TUBA, Benguet – Philex Mining Corp.’s Poro Point Installation, in La Union, spent P694,862 for its 2017 program on corporate social responsibility (CSR), exceeding its allotted budget and bringing to P947,477.75 the total cost of projects implemented over five years from 2013.
With a population of 7,520, the company’s host village of Poro, in the capital city of San Fernando, has been the recipient of such projects as coastal cleanup and declogging of canals, distribution of relief goods, and seminars on pollution control.
“We are happy to be of help to our host barangay here, and we have forged good relations with the community,” said Catherine Pangan, Community Relations (ComRel) officer at the Poro Point Installation, situated on the coastal village of Poro and from where Philex Mining ships its gold-and-copper concentrates to a refinery abroad for further processing.
In a report, Pangan said the social projects implemented through the company’s Social Development and Management Program (SDMP) have four components, namely, health, education, infrastructure, and sociocultural. The projects that support community’s various media and public programs, on the other hand, fall under the Information, Education, and Communications (IEC) campaign, and those in support of trainings for managers and geology/engineering students and professionals are carried out through the Development of Mining Technology and Geosciences (DMTG).
Pangan revealed, meanwhile, that the company is considering a proposal by Godofredo Hufana, chairman of Brgy. Poro, which has 1,834 households in 12 zones, to use the unspent SDMP budget of P703,303.80-in the five years to 2017 for the improvement of roads and the construction of a canal to prevent flooding in some areas.
In his March 5 letter to Milton Agyao, Philex Mining’s division manager for Poro Point Installation, Hufana also thanked the company for its help in community development. “We convey our profound gratitude for your unending support to our Barangay,” he said.
Having made education as one of her pet projects, Pangan recalled that Philex Mining had distributed raincoats to 848 students at a public elementary school and a day-care center in San Fernando last June. The event, dubbed “Lusubin ang Ulan ng Karunungan” (Wade Through the Rain of Knowledge), brought Poro Point personnel to the San Agustin (Poro) Elementary School and the Poro Child Development Center, both in Brgy. Poro, and met with their respective students of 800 and 68.
She said Poro Point shelled out a total of P382,030 for its 2017 SDMP projects, despite having an allotted budget of P262,643.81 only, since there had been unspent budget in the previous years that was carried over to the succeeding years. For the same year, Poro Point also spent P170,760.14 for its IEC projects as against the P52,528.76 budget, and P142,072 for the DMTG as compared to its supposed budget of P35,019.17.
This, despite having a 2017 budget for SDMP, IEC, and DMTG of P350,191.74 only. “We exceeded the required projects last year,” Pangan said. “And although there had been some delay on some projects in the previous years, owing to unforeseen events, we remain committed to help in community development, environmental protection, and economic development.”