One Meralco Foundation (OMF), the Manila Electric Company’s (MERALCO) social development arm, has mobilized to help thousands of homeless families and frontline medical personnel heavily impacted by the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak and the current enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) imposed on Metro Manila and the rest of Luzon.
Without a roof over their heads, families living on the streets are among the most vulnerable as they are exposed to the elements and lack access to the basic necessities.
In partnership with TV5's Alagang Kapatid Foundation (AKFI), Maynilad, and the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), OMF distributed food packs on March 24, benefiting 200 families living along Kalayaan and E. Rodriguez avenues in Quezon City, and 500 marginalized families at Brgy. Buting, Pasig City.
In addition, the foundation gave out care packages in Tondo, Manila (300 families); Bacoor, Cavite (300 families); Brgy. Talon Cuatro, Las Pinas City (100 families); Pateros City (400 families); Brgy. Bukana, Ternate, Cavite (300 families); Malabon City (300 families); Caloocan City (300 families); Navotas City (150 families); Antipolo City, Rizal (200 families); Marikina City (300 families); Mandaluyong City (200 families); and San Juan City (200 families).
It also launched an internal online campaign within the Meralco organization to provide marginalized families in Metro Manila with grocery gift certificates – a project in collaboration with Caritas Manila that raised more than P1.5 million and benefited at least 1,500 families.
Meanwhile, OMF also responded to the needs of private and government-owned referral hospitals for personal protective equipment (PPEs) and basic safety gear for healthcare personnel attending to the rising number of COVID-19 patients. OMF donated 1,000 face masks to the Rizal Medical Center and the Philippine Heart Center, turned over 500 face masks, 450 goggles, and 4,000 surgical gloves to the Philippine General Hospital (PGH), and 2,000 surgical gloves to the Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital and Sanitarium (Tala Sanitarium).
OMF also donated 450 face masks and 2,000 surgical gloves to the Lung Center of the Philippines, and 100 face masks and 400 surgical gloves to Baguio General Hospital.
The Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Sta. Mesa Manila, designated as the main COVID-19 referral hospital of the Metro Pacific Hospitals, received 1,600 face masks and 100 face shields.
The foundation also provided KN95 masks, goggles, and face shields to frontliners of various local governments in the Meralco franchise area, such as Marikina City, Batangas City, and San Pascual, Batangas.
OMF also sponsored the disinfection and decontamination of various offices of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Rizal Medical Center using SteraMist technology, a decontamination system that cleans and sanitizes without downtime.
Additionally, volunteers from Meralco's networks group installed floodlights at the Lung Center of the Philippines’ parking lot, which now serves as an extended triage area for COVID-related cases.
Meralco, through OMF, donated 20 desktop computers to the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) at UP Diliman. Their scientists are set to start sequencing samples from COVID-19 patients to better understand the characteristics of the virus and find ways to stop it from spreading. The institution will also serve as the operations center for a united effort of different volunteer groups within the University of the Philippines system to help respond to the crisis.
eSakay, a Meralco subsidiary, and OMF teamed up with the local government unit of Pasig to shuttle health workers and employees of essential businesses to work. Launched on March 19, it served more than 5,000 passengers – of which 592 were health workers – in the first week alone.
OMF also joined PayMaya in its "One Against COVID-19" project to offer a convenient way to contribute to the initiatives of OMF and other partner organizations. To donate, visit the campaign website at http://pymy.co/onemeralco.