Last November 28, fifteen birthday celebrators from GNPower Mariveles Energy Center Ltd. Co. (GMEC) lifted the spirits of around 32 farmers in Barangay Dangcol, Balanga City, Bataan as part of the company’s Project Saysay. With their salakots and long-sleeved shirts on, the employee volunteers visited the beneficiary farmers in their fields, planting and harvesting corn, sweet potatoes, and sweet potato stems with the locals.
GMEC Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) coordinators have been wanting to appreciate local farmers for a long time. This month’s Project Saysay became the perfect avenue to pay tribute to these unsung heroes who religiously provided staple food for the people of the province through the years.
“We’ve been planning this for so long and finally we had the opportunity to bless our local farmers here in Bataan,” said GMEC CSR manager Joseph Chavez. “To put Project Saysay into perspective, GMEC gives premium to all sectors of the community, especially the marginalized. This project helps us connect and experience, even just a glimpse, of what goes through in the daily lives of the different communities we visit each month.”
Aside from helping them plant and harvest some of their crops, the celebrators also donated five kilos of rice, grocery items, a rechargeable sprayer, and assorted gardening tools for each farmer. These new tools will help the beneficiaries become more productive in their future seeding and reaping.
Overall, it was another memorable Project Saysay, as the farmers experienced a one-of-a-kind moment with GMEC employees, who shared a boodle fight, played parlor games, and helped tend their fields with carabaos and scythes. The volunteers also sang some videoke with the farmers after lunch, which added more fun to the affair.
“This month’s Project Saysay made me realize how hard a farmer’s life is and how thankful we should be to them for they are the ones providing us our food on our tables,” said one of the volunteers, Control Room Operator Rainier Juvi Singson from the Operating department. “I’m grateful to GMEC especially the ComRel team for letting us have this experience. It is such a joy that we can also give them a smile with our simple gesture. I have brought home not only memories but also a lesson to my children to not waste food because it is coming from the farmer’s hard work.”
Project Saysay is one of GMEC’s advocacies with the mission to “Plant A Love” among the community through outreach programs led by employee volunteers. This program encourages monthly birthday celebrators in the company to choose a community or group they wish to share their special day with. Moreover, it aims to be an avenue for collective action of employees and be a beacon of hope for their chosen beneficiaries.