The Philippine Gaming and Amusement Corporation (Pagcor) remains true to its commitment as a partner of the government in nation building not only by its sizeable dividend remittances, but through its various corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects as well.
This year, the Pagcor was the biggest dividend contributor among government-owned and –controlled corporations, remitting P16.17 billion to the government.
Chair and CEO Andrea Domingo said among the Pagcor’s more notable CSR programs would be the School Building Program, Christmas gift-giving for indigent beneficiaries, relief operations for calamity victims, and donation of computers and television sets to public schools.
The Pagcor’s School Building Program is carried out in partnership with the Department of Education and the Department of Public Works and Highways. It seeks to alleviate the chronic classroom shortage in the country. It has benefited thousands of public school students nationwide who now enjoy better learning facilities.
Multi- and single-level buildings were donated to over 900 public schools around the country. Among the recipients of the new school buildings are Moonwalk Elementary School in Las Piñas which is now equipped with a spanking-new four-story, 20-classroom building; and Mandaluyong Addition Hills Elementary School which now has a new four-story, 42-classroom building.
Several multi- and single-level buildings were also donated to schools in the regions: Candon National High School and the Tagudin National High School both in Ilocos (two-story, six-classroom buildings); Dumaguete City High School in Central Visayas (three-story, 18-classroom building); and Teofilo V. Frenandez Elementary School and A. Mabini Elementary School in Mindanao (three-story, 18-classroom buildings).
School kits, nutrition
Complementing the School Building Program is the Pagcor’s School Kits for School Kids Program, which provides school supplies to underprivileged public elementary school students.
Since 2016, the Pagcor has been distributing backpacks with school supplies and hygiene kits to thousands of public school students nationwide, thereby helping equip these children with some of the basic necessities for attending school.
The Pagcor’s Feeding Program seeks to improve the nutrition requrements of children enrolled in community-based day care and public schools in cities hosting Casino Filipino branches. Nutritious meals are served to beneficiaries so they can attain their ideal weight.
In what is perhaps a unique display of Filipino creativity, the Pagcor has converted old slot machine stands into functional school desks. Nineteen public schools catering to over 1,000 students have received these welcome additions to their basic classroom furniture.
Recognizing the need for information technology in educating the youth, the Pagcor allocated P240 million for the purchase of 5,000 new personal computers for distribution to various public schools nationwide, under its Handog Computer Program. Beneficiaries include Padre Mariano Gomez Elementary School, Rosauro Almerio Elementary School, Simminublan Elementary School and Bebe Anan Elementary School, among others.
The Pagcor has provided relief to victims of calamities and natural disasters. Last year, the Pagcor donated P35 million to the Albay provincial government during the Mayon eruptions for the establishment of evacuation centers and resettlement areas for refugees.
The Pagcor’s new flagship program assists government’s relief operations by earmarking P2 billion for the construction of evacuation centers for cities and municipalities during calamities.
The Pagcor has also assisted in sociocultural activities.
Recently, the Pagcor lent its support to the 85th PEN International Congress in Manila, the first ever PEN International Congress in Southeast Asia. This gathering of writers from 150 countries underscored the growth and contributions of Philippine literature. It was also a venue for the exchange of ideas and renewal of commitments to freedom of expression.
The Pagcor’s CSR programs have proven their relevance.
“Pagcor is optimistic that the Philippine gaming industry will continue to launch programs and projects that will address some of the basic needs of our people—health, education, environmental protection and culture,” said Domingo.