A year after the liberation of Marawi City, The SM Store continues to assist families affected by the siege through its Donate-A-Book, Give the Gift of Wellness, and Share Your Extras social programs.
In a series of ceremonial turnovers held at SM CDO Uptown in Cagayan de Oro City, boxes of clothes, slippers, books, notebooks, school supplies, soaps and hygiene packs from mall shoppers were officially turned over to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region 12 for the benefit of the residents of the Lanao del Sur capital.
“Marawi was chosen as the beneficiary of all our CSR (corporate social responsibility) donations this year because of the devastation the [Islamic] city went through,” The SM Store VP Operations and CSR Head Ma. Cecilia Abreu said.
“Through the donations coming from our customers, we hope that somehow SM can help Marawi residents in their everyday lives and communicate to them that there are a lot of fellow Filipinos who care for them so much,” she continued.
During the onsite distribution of donations in Marawi, families were all smiles, filled with hope and excitement as they received donations from The SM Store. Under the Donate-A-Book program, around 3,650 boxes of books, notebooks and school supplies were turned over for the use of Maranao children in their schooling.
On the other hand, Give the Gift of Wellness distributed over 16,000 bundles of Safeguard soaps; while the Share Your Extras campaign had 295 boxes filled with assorted wears, slippers and hygiene packs to help Marawi families in their everyday sanitary needs.
“The Marawi siege [was] very destructive to the Maranao people especially [when] much of their livelihood was lost,” DSWD Regional Project Coordinator Noraidah Busran said.
“The SM Store was a big help to a lot of people especially in Sarimanok evacuation area. The smile and happiness of the people are priceless,” the DSWD official added.
In May 2017, an urban battle between government forces and militants affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant took place and lasted for five months. This conflict resulted in the loss of lives, homes, and livelihood, with families evacuated to temporary shelters.
The three aforementioned campaigns are just some of the ways The SM Store reaches out to communities in times of need, providing aid to people affected by disasters, natural calamities or conflict like what happened to the more than 200,000 population of the country’s only Islamic city.