Social Sustainability


Corporate Citizenship and Philanthropy

As a good corporate citizen, we empower the communities we reach and serve through our corporate social responsibility programs and employee volunteerism.

Metrobank Foundation has delivered programs driving several UN SDGs, including grants and social development partnerships, professorial chair lectures, fellowships, scholarship grant, art and science competitions for the youth, teacher recognition, and culture and heritage education program, among noteworthy projects.

Our employees – led by the total of 8,014 volunteers – also contribute to our community-building initiatives: driving support for the Brigada Eskwela; supporting health and learning needs of students in the Bangsaromo Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao; and implementing our Shoebox Project.


The children of the Matigsalug indigenous peoples (IPs) in San Fernando, Bukidnon have little to no access to quality education, just like many of the country’s IPs. They live in a remote town called Sitio Balugo, only accessible via hours-long trekking across muddy roads and 17 rivers.

Very few teachers were willing to go the distance for the sitio kids, except for one. In 2016, Junmerth C. Jorta became a full-time teacher in the newly established school for indigenous students, Keupiyanan Te Balugo. Since then, he has been running programs to fight illiteracy and hunger among the Matigsalug people.

Keupiyanan Te Balugo is a last-mile school, a makeshift school with limited teaching materials and facilities. Determined to provide the Matigsalug community with the education they deserved, Mr. Jorta became ingenious and resourceful. He improvised, localized, and indigenized reading materials that students can bring home and designed a radio-based instruction module. These initiatives proved useful during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when students had to study independently at home.

Mr. Jorta also pays extra attention to pupils who are having a difficult time with the lessons. He conducts special reading sessions in students’ homes and invites their siblings and parents to follow the assignments as well, as many of them don’t know how to read.

Malnutrition is also another issue he had to address. When he first arrived in the sitio, students often dropped out of school because of hunger. So, he partnered with the non-government organization Hapagasa, the Mayor’s Office, and the Department of Agriculture to provide free, nutritionally balanced meals for the students and their families.

As a result of these literacy and nutrition programs, cases of absenteeism and dropouts in the sitio gradually fell. The Matisalug children now have the fighting chance to pursue higher education degrees and break out of the poverty trap.

Above and beyond his call of duty, Mr. Jorta has uplifted the lives, not just of his students, but of the entire Matigsalug community. For all these, Metrobank Foundation, Inc. (MBFI) conferred the title “Metrobank Foundation Outstanding Filipino” to Mr. Jorta. The award is one of the Foundation’s long-running programs that recognizes public servants whose contributions in service and community involvements are geared towards making a difference “Beyond Excellence.”

In addition to providing recognition and cash prize to the awardees, MBFI enables them to further their advocacy, just like Mr. Jorta whose small steps toward giving access to education can go a long mile in eradicating hunger and illiteracy. The awardees also get to create ripples of inspiration in society as they now have the opportunity to be a part of the Metrobank Foundation Fellowship in Public Service (FPS) program where their professional milestones and personal life stories are widely shared through roundtable forums and other public events.

The FPS also serves as a platform for MBFI to help in strengthening institutions through the sharing of best practices for replication.

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