Sunday, June 23, 2024

Accenture PH partners with NGOs to support Pinoys during pandemic

Outsourcing giant Accenture has partnered with Caritas Manila, Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP), and Philippine Business for Education (PBEd) to tackle the country’s hunger, livelihood, and education issues that have been aggravated by Covid-19.

Screenshot shows (from top, left) PBSP executive director Elvin Uy, Caritas Manila executive director Fr. Anton Pascual, PBEd executive director Lovelaine Basillote, Accenture Philippines country manager Lito Tayag, and Accenture Philippines corporate citizenship executive sponsor Louise Sabariaga

Earlier this year, Accenture pledged $5 million or P240 million to respond to Covid-related challenges in the country. Part of this pledge is backing the health, livelihood training, and online learning programs the company initiated with the NGOs.

“These are all part of our drive to be a responsible business. Our commitment to bring about a positive change and improve how our local communities live and work is particularly important during these challenging times,” said Lito Tayag, Accenture Philippines country manager during a press briefing on Thursday, July 22.

In collaboration with Accenture, Catholic social service organization Caritas Manila is overseeing the distribution of gift vouchers to over 180,000 Filipino families nationwide to assist them in their everyday essentials.

“The pandemic brought about serious life-threatening challenges, especially for the poorest of the poor. This partnership aims to help address the dire and basic needs of our fellow Filipinos,” stated Fr. Anton Pascual, Caritas Manila executive director.

“What makes them poor is they don’t have a choice, but we’re giving them the dignity of choice. Because of the gift certificates, they can choose the food that they need.”

In addition to the gift vouchers, Caritas is also managing a six-month feeding program for 5,000 malnourished children in communities within the National Capital Region and NCR Plus.

Business-led organization PBSP is working with Accenture to roll out several livelihood programs to provide poor communities with technical and vocational skills.

These programs include Mask4All, Super Carinderia, and Kada-Uno: The Hunger Program Hope Fund — which all aim to provide livelihood training and assistance to about 14,000 families and almost 1,300 individuals in the NCR plus, Visayas, and Mindanao.

Some of these programs even address several vulnerable groups at once. “For example, for Mask4All PH, we target mainly women. We give them a quick training on preparing facemasks that can be distributed to other indigent communities or populations. So, we give them the skills and give them a few more income opportunities than they would otherwise not have. We also are able to address a public health need by making sure that poor families and poor Filipinos can continue to observe the minimum public health standard,” explained Elvin Uy, PBSP executive director.

Lastly, PBEd, a group focused on improving our educational system, is launching the Kiddie Learning Train (KLT) to address the gaps caused by the country’s shift to distance and online learning.

Currently piloting in Cebu, this volunteer-based community program endeavors to support 1,000 kinder to Grade 3 public school students by bringing them up to speed with fun, gamified lessons on reading, math, and science.

Accenture is assisting KLT’s launch by contributing to the distribution of 1,000 tablets to students and teacher-facilitators.

“We need all the help we can get because good foundations on literacy and numeracy are vital for young learners,” stressed Lovelaine Basillote, PBEd executive director. “This project is an example of the importance of partnerships and how the private sector can have more active involvement in responding to the learning crisis in the country. We hope more are encouraged to do the same.”

The programs are not Accenture’s only efforts to help Filipinos. Using its experience as a leading technology company, the company has also designed its own programs to train promising Filipinos through its Accenture Skills to Succeed Academy and Near-Hire Training.

“As partner to many of the world’s leading organizations, we have an extraordinary opportunity and a tremendous responsibility to make a difference. And with that, we are committed to actually playing our part in transforming our global economy to be more responsible, more sustainable, and work for the benefit of all,” said Louise Sabariaga, Accenture Philippines corporate citizenship executive sponsor.

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