BDO Foundation and EWSF: Promoting food security in a disadvantaged community

Slowly but surely, BDO Foundation and East-West Seed Foundation (EWSF) are making significant strides in efforts to promote food security and address hunger.

In an economically disadvantaged community in Lian, Batangas, the two foundations—in partnership with the local government unit—recently celebrated the graduation of 50 individuals who successfully completed nine training sessions on vegetable gardening. The graduation also served as a festival, which gave the farmers an opportunity to market and sell their first full harvest.

The event was witnessed by BDO Foundation president Mario Deriquito, EWSF managing director Ma. Elena Primicias Van Tooren, local officials led by Lian vice mayor Roberto Antonio Leviste, and officers of BDO Unibank and BDO Network Bank branches in the province.

“Each hectare of mixed-crop cluster gardens can feed 400 families with fresh, naturally grown vegetables,” Van Tooren explained. “Per capita, vegetable consumption among beneficiary families can increase by as much as 60 percent with the establishment of the gardens.”

“Thank you to EWSF and the LGU for partnering with us and making this possible. We are inspired by the success of this endeavor and look forward to replicating the project in other parts of the country,” Deriquito said as he congratulated the community of farmers in Lian.

The municipality serves as the pilot site of the Gulayamanan initiative of BDO Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of BDO Unibank, and EWSF. A non-governmental organization that empowers disadvantaged farmers, EWSF promotes proper nutrition through improved vegetable consumption.

The result of an agreement signed by the partners last year, the project aims to provide additional food supply to the community and enable beneficiaries, who lack livelihood opportunities, to earn income through the selling of high-quality vegetables.

The beneficiaries, who participated in a financial literacy training session conducted by BDO volunteers, are now equipped with knowledge on how to manage their earnings.

Supportive of Sustainable Development Goals in the areas of food security and poverty alleviation, Gulayamanan ensures the availability, accessibility and affordability of food in the community. The initiative is in line with the shared advocacy of BDO Foundation and EWSF to support underserved sectors of society.


About BDO Foundation

BDO Foundation is the corporate social responsibility arm of BDO Unibank. Founded in 2008, the foundation aims to contribute to nation-building by addressing the needs of underserved sectors of society through its disaster response and financial inclusion advocacies. Supported by the BDO Unibank community and in partnership with local government units and non-governmental organizations, BDO Foundation mounts relief operations, rehabilitates rural health units, constructs school buildings, implements financial education programs and undertakes COVID-19 response programs across the country. Its corporate citizenship initiatives have been recognized at the Retail Banking Awards of Asian Banking & Finance magazine and Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards of Enterprise Asia. For more information, visit, e-mail or call 8840-7000 local 36046.

BDO Foundation, Inc.

10th Floor BDO Corporate Center Ortigas

12 ADB Avenue, Ortigas Center

Mandaluyong City 1550

Engage and Participate