The Manny O Group and Wilcon Depot, Inc. continue their joint mission to help build homes and empower indigenous families in the countryside. The Cebu-based holding company and the construction supplies retail chain have handed over P6 million each to Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE)—a non-profit organization that promotes people empowerment through entrepreneurship via its Go Negosyo advocacy—to fund construction of 80 new houses for indigenous families in Sulu.
A formal turnover ceremony was held on May 7, 2017 at The Manny O Group’s Ibiza Beach Club BGC in Taguig City. The donation would fund construction of new homes in Maimbung and Talipao sites of PCE’s Kapatid Village in Sulu.
In February this year, The Manny O Group and Wilcon Depot initially donated P6 million each to the same project to Gawad Kalinga Community Development Foundation, which is also collaborating with PCE for the latter’s Negosyo Para sa Kapayapaan sa Sulu, a government-led initiative that aims to bring about rehabilitation to the province.
“We’re building homes in Sulu with inspiration from Gawad Kalinga and with the support of The Manny O Group and Wilcon,” said PCE Founder and Chairman Joey Concepcion.
“Helping Sulu, one of the poorest provinces, is the most challenging because of the insurgency going on,” he disclosed. Aside from building houses, PCE and its partners, which also include numerous entrepreneurs and businessmen, also provide livelihood as well as build classrooms and medical facilities across the province.
“By doing these, we are showing to our fellowmen in Sulu that they should not give up because a lot of Filipinos are still behind them. The government is fighting insurgency, while fellow Filipinos are supporting them with livelihood, better classrooms, new houses, etc.,” Concepcion added.
Building homes, providing livelihood
The Sulu project is in line with The Manny O Group’s own housing program. Creating sustainable communities has been the main advocacy of company. It launched its own housing program in December 2014 through its charity arm, Hope Now Philippines Foundation. The initial aim was to help survivors of the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) to rebuild their lives by providing them with safe and decent shelter.
So far, Hope Now Foundation has constructed a total of 160 homes (40 houses each village) in the towns of Hernani (Samar), Madridejos (Cebu), and Alangalang (Leyte) and in Sagbayan in Bohol, which was affected by a strong earthquake that hit the province almost the same time when Yolanda hit Visayas.
“We don’t just give homes. We have to make it sustainable through our livelihood programs,” The Manny O Group Chairman Manny Osmeña told Tech and Lifestyle Journal in an interview during the recent formal turnover ceremony.
Going full circle
Hope Now Foundation granted all its 160 beneficiaries livelihood packages that have helped them rehabilitate their pre-disaster income sources or start new income-generating endeavors so they could support their families.
“We do everything full circle. We provided motorized fishing boats to beneficiaries who were fishermen to restore and increase their fishing capacity. For non-fishing families, we gave away tricycles to give them income source,” Osmeña said. “We also have full time licensed social workers who visit each of the four communities twice a month to further teach the families how to make a living and to be entrepreneurs,” he added.