Leveling Up on Our 14th Year: Majayjay CSR Bridging Advocates (MacBridge)
Since we can’t, we bridge.
On our 14th Year, Marino World has decided to focus on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) with an odd twist: imploring (instead of giving) on persons and parties with bigger hearts for the needs of little people. After all, what may be spent on an executive lunch in Metro Manila could fund a week of feeding a class of malnourished kids.
Yes, there are bigger needs like facilities and infra of technologies. But as a pragmatic approach, we shall not compete against those of bigger requirements; just on the basics, accepting one sees less of the sky when at the lowest of the totem pole.
Marino World has adopted the mountain town of Majayjay, Laguna, to concentrate what little we may initially gather. We have started at Barangay Bukal, the poorer sector of this 5th classed municipality at the foot of Mount Banahaw, about 200km south of Manila.
Most are marginal vegetable farmers, tilling plots rather than farms, on borrowed capital at high interest.
If we add the needs of the 39 other barangays of Majayjay ---even just the bare basics --- our CSR may be puny and funny. But we take courage from urban mangangalakal, picking garbage for a living and becoming the nexus in the recycling of waste vital to the environment.
Our initial efforts are very encouraging. The Rotary Club of Makati-Buendia endorsed the community application for a Global Grant, enabling Bukal Elem School to repair toilets and water troughs, complete a covered pathway. Much more, these are just parts of a potable water filtration system funded by the RC of Pintung South (RoC-Taiwan) matched by The Rotary Foundation (TRF), USA.
The Intl Maritime Employers’ Council (IMEC) had journeyed to Majayjay to explain its Cadetship Program, an almost all-expense paid, four-year scholarship grant --- with a job waiting right after graduation. Indeed, it is a historic opening for those who want a career in merchant maritime, for rural kids to be uniquely Mariners from the Mountain.
Globe Maritime Training Center, after donating electric ceiling fans and umbrellas, recently opened opportunities for fishermen, over 40 guys responding with keen interest.
But, we are also on the chase of donors for nebulizers, first aid kits, feeding assistance --- a ton of small gestures for the challenged. It is not that we are Diogenes looking for the honest one.
MacBridge is just guided by his lamp in seeking those ready to payback the community for their good fortunes. After all, good deeds should come not from chatter of lips but from the goodwill of hearts.
We are getting encouraging response from the Norwegian Shipowners Association, to give students of our adopted areas a chance on its excellent Cadetship Program. We may be able to organize for next school-year batch, prayerfully.
Since we can’t, we look for those who could --- appeal before them to, nag if need be!