino acids in supporting the healthy lives of people all around the world. We aim for future growth and continuous contribution to greater wellness by creating value through sustainable and innovative solutions for communities and society.

The Ajinomoto Group has offices in 35 countries and regions and sells products in more than 130 countries and regions. In fiscal 2018, sales were 1.1274 trillion yen (10.1 billion U.S. dollars). To learn more, visit www.ajinomoto.com.


Tuesday, September 29, 2020

3M virtual innovation tour: Science in our Everyday Lives

 

3M virtual innovation tour: Science in our Everyday Lives


Science is deeply interwoven with our everyday lives. It affects our everyday lives in many ways.

Post-it Notes. Scotch. Scotch-Brite. These are just some of the most iconic brands that nearly everyone across the globe grew up with. Their common denominator? Their mother company is 3M, which applies science in collaborative ways to improve lives daily, making it the purveyor of the world’s most innovative products and one of the strongest science advocates in the market.

We encounter 3M products every day, everywhere. In fact, the most recognizable products like the colorful Post-it® Notes we’ve come to rely on as great reminders, the supreme adhesive quality of Scotch® Magic Tape we often use for wrapping gifts, and the iconic yellow and green dishwashing sponges by Scotch-Brite Brand that is a staple at the kitchen sink. These are all so embedded in our daily lives as Filipinos.

How embedded you ask? 3M is literally everywhere. Our mobile phones and laptops likely have multiple 3M applications inside it. The tint in your vehicles—yes, likely 3M. And while most of us have not gone out in the past months, even the road signs are made possible with science and technology from 3M (called retro-reflective, by the way). The vast breadth of 3M’s products and technologies continue to grow and even as we transition to a changed reality due to the pandemic, the innovation company shows no sign of stopping.


In a recent virtual innovation tour, 3M showed us the seemingly magical ways the technologies in their products work. Seemingly magical because, of course, it is science. Who knew there is a science to properly washing dishes? The abrasive minerals embedded in their scouring pads allow for superior cleaning of our precious pots and pans. Or how Command™ Hooks have the best adhesives that won’t damage walls, but still holds on strongly? Seeing and understanding what makes the classic disposable N95 particulate respirator of 3M special was also eye-opening. It is their unique filter media technology that goes into their respirators that allows for the greater passage of air while keeping us safe from the nasty contaminants. This also offered better appreciation on why face masks are for the general public and why the N95 respirators are better left for the healthcare workers.

It was also refreshing to know that a big company like 3M still manages to be active in supporting the country through various charitable activities and also sharing their knowledge in science like their Science at Home program, ultimately staying true to their vision of improving lives.

We were also given a taste of one Science at Home experiment by the 3M engineers, on chromatography which is definitely doable with kids at home with available materials. 3M is actively advocating for continuing education with Science at Home, a series of science education modules that parents and kids can do together, to supplement science lessons in school.

Financial grants have also been provided for Project Damayan of Caritas Manila and Philippine Business for Social Progress. On the other hand, personal protection equipment (PPE) donations have been made to Philippine National Red Cross and several private and public hospitals in the country aimed to support those affected by the pandemic. Earlier in the year during the height of the Taal Volcano eruption, 3M Philippines also provided PPE donations to World Vision Philippines, the Philippine National Red Cross, and other first responders.

To know more about 3M Philippines, its products, and advocacies head over to https://www.3mphilippines.com.ph/ for more information.

Friday, September 25, 2020

5 essential kitchen tips for homeschooling moms



“Going back to school” is not the same this year as many schools shift to distance learning due to the pandemic. In addition to other responsibilities, most parents now need to take on their kids’ schooling and ensure that they really understand their online lessons.

If you’re already working from home, you may be thinking that you just don’t have enough time for your job, household chores, and helping your kids with school. Before you get overwhelmed, Solane, the leading supplier of LPG in the country, is here to offer some kitchen tips to make your new arrangement at home easier.

Set a schedule. Preparing a meal, on top of everything else that needs to get done, can be time consuming. Make sure you have a daily schedule that includes the time you will allot for cooking, uninterrupted work, your kids' school hours, as well as your break time and meal times. Once you have your schedule, do your best to stick to it so you can manage your time better.

Plan meals in advance. Save yourself from unnecessary stress by planning the meals you will cook for the family ahead of time. By doing this, you get to save some time by getting all the ingredients you need at the grocery in one trip during quarantine. Just make sure to plan a variety of dishes that are easy to prepare, flavorful, and nutritious.

Get the kids involved. If your kids aren’t too busy, you can ask them to help with some simple tasks in the kitchen like rinsing the vegetables or mixing ingredients. This can also be an opportunity to teach them about kitchen safety when it comes to things like peeling and chopping vegetables to avoid accidents. A few minutes before your meal, ask your kids to help by setting up the table. After eating, they can also help clear the table and put the dirty dishes in the sink. Not only will this help you, but this will also teach your kids responsibility and discipline.

Do the chores immediately. Try to get the chores done right away. Small stressors, like unfinished kitchen chores, only add up and affect your overall well-being. If tasks are left undone, you may feel more stressed, especially while working or tutoring your kids.  Start small. After eating, you can wash your kitchen tools and tableware, wipe the counters, and throw out the trash immediately. If you don’t feel up to it, don’t think of it as, “I need to clean the kitchen.” Instead, look at it this way: Do you want a clean kitchen? Then, get cleaning.

Invest in the right kitchen equipment. Invest in kitchen tools that can help you save time and cook faster, such as convection ovens, food processors, and instant pots. Also consider kitchen appliances that don’t need too much attention while cooking, like slow cookers. Just put your ingredients in them and they will take care of the cooking process. This will give you more time to focus on your work and kids’ lessons. In addition, opt for an LPG brand that is made for fast and safe cooking, like Solane. With the help of Solane, you can easily prepare your meals without the hassle or any worries.

For more information, visit www.solane.com.ph or follow @solane.ph on Facebook.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

BDO Foundation reassures commitment to rebuild lives through Peso-for-Peso Donation Drive

Filipinos are known for their natural resilience, manifested in those who, after a cataclysmic event, are able to rise from the debris and ashes of their destroyed lives, at times even with a sense of humor. They are battle-tested for any type of crisis and the fight against COVID-19 is no different. Even if this unprecedented pandemic is still far from over sans the availability of a vaccine, hopes are still high with the presence of means to survive the fight.

Giving its full support

BDO Foundation launched the Peso-for-Peso Donation Drive, a fundraising activity that ran from May until July 16, 2020. Proceeds were used to provide test kits and supplies to COVID-19 testing centers in underserved communities nationwide.

Under the drive, minimum donations of P500 and maximum donations of up to P1 million per donor were matched peso for peso by BDO Foundation. Donations from BDO and non-BDO customers, as well as BDO employees, poured in via the Bank’s e-banking channels—BDO Online and Mobile Banking, as well as through BDO Credit Card, ATMs, and branches.

BDO Foundation funded the donation of close to 10,000 PCR test kits for use of 10 hospitals across the country. These recipient-hospitals agreed to use the test kits for frontliners and people who cannot afford the high costs of testing.

Mario Deriquito, president of BDO Foundation, said the initiative forms part of the Foundation’s advocacy to rebuild lives and provide support to hospitals, especially rural health units all over the Philippines.

The Peso-for-Peso Drive also funded the donation of food packs to 8,000 underprivileged families in Bacoor, Cavite; Santa Rosa, Laguna; San Jose del Monte, Bulacan; and Caloocan City.

On top of these efforts, the BDO Foundation also supported the Philippine government’s RapidPass and ReliefAgad programs, highlighting the importance of collaboration between the private sector and the national government.

The Bank, through the Foundation, donated 300 smartphones with prepaid loads and 550 power banks to the Department of Science and Technology in support of the RapidPass System. RapidPass used QR codes, which facilitated the quick passage of the vehicles of over 500,000 authorized frontliners. The smartphones donated by the Foundation served as QR scanners at 180 checkpoints, where there were special lanes for frontliners.

Additionally, BDO Foundation also provided support to facilitate one-time passwords to users of ReliefAgad, a web application that allowed those entitled to a cash aid to register online and to receive their financial assistance safely and swiftly through electronic payment systems or directly from banks.

Response through partnership

Isolate, test and trace comprise the backbone of an effective COVID-19 response, according to the World Health Organization. Many countries who have successfully contained the spread of the virus implemented such protocol. Now, the Philippines is no longer too far behind with the pilot implementation of Project ARK’s pooled RT-PCR testing in two key cities in the country, namely, Makati and Cebu.

Pooled testing combines swab samples from individuals and examines them together using a single reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test kit. Pools of five, 10, or 20 persons are tested depending on the prevalence of COVID-19 in an area. Considered a game-changer in the fight to contain the coronavirus, the method is seen to boost testing capacity, expedite tests and significantly reduce the cost of RT-PCR kits. Based on extensive research conducted by the Philippine Society of Pathologists, pooled testing is very effective.

BDO Foundation is funding the pilot implementation, covering the costs of automated extractor machines for each city, training of health workers on proper swabbing, PCR test kits, and other peripherals.

Apart from Go Negosyo, who spearheads Project ARK, BDO Foundation is in collaboration with the local governments of Makati and Cebu, the Philippine Children’s Medical Center, who will be its partner-testing center for the pilot implementation in Makati, and the University of Cebu Medical Center and Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center for the pilot implementation in Cebu.

Pilot implementation of RT-PCR pooled testing in Makati covered 6,000 individuals, mostly market vendors, and public utility drivers. In Cebu, pilot implementation will cover 4,000 individuals, also market vendors, and public utility drivers.

A worthy cause

BDO Unibank president and CEO Nestor V. Tan, who also sits as a trustee of BDO Foundation, said the support for the pooled testing project comes with the belief that it will address the key areas of cost, accessibility, and timeliness. The implementation of the project is seen to not only benefit Cebu and Makati but will hopefully impact the whole country as well.

“We always believed that the fight against COVID is not the public sector’s alone or the private sector’s. It is a joint initiative by all of us working in the same direction. We are a big supporter of Go Negosyo’s Project ARK because clearly it is not about the trade-off between life and livelihood but it’s trying to address both because one cannot exist without the other,” he said.

































Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Sam Ajdani and Samantha Ashley Lo ,grand winners and #StayStrong Champions Century Tuna Everybod Superbod 2020

 

It was indeed a strong and succesful finish for fitness coach and Nursing student, Sam Ajdani and Samantha Ashley Lo hailed as Century Tuna Everybod Superbod 2020.


Held at the Blue Leaf Cosmopolitan in Quezon City, the finals event followed strict adherence to the FDCP-DOH-DOLE safety protocols for film and audio-visual shoots.

In a landmark event hailed as a strong and successful finish amid the pandemic, Century Tuna Superbods 2020 hailed nursing student and ESL instructor Samantha Ashley Lo and fitness coach and professional model Sam Ajdani as the Century Tuna Everybod Superbod title holders. The most anticipated health and fitness event of the year was also a momentous occasion as it set the standards for future online events in the new normal. 

“We needed to rise up to the challenge. We knew it was going to be tough but we stayed focused and if we’re able to pull this off successfully then at least we are able to provide a template for the industry to learn from and use. We soldiered on despite the challenges to show that it can be done,” said Century Pacific Food Inc. EVP & COO Greg Banzon. He also added, “It’s important to stage the event to provide inspiration and a good benchmark for the country to put health, wellness and fitness as the top priority.”

The success of the event amid the pandemic made their victory even more memorable for both Samantha (27) and Sam (30). Sam, who is a professional commercial model, admitted that one of the most challenging part of the competition was trying to stay healthy given the restrictions of the pandemic.   Meanwhile, Samantha, who is a former Miss Grand International Philippines winner, had to strengthen her focus and remain creative in her home workouts, even when she could not go the gym. Their persistence and commitment to stay strong and focused paid off when they were proclaimed winners of the biggest health and fitness competition in the country.

Samantha and Sam bested 25 other Superbods candidates and will each take home Php 500,000 tax-free cash and other amazing prizes. Both winners passed rigorous digital challenges required during the competition to emerge as the new ambassadors of Century Tuna Superbods 2020—health and fitness advocates who are passionate in promoting health and wellness as an everyday commitment especially during these trying times. They are also exceptional individuals who remain optimistic and believe in getting back up again even after falling so many times.

Meanwhile, the runners-up were Superbod 2020 Stunner Candice Ramos and Superbod 2020 Ageless Erie Matic. Other candidates who took home special awards were Shirley Garcia, Zai Ebido, Enzo Bonoan, Samantha Purvor, Philippe Magalona, Nelson Banzuela, Key Trajano, Albert Lorenzo, and Grace Del Rosario.

The 25 finalists were all strong contenders, showcasing inspiring traits and skills to encourage themselves and their fellow Filipinos to keep going, and remain healthy and strong during these trying times.

The finalists were judged by a distinguished panel of judges. Joining Century Pacific Food Inc. EVP & COO Greg Banzon, Century Tuna marketing director Carlo Endaya, triathlete and SEA Games gold medalist Nikko Huelgas, GMA Network senior assistant vice president for alternative productions Gigi Santiago-Lara, Isabelle Daza, Alice Dixson, Sarah Lahbati, Ina Raymundo, and DJ Toni Tony.

The health and fitness competition was relaunched last July 25 with a more inclusive and relevant #StayStrongPilipinas theme. To signal its resumption, Century Tuna released a rousing video via its official Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/centurytuna), featuring Century Tuna celebrity ambassadors Nadine Lustre and Alden Richards with the Superbods finalists urging everyone to stay strong and to continue pursuing their dreams of a healthier future through proper diet and exercise.

To relive the “Century Tuna EverybodSuperbod 2020” finals, visit and follow
Century Tuna’s Facebook page, @centurytuna or Instagram @centurytunasuperbods.

BDO Unibank wins Bronze Award at the Asia Sustainability Reporting Awards (ASRA)

 

Partner for Social Progress. CSRWorks International recognized BDO Unibank, Inc.’s Sustainability Report with a Bronze Award in the First Time Reporter category of its 5th Asia Sustainability Reporting Awards (ASRA). BDO is the only awarded Philippine bank this year.


BDO Unibank, Inc. received the Bronze Award in the First Time Reporter category at the prestigious 5th Asia Sustainability Reporting Awards (ASRA)—the only awarded Philippine bank this year.


The First Time Reporter award is given to inaugural and well-rounded sustainability reports that demonstrate the company’s long-term approach to integrating sustainability practice into its business operations.


Winning entries in the category are judged on “strategic approach to sustainability, meaningful and relevant leadership opening statement, coverage of all significant sustainability impacts of the business, approach to stakeholder engagement, and clear presentation of multi-year sustainability performance results.”


BDO’s award-winning report affirms the bank’s leadership in sustainability reporting and commitment to creating long-term value for stakeholders.


Banking and Sustainability


BDO’s Sustainability Report, released last year, outlines the bank’s economic, environmental, social, and governance performance in 2018. It shows how BDO stays true to its sustainability philosophy to achieve resilience by incorporating sustainability in the way it does business and to embed sustainability principles in its decision-making, relationship assessment, and product development processes.

Prepared in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards, the report also details how the financial institution does its part in being a positive force for progress, opportunity, and sustainability in the communities it serves.


“Banking and financial services play a critical role in helping drive sustainable development. Our ability to provide financial access to the majority of the population is vital in creating a more equitable society. By leveraging on our resources, we strive to be the country’s partner for social progress,” says Nestor Tan, president and chief executive officer of BDO.


Sustainability Warriors

The non-profit ASRA is organized annually by Singapore-based CSRWorks International. This year’s winners were selected from 461 entries from 16 countries in Asia. It saw 80 shortlisted companies from 13 countries competing in the finals across 19 awards categories.

Rajesh Chhabara, managing director of CSRWorks International and the founder of ASRA, said: “The unprecedented global pandemic caused by COVID-19 is a stark reminder that businesses, governments and societies need to work together to build mutual resilience. Adopting responsible environmental, social, and governance practices has become ever more essential to ensure corporate sustainability.”

Besides BDO, three other Philippine companies were honored at the ASRA, including SM Investments Corporation, which received a Bronze Award in the Asia’s Best Sustainability Report (Digital) category.

“We have a strong commitment to sustainability. Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards and practices are at the core of how we run our business because they are aligned with our ‘We Find Ways’ service philosophy. These principles remain our cornerstone as we continue to evolve to serve the needs of our clients and contribute to social progress,” said Teresita Sy Coson, chairperson of BDO.



Thursday, September 17, 2020

BDO Network Bank brings its exemplary community service online

BDO Network Bank (BDONB) has been more than just a business in the communities that it serves. The rural bank has become a valuable member of each community, responding to their financial needs and even beyond.

SAMA-SAMA TAYO. Despite the ongoing pandemic and the enforcement of the enhanced community quarantine, BDO Network Bank continues to serve its clients, especially small businesses urgently in need of a financial boost during these tough times


However, the various lockdowns have put many businesses on hold. As a result, business owners and their employees find themselves struggling to maintain their livelihoods.


A loan as a lifeline

As sales dwindle for many businesses due to the lack of customers, loans from banks and financial institutions are necessary to keep them afloat and tide them over until the economy recovers.


This was true for a 51-year old seamstress in Davao City, who was struggling to sustain her sewing and apparel business. She was lucky enough to receive a huge order for washable face masks but she still had a problem. Due to slow business in previous months, she didn’t have enough capital to buy raw materials to produce what her customer ordered. 


The seamstress approached several banks and lending institutions, but her loan application was denied, as they were not granting loans during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ). Feeling hopeless, she thought that she was going to lose the big order from the customer and the earnings that she badly needed.


Fortunately, she was approached by BDONB’s MSME Matina Team. Said team has been proactively calling up entrepreneurs to find out how the Bank could help, knowing that businesses urgently needed a financial boost during these times.


After talking to the seamstress, BDONB assured her that it can grant her a loan even during ECQ, taking away her distress and despair. As a result, she was able to fulfill her buyer’s order and provide income not only for herself but for her workers and their families. The masks she made also helped the community at large by providing them protection from the pandemic.


The loan had a ripple effect as it made it possible for the seamstress to buy from her cloth supplier and benefit his business as well.


Walking the extra mile: onsite and online

BDONB employees are known in their communities as reliable partners during times of need, often going the extra mile to make transactions and life, in general, easier for bank clients. For instance, it’s not unusual for BDONB employees to meet up with clients at the checkpoints to process much-needed transactions if travel restrictions prevent clients from going to the bank.

However, as the pandemic continues to disrupt the way of life, the face-to-face, physical contact, and reassuring personal touch with the community that BDONB employees are accustomed to will have to be put on hold.


The solution that BDONB now offers to its clients, who are used to the warm, assuring community outreach of the bank’s employees, is to create its own social media community. This community will be gathered in the official BDONB Facebook Page, which was recently launched by the rural bank.


"BDO Network Bank has been looking forward to an official Facebook page. And for us, this is the best time, as the team is geared up and more forearmed to support an online community. After a year from our rebrand, we deem this is the best follow through to continuously propagate brand awareness and improve our customer engagement,” BDO Network Bank president J.Antonio S. Itchon said.


"More importantly, we are a proponent of driving inclusive economic growth through our relevant financial products and services. We support our clients' aspirations and business needs, especially in unserved and underserved communities. By launching our own FB page, we envision to exponentially grow the number of lives that we can change and prosper,” he added.



BDO Network Bank’s Facebook page will serve as its alternative channel in reaching out to the communities it serves. The platform will complement its on-ground services such as answering to product inquiries, conducting financial wellness roadshows, and getting customer feedback. All these can be done on its official Facebook page without the need for face-to-face engagement or visiting BDO Network Bank branches.


Visit BDO Network Bank’s Official Facebook Page here: https://www.facebook.com/BDONetworkBankPH