Aboitiz launches sustainable livelihood programs in Marawi

Honing bakers 

Under Kawiyagan (the Maranaon term for ‘livelihood’) program, Aboitiz inaugurated three newly-constructed bakeries and distributed 12 bakery kits to qualified Kilusang Pagbabago affiliated local groups and organizations in Iligan and Marawi through the Office of the Cabinet Secretary – Office of the Participatory Governance.

Each bakery kit contains a steel oven, bread racks, working table, dough roller, display shelf, delivery bicycle, and an initial supply of Pilmico Halal flour. The physical donation is supplemented by bakery training that would help beneficiaries sustain the enterprise.

Mother of five Jasmine Balt, one of the bakery kits beneficiaries speaks in behalf of mothers who have lost their income resources after the harrowing five-month-long siege.

“Kaya nagpapa-salamat ako sa Aboitiz atsaka sa Pilmico na binigyan kami ng ganitong training na bakery. Kung mabigyan po kami ng pagkakataon na magkaroon ng livelihood na bakery, napaka-laking tulong po sa amin, lalo na sa mga mothers na walang kabuhayan ngayon. (I am very thankful to Aboitiz and Pilmico for giving us this training. If we’ll be given the opportunity to have our own bakery as means of livelihood, it would be such a big help, especially for mothers who have no other source of income), Balt said.

Meanwhile, Noni Lao, an evacuee from Raya Saduc, Marawi and another bakery kit beneficiary, said the horrendous experience continues to haunt her, leaving her hopeless at times. “Di ko alam paano kami naka-survive. Gaano ka-rich sa Marawi noon, pare-pareho na kami ngayon, Walang rich, walang poor. Lahat poor. (I don’t know how we survived. No matter how rich you were in Marawi then, we are all the same now. No one’s rich nor poor. Everyone is poor.),” Lao shared.


Yellow corn farmers

Aboitiz forged a partnership with non-stock non-profit Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship’s GoNegosyo to mentor some 200 Maranao yellow corn producing farmers and link them up to potential buyers.

Aboitiz Equity Ventures’ food subsidiary Pilmico and Aboitiz Foundation, together with GoNegosyo and Task Force Bangon Marawi, rolled out a three-year micro-entrepreneurship partnership program for internally displaced people in Balo-i resettlement area.

The idea is to train (through the Kapatid Mentor Me program) and initially finance these farmers. Once they pass the Pilmico corn quality standard, they will supply a portion of its yellow corn requirements for its various feeds products.

To date, the program has conducted several trainings including entrepreneurial mind-setting, values formation, marketing management, basic canvas model, basic accounting, financial management, and basic cooperative management.