Sta Elena Corp. partners with SM in giving Yolanda survivors a new home
After years of collective efforts and hard work, SM Cares has completed the building of 1,000 houses for the supertyphoon “Yolanda” survivors in Cebu, Iloilo and Leyte.
Together with the Sta. Elena Construction Corp. known as the SM’s trusted contractor and partner, the building of 200 houses in Bogo City, Cebu; 200 houses in Concepcion, Iloilo; 400 houses in Tacloban, Leyte; and 200 in Ormoc, Leyte was made possible.
The company’s president and CEO Alice Eduardo was present on the event entitled Isang Pasasalamat: The SM Cares Housing Project Thanksgiving Dinner at the Forbes Ballroom of Conrad Manila as SM expressed gratitude and gave honor to their business partners, employees, and members of the community who also have a huge contribution to the building of the homes.
SM Cares also cited partner nongovernment organizations who had been assigned per each village to—with the help of local governments—identify the selected beneficiaries and handle the community development function for each village. These include the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation, Inc. for Bogo, Cebu; Jaro Archdiocesan Social Action Center & Daughters of Charity for Concepcion, Iloilo; Couples for Christ and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Palo for Tacloban, Leyte; and also the Palo archdiocese for Ormoc, Leyte.
The houses built are disaster-resilient and can withstand typhoons with a maximum wind velocity of 250 kph.
Residents were also given an opportunity to be involved in their own community by allowing them to engage in various activities and programs such as livelihood and values formation seminars, membership in local cooperatives, tree-planting activities rehabilitation assistance of local establishments, and waste segregation.
In his speech, SM Prime Holdings, Inc. chair of the executive committee Hans T. Sy gave tribute to the “generous hearts that made the Yolanda Housing Project a reality.”
“The houses you gave are no longer just walls and a roof, they are homes to families who can sleep better at night,” he said. “The community centers you built are no longer just buildings, they are venues of visioning sessions, of Eucharistic celebrations; the basketball courts are no longer concrete slabs, they are venues to build friendships, and team work, to see toddlers take their first steps.”
“What started out as a vision borne out of compassion and social responsibility became a move to heed our patriotic duty to answer the call of nation-building. The SM Cares Housing Project for the survivors of Supertyphoon ‘Yolanda’ is a living testimony that much can be done if we all work together and move in one direction with the goal of helping our fellow men in need.”