Last January 31, 2012, AXA Philippines President and CEO, Rien Hermans handed over the proceeds of a month-long campaign initiated by company management to gather financial support from AXA Philippines employees and distributors for the victims of the devastating typhoon Sendong. Typhoon Sendong destroyed thousands of homes and caused millions of pesos in damages in the Northern Mindanao area in late 2011.
The amount was raised through a campaign entitled, Hearts in Action for a Million, wherein AXA Philippines employees, management and distributors contributed financial aid. Some groups even contributed their activity fund, the amount allocated for their group activity and Christmas gathering. The objective was to raise a million pesos in relief funds for the families affected by the disaster.
The campaign was a notable success, raising a total of Php2.1 million in a span of three weeks. A check for Php1.7 million was turned over to the local representative of CARE, a leading, international humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. The remainder of the proceeds was kept in trust to provide direct assistance to employees and distributors of AXA Philippines directly affected by typhoon Sendong.
In October 2011, CARE, AXA Global and Turkey together with AXA Philippines visited Camarines Sur to study the disaster risk management program implemented by CARE’s local arm, ACCORD or Assistance and Cooperation for Community Resilience and Development. Both ACCORD and CARE are working together to teach local communities to be more prepared for natural disasters and to create sustainable livelihoods to enable faster rehabilitation after such terrible events.
The Php1.7 million donated by the Hearts in Action for a Million campaign will be used to provided non-food needs (such as clothing, toiletries, and other basic necessities) of 5,000 families in Iligan who have lost their home and livelihood due to typhoon Sendong. ACCORD and CARE’s priority in the first 3 months is to deliver the necessities, such as food, water, sanitation for these families. Afterwards, they will help these families rebuild their shelter and provide livelihood support. They will also participate in risk reduction and disaster management sessions to better equip them for the uncertainties of the future. ACCORD and CARE will engage the local communities to rebuild their surroundings as well, with regular cleanup and tree-planting activities. The focus is on families in the hard-to-reach areas, and the funds will be allocated where it will create the most impact and given to where it is most needed. As of February 2012, ACCORD and CARE have reached nearly 100% of the target 5,000 families and have provided them the necessary supplies and have conducted several disaster risk management sessions as well. They aim to reach 100% by the end of March and move on to the next phase of coordinating shelter and livelihood recovery.
We have proved that through the generous hearts of employees, management and distributors of AXA Philippines, we are able to generate more than a million pesos to help our brothers and sisters in need. A small part of the proceeds was actually allocated to assist AXA employees that were affected by the typhoon Sendong. The funds raised have contributed a lot in helping families rebuild their lives. Truly, AXA Philippines has gone above and beyond its noble purpose to continuously and consistently support our customers in securing their financial future, by helping the community in Northern Mindanao to start anew and secure a more sustainable future.