The Villar SIPAG (Social Institute for Poverty Alleviation and Governance) aims to bring Filipinos out of poverty and hunger, and this year, it recognized 22 cooperatives for their contribution in improving the quality of life of Filipinos, especially in the countryside.
Former senate president Manny Villar and Sen. Cynthia Villar led the virtual turnover ceremony which featured cooperatives from different parts of the country. The event capped the birthday celebration of Manny, the founding chairman of Villar SIPAG.
The awardees each received P250,000 in cash. Three cooperatives, which received special citations, were granted P100,000 each.
“Cooperatives play a significant role in realizing the aspirations of our countrymen, especially those from rural areas. They are the true epitome of Sipag at Tiyaga, values that have helped me succeed in my career as a businessman and a public servant,” Manny said.
“Through this recognition, we hope to inspire and encourage cooperatives to continue with their work to uplift the lives of their communities,” added Senator Cynthia, the director of Villar SIPAG.
One of the awardees is the Golden Group Gabay Puhunan Brotherhood MPC from San Fernando City, Pampanga. The credit cooperative started its humble beginnings in 1990, when a group of 15 market vendors pooled their resources to help each other improve their economic plight through savings or paluwagan with low-interest rates and cross patronage of their products and services.
It has now grown to more than 5,000 members composed of market vendors, farmers and fisherfolk, service providers, and micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSME), with total assets amounting to P796 million. The cooperative has expanded to include real estate and solar power generation in their business.
Another awardee, the CAMSUR Multipurpose Cooperative from Pili, Camarines Sur, has been supporting its farmer and MSME members, who have grown to nearly 2,500 since it was established in 2000. With assets amounting to P195 million, the cooperative helps create jobs, promotes business opportunities, and sustains the farm production of its members. The group has taught its members’ entrepreneurial skills and financial literacy while advancing the production of organic fertilizers to improve soil condition.
The 2020 Winners of the Villar SIPAG awardees on Poverty Reduction:
- Mandaluyong Traders Development Cooperative (Inocentes St., Barangay Pag-asa, Mandaluyong City)
- Segunda Mana (2002 Jesus St., Pandacan, Manila c/o Fr. Anton Pascual)
- Lamut Grassroots Savings and Development Cooperative (LAGSADECO) (Poblacion East, Lamut, Ifugao)
- Piddig Bassi Multipurpose Cooperative (Barangay 2, Anao, Piddig, Ilocos Norte)
- Golden Group Gabay Puhunan Brotherhood MPC (Del Pilar, San Fernando City, Pampanga)
- Caniogan Credit and Development Cooperative (Malolos City, Bulacan but has 11 branches in Bulacan)
- Taytay Development Cooperative (Taytay, Rizal)
- Tayabas Community Multipurpose Cooperative (Quezon Ave., San Roque Zone 1, Tayabas City, Quezon)
- Yakap at Halik Multipurpose Cooperative (Barangay Walay, Padre Burgos, Quezon)
- CamSur Multipurpose Cooperative (Pili, Camarines Sur)
- Barcelona Development Cooperative (BADECO) (Poblacion Sur, Sorsogon)
- Lezo Multipurpose Cooperative (Poblacion, Lezo, Aklan)
- First Consolidated Coop along Tanon Seaboards (Toledo City, Cebu)
- Palompon Community Multipurpose Cooperative (Rizal St., Palompon, Leyte)
- Almeria Seafarers Multipurpose Cooperative (ASEMCO) (Poblacion, Almeria, Biliran)
- Cassava Growers Processor Association or CAGAPA (Dapitan City, Zamboanga Del Norte)
- Panabo Multipurpose Cooperative (Panabo City, Davao Del Norte
- Kapalong Cooperative (Kapalong, Davao Del Norte)
- San Francisco Growth Enhancement Multipurpose Cooperative (San Francisco, Agusan Del Sur and now has branches in Caraga, Compostella Valley, and in Misamis Oriental).
Recipients of the Villar SIPAG Special Awards are:
- Nagbacalan Loom Weavers Multipurpose Cooperative (Barangay 22, Nagbacalan, Paoay, Ilocos Norte)
- Samahang Magpapatubig ng Mansalay, Inc. (Barangay Roma, Mansalay, Oriental Mindoro)
- Ig-Abai Small Farmers Coconut and Agricultural Organization (Balabagan, Lanao Del Sur)