At the crack of dawn one Monday, nine business executives found themselves trading their power suits for a more casual getup and trooping to the country’s Southern Luzon provinces. They are Zuellig Family Foundation’s trustees who all cleared their calendars for an entire day so that for the very first time, they get to visit one of ZFF’s partner-municipality.
Rather than the regular formal meetings to hear about progress reports, the trustees agreed that a site visit would be a better way of knowing and appreciating how the Foundation’s programs and grants have been affecting rural communities.
The trip also involved a visit to the main office in San Pablo City, Laguna, of its program partner, CARD MRI (CARD) which is a microfinance institution serving seven million Filipino clients across the country.
Dr. Aristotle Alip, Managing Director of CARD welcomed the trustees and walked them through their office and their recently-opened business unit, the BotiCARD. This pharmacy is an offshoot of its partnership with ZFF which aims to make affordable medicines readily available to CARD members in different rural villages. Also in the pipeline for implementation is the granting of business loans to health workers from ZFF’s partner-municipalities across the country.