The Gokongwei Brothers Foundation (GBF) announced on March 17, 2020, the establishment of a P100 million fund to help fight the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. The fund earmarked by GBF is over and above the ongoing initiatives that the various companies under the Gokongwei Group, one of the largest and highly diversified conglomerates in the country, are spearheading on their own.
In announcing its initiative, the philanthropic arm of the Gokongwei Group said that the P100 million fund will be used to support two key beneficiaries: national and local frontline health providers currently serving in various hospitals to combat the dreaded disease and the local communities where the conglomerate’s various businesses operate.
As an immediate step, GBF will provide urgently needed personal protective equipment (PPE) such as surgical masks for healthcare frontliners, as well as rapid test kits. The U.P. Medical Foundation and PGH Medical Foundation are among the select institutions in GBF’s priority list.
Alongside GBF’s efforts, the various companies of the Gokongwei Group have also stepped up their efforts to render assistance to their various stakeholders.
From URC, its food manufacturing arm, the conglomerate is donating food products that are basic necessities such as Great Taste coffee, Magic Crackers, Nissin Cup Noodles, Refresh Mineral Water, and Vitasoy drinks, which they intend to distribute to health workers in different hospitals now at the frontlines of the battle against the pandemic.
Its real estate property arm, Robinsons Land Corp. (RLC), is providing support for the purchase of test kits for various hospitals in the NCR. RLC will also be waiving rental charges for all non-operational tenants of its various malls for the period during which the mall is closed because of the community quarantine. Through the rent condonation, RLC can assist their tenant establishments reallocate funds and allow them to extend financial assistance to their employees for this emergency.
Robinsons Bank has announced that it is offering its customers an extension of the payment period for their various loan products.
Its retail arm, Robinsons Retail Holdings, Inc., through its various stores such as Robinsons Supermarkets, Rustan’s Marketplace, Shopwise, Ministop convenience stores, and drugstore chains South Star Drug and TGP (The Generics Pharmacy), has been operating to continuously serve the needs of Filipinos consumers during the enhanced community quarantine.
Since the COVID-19 situation escalated, Cebu Pacific has been enabling passengers who have flights until April 30 the opportunity to rebook their flights anytime until June 30, or place the cost of the ticket in a travel fund to be used for future travel.