Campaigns & Grey to support 34 scholars at Smokey Mountain

Winston Churchill once said, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” The saying rings true for the team at Campaigns & Grey, a Grey Group company, whose big hearts and efforts have manifested positive changes in their society. For the past ten years, the team at Campaigns & Grey has been granting scholarships to children from Smokey Mountain – a poverty-stricken part of Manila commonly referred to as a “rubbish dump”. To raise the necessary funds needed to support these scholars, the team holds an annual Plate for a Cause event, where all proceeds go to the Smokey Mountain scholarship program.

Plate for a CauseThe yearly Plate for a Cause affair sees participation of the employees at Campaigns & Grey whipping up their best home-cooked dishes and bringing them to the office. The employees get the opportunity to partake a sumptuous buffet spread at P350 per plate or an “all-you-can-eat” deal for P750. The proceeds collected from the sale of food go to the Smokey Mountain scholarship fund. This year is the tenth year of the fund raiser and the team aims to raise PHP 113,000.00 to support 34 scholars for the academic year of 2013-2014.

A forgotten part of sprawling and bustling Manila, Smokey Mountain is a poverty-stricken area that is home to tens of thousands of people who scavenged for their livelihood, picking through rubbish at Smokey Mountain. Such daily struggle often results to education being an impossible luxury to attain for the children who live here, who more often than not are also asked to work and forsake school in order to help their families place food on the table.

Through events like Plate for a Cause as well as personal time and effort, the team at Campaigns & Grey has been helping the children in Smokey Mountain to return to school and attain an education like most of their peers. The result of the consistent efforts for the past ten years has been nothing but inspiring. The scholarship program sees nine scholars graduating from high school, and four currently enrolled in college. One Campaigns & Grey Smokey Mountain scholar is now a public school teacher and comes back to teach current scholars.

Cherry Gutierrez, Managing Director of Campaigns & Grey and Campaigns Social Response (CSR), the agency’s arm for social responsibility, explains that many of the employees also volunteer their personal time to take the Smokey Mountain children on yearly field trips to places such as the National Museum, Children’s Museum and national parks. These children were also invited to the company’s events like the Christmas party in 2011 where part of the program was filled with games and activities designed for the children to enjoy the spirit of Christmas.

Group Chairperson of Campaigns & Grey, Yoly Ong, said that it boils down to responsibility to society. “Plate for a Cause is just one of the many avenues that we will continuously explore in order to give back to community in whatever way we can. I hope that our past efforts over the years are able to help our underprivileged brothers and sisters, and we are looking forward to more undertakings to help increase the literacy rate in Smokey Mountain,” she commented.

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