An estimated 780 indigenous peoples (IPs) and tourism workers in the city whose livelihood was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic received Christmas packs filled with five kilos of rice and other food essentials from SM City Puerto Princesa on Thursday.
A statement released through the office of public relations officer Russell Fernandez said the first batch of Christmas packs was distributed on December 17 to 412 members of the Honda Bay Boatmen Association, Inc. (HOBBAI) in Barangay Sta. Lourdes and Puerto Princesa Underground River (PPUR) in Brgy. Cabayugan.
The second batch was delivered by SM City Puerto Princesa to 368 members of different IP communities on Friday, December 18.
The statement said they are early Christmas treats to the boatmen and IPs whose main livelihoods were lost due to economic disruptions caused by the pandemic.
SM Supermalls continues to implement its programs that support the community despite the challenges brought by the pandemic as a testament to its commitment to community development.
Through Operation Tulong Express (OPTE), a social good program of SM Foundation in collaboration with SM Supermalls and SM Markets, SM already provided various relief initiatives since the start of community quarantines in March.
Community support from SM this year includes donations of protective essentials and equipment to frontliners and medical facilities nationwide, Kalinga packs for indigent communities, cash and relief packs for typhoon-stricken communities, rental discounts to lessors, support to employees, livelihood support to MSMEs, and many more.