Representing the provincial government of Bohol, Atty. Anthony Damalerio expressed his gratitude to Coca-Cola Philippines and Habitat for “this good example of public-private partnership. This is one way to honor our strong commitment to deliver that basic commodity to our barangays.”
Damalerio said that the province’s demand for clean water will be increasing this year since Bohol will be embarking on massive infrastructure projects. Due to this, he explained, providing barangays access to clean and safe drinking water is a topmost priority. “We must not forget the role of our barangays.”
Coca-Cola Philippines Foundation President, Cecile Alcantara, said that the two projects are the company’s way of giving back to the community the water they’ve consumed for their products. “We call this ‘replenish,’ and we are happy to say that we have given back 40 to 50 percent of the water we’ve consumed back to the communities,” she said.
Alcantara also requested local government officials to educate their constituents to take care of the resource entrusted to them. She emphasized that “[since] water is not an infinite resource, we have to conserve it.”
Habitat for Humanity Philippines Managing Director and CEO, Charlie Ayco, says they took on this project as part of the organization’s goals of ensuring that Filipino families can have more decent and secure lives. “We are known for shelter, but in our housing-quality standards, clean water and sanitation are a vital components of a decent home.”
Both the Coca-Cola Company and Habitat for Humanity Philippines see themselves as partners for development, eyeing more projects together with the local government of Bohol to help rebuild the lives of those who have been affected by the 7.2-magnitude earthquake last October 2013.
“Perhaps the blessing is that the earthquake brought us all together, to work together so that we can [also] rise up together,” Coca-Cola’s Alcantara said.