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Manulife, LGU of Muntinlupa, GK hold final turn over of Manulife Muntinlupa GK Village and YDC
By: Marlyn Importante

The LGU of Muntinlupa in partnership with Manulife and Gawad Kalinga held the final turnover of Manulife Muntinlupa Gawad Kalinga (GK) Village to 124 homeowners in Barangay Putatan last September 15, 2017. Highlights of the event were the awarding of the Certificate of Units to the families and the ribbon cutting ceremony of the Youth Development Center or CYD. The awarding ceremony was led by Mayor Jaime R. Fresnedi together with Congressman Ruffy Biazon; Ryan Charland, President and CEO of Manulife Philippines; Hon. John T. Holmes, Ambassador of Canada to the Philippines; Mamerto Epino, President of GK Manulife Homeowners Association; Engr. Francisco Balagtas, GK Muntinlupa-Parañaque Coordinator and Marlyn Importante, GK Partnership Manager. Also present is Ms. Alita Ramirez, the head of Urban Poor Affairs Office (UPAO) whose office is tasked to accommodate urban poor concerns within the city, managed the Socialized Housing program.

On this day, 124 families transformed their lives from renting units and living in endangered areas and disputed land to owning their homes. As Mayor Fresnedi told the homeowners, “You have your new address and beautiful units, these happen because of our partnership with Manulife Philippines and Gawad Kalinga.” Congressman Biazon also affirmed, “Your rights have been taken cared off, because one of the basic human rights is to have a shelter”. Mamerto Epino, the President of GK Manulife Homeowners Association shared the new homeowners’ gratitude, “Sa araw na ito aming natanggap and katibayan ng aming paninirahan, mapalad po kami na sa 5 million na gustong tulungan ng Gawad Kalinga, kami ay kabilang sa nabiyayaan.” Gawad Kalinga is building communities to end poverty for 5 million Filipino families.

Having a permanent shelter and home to call their own is a dream to every Filipino. For the homeowners, this vision started in 2010 when Manulife Philippines and Manulife Business Processing Services partnered with the City of Muntinlupa and Gawad Kalinga. “We have always aspired to help Filipinos achieve their dreams and aspirations, whatever their goals in life, we want to be there for them and help them start their stories” message of Ryan Charland of Manulife Philippines President and CEO to the homeowners.

The occasion also marked the opening of the new Youth Development Center, which will serve as a venue for the community to celebrate the forthcoming milestones in their lives as well as host for their various child and youth programs. “We are particularly excited about the Child and Youth Center which I feel would be the heart of community. With the center, there is now a safe environment where the children can learn, hone their talents and grow to become decent individuals,” added Mr. Charland. John T. Holmes, the new Canadian ambassador to the Philippines, also shared his excitement with the new CYD building and congratulates everyone for their efforts. He stressed that “partnership between communities, governments and private sectors are increasingly critical in development project. Private sectors are becoming more aware of their responsibilities not only to their shareholders but also to their communities”.

Engr. Francisco Balagtas, the GK Muntinlupa-Parañaque Coordinator ended the momentous occasion with this thought for the homeowners, “Use this opportunity. Use your talent and effort to prepare your life to go further. You are now the steward of his village. This maybe our final turnover (for the village) but it doesn’t mean we will leave you behind”.

This is just one effort of caring and sharing. You too can support and be one of Gawad Kalinga's partner in improving the quality of lives of the poor. Give now to our Community Programs today.

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