As part of its continuing efforts to support vulnerable communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, Ayala Foundation recently kicked off Project #BuyAni, a food assistance initiative for 10,000 families in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
Funded by a grant from the Macquarie Group Foundation, Project #BuyAni seeks not just to provide food for affected communities, but also to source these food items and other essential goods from local farmers and community partners. This way, local farmers and enterprises continue to have a source of income during the pandemic.
To date, Project BuyAni has served 1,426 families in Luzon, 300 families in the Visayas, and 1,262 families in Mindanao.
The project has reached the following communities: Datu Piang, Maguindanao; Cagayan de Oro City; General Santos City; Calauan, Laguna; El Nido, Palawan; Naic, Cavite; Iloilo City; and Bago City.
The most recent distribution was in Barangay Ma-ao, Bago City, focusing on 100 families of senior citizens, persons with disabilities (PWDs), and motorcycle drivers. The community partner for the activity was the Bago City Government Employees Multi-Purpose Cooperative. The city government, the barangay council, and the Ayala Business Club Bacolod also actively supported the initiative.
In Iloilo City, the distribution was held on July 24 in Barangay San Rafael, Mandurriao, Iloilo City, with 200 beneficiaries. The relief packs contained vegetables and fruits from the KASAMA Multi-Purpose Cooperative, with bags/bayongs woven by Tagbak Mat Weavers from Concepcion, Iloilo. The Ayala Business Club also provided valuable support in terms of logistics and local coordination.
In Calauan, Laguna, 800 food packs were distributed to members of the Inang Kalikasan Agriculture Cooperative, on-site security and Makati Development Corporation personnel, and other families living in the Southville 7 relocation community. Each bag contained locally sourced vegetables, dressed chicken, rice, and eggs, using upcycled flour bags made by the parents of students from CENTEX, Ayala Foundation’s education program.
In General Santos City, 400 families coming from the farthest barangays and the indigenous B’laan community received food aid.
In Cagayan de Oro City, food distribution focused on 400 families from the following vulnerable sectors—the Badjao, PWDs, children in conflict with the law, the homeless, and rebel returnees.
In Datu Piang, Maguindanao, food assistance was provided to 60 families living barangay Montay, a weaving community known for beautiful inaul textiles.
In El Nido, Palawan, woven bags sourced from the artisan women weavers were put together by local volunteers, with produce sourced from local farmers.
Project #BuyAni is scheduled to conduct other food distribution activities until August.