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PLDT-Smart Foundation seals partnership with ASA Philippines

The partnership with the microfinance giant will enable PSF to push through with three focus initiatives under its ‘Equip, Train, and Connect’ principle.

PLDT-Smart Foundation (PSF), as part of its 30th anniversary celebration this year, has inked a two-year partnership with non-profit, non-stock microfinance firm, ASA Philippines Foundation, to empower underprivileged communities through education and livelihood opportunities.

The partnership with the microfinance giant will enable PSF to push through with three focus initiatives under its ‘Equip, Train, and Connect’ principle. These are the ‘Smart carts’ which are customized vending pedicabs packaged with Smart Retailer Kits, the Extraordinary Mobile Library that can travel to far-flung areas bringing digital-powered learning tools to students, and the PLDT and Smart School-in-a-Bag that packs a laptop for teachers, and ten tablets for students equipped with learning materials compliant with the Department of Education’s MATATAG program.

“As we mark our 30th year, we continue to partner with like-minded organizations to ensure that no one is left behind. We are happy to collaborate with ASA Philippines to provide meaningful access to education, livelihood opportunities, and financial services to more Filipinos,” said Esther O. Santos, PSF President.

“This partnership marks an important step in our shared objectives of empowering communities and promoting sustainable development, uplifting the lives of the underprivileged sector. This initiative is focused on improving the availability of vital resources, providing important skills, and closing the gap in digital access for our clients. With PSF, we hope to uplift more marginalized sectors, equip them with the necessary tools, and empower them to thrive in the digital era,” said Kamrul Tarafder, ASA Philippines Foundation President and CEO.

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Manuel V Pangilinan, Chairman and President of PLDT and Smart Communications, Inc., was present to support the partnership. Also present in the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement were ASA Philippines Foundation President and CEO Kamrul H. Tarafder alongside ASA Philippines COO Maria Regina Pacifico and ASA executives and leadership team. Representing the MVP Group Tulong Kapatid were PSF President Ma. Esther O. Santos, Smart’s VP and Head of Customer Development and Support Jacqueline Bocalan, and TV5 Alagang Kapatid Foundation, Inc. Executive Director Menchie Silvestre.

The MOA signing was also supported by PSF Trustees Victorico P. Vargas as well Cignal TV President and Chief Executive Officer Jane J. Basas.

For thirty years now, PSF has provided opportunities for every Filipino to thrive through its various efforts and activities. As the social outreach arm of PLDT and Smart, PSF continues to create programs focused on education, livelihood and social enterprise, disaster response and recovery, youth arts, and sports development.

The upcoming programs with ASA Philippines reinforce PLDT, Smart and PSF’s commitment to the fulfilment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly UNSDG No. 4, Quality Education; UNSDG No. 8, Decent Work and Economic Growth, and UNSDG 17, Partnership for the Goals. All these are geared towards fulfilling the needs and uplifting the quality of life of Filipinos.

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