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If each of us takes part in caring and sharing, the overwhelming challenge of poverty can be addressed. Alone we can do so little, but together we can do so much.

Manny O GK Village Turnover in Madridejos, Cebu
[Date Created: January 22, 2015]

by Aldalin Orro

Last December 03, 2014, Manny O. Group Founder and Chairman Manny H. Osmena and Gawad Kalinga had a turnover ceremony of 40 units in Barangay Tugas, Madridejos, Cebu.

Madridejos is one of the three municipalities that comprise the island of Bantayan, which lies to the west of the northern tip of Cebu. With most of its sides bounded by the Visayan Sea, their main livelihood is fishing. It is even here where the first canning factory in the country was established. When Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) struck last November 2013, Bantayan was severely affected.

Shortly after Typhoon Haiyan caused unspeakable damage to the Visayas, Manny O was one of the first to pledge his support to the rebuilding efforts of Gawad Kalinga. Back then, Manny Osmena remarked:

“To see and realize that we share the same vision and direction in our lives, it is just incredible! Tony and I share the same philosophy – for a business to be sustainable, everybody has to progress – the company, the community and the people. We are both committed to be involved in helping the community while we do our respective businesses. After this ‘Yolanda Rebuild Program,’ we will be looking for a long-term and a sustainable solution in helping each other do our part in rebuilding the nation.”

>> Read more in Mövenpick hotel partners with Gawad Kalinga for its Yolanda Rebuild Program

A year later, 40 families affected by Typhoon Yolanda were finally able to move into their new homes and start rebuilding their lives. Present in the turnover ceremony was Manny Osmena with some family and friends, GK Father and Founder Tony Meloto, Mayor Salvador dela Fuente of Madridejos and municipal councilors.

The ceremony was prepared by the beneficiaries with the help of the local government unit (LGU) of Madridejos where they shared in the salo-salo of mouth-watering seafood and fruits. It started with a speech from Manny Osmena, followed by some words from Tony Meloto.

“Today you are recipients of the love and care of God thru the family of Manny Osmeña. You have to return the favor by loving your family and each other in the community,” said Tony Meloto.


The Manny O. GK Village in Tugas, Madridejos is one of four Yolanda villages funded by Manny O. The other three villages are located in Alang-Alang (Leyte), Sagbayan (Bohol) and Hernani (Eastern Samar), which are all under construction.

Manny Osmena is famous for being a wine lover and collector. His Manny O Wines has 7 collections, has won numerous international awards, and is sold in 6 countries. He also owns and manages the Mövenpick Resort and Spa Hotel in Mactan, Cebu.

Gawad Kalinga’s Haiyan Reconstruction Efforts would not be possible without the generous partners and volunteers – young and old, rich and poor, popular and seemingly ordinary – who have stepped up to become heroes for our brothers and sisters in need.

Many villages across the Visayas (like the Manny O GK Village in Madridejos, Cebu) have been turned over to the residents because of the bayanihan of these volunteers, the typhoon survivors, the local government, and partners like Manny Osmena.

But the work is far from over, and there are thousands more who need to be relocated to safe communities like this one. Find out how you can help #endpoverty today.

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