The official commencement of the GK-Century Properties Village construction in Hinahon St., Barangay Barangka Drive, Mandaluyong City were led by (foreground from left) Gawad Kalinga Executive Director Jose Luis Oquinena, Century Properties Vice President for External Affairs Resty Ingal, Mandaluyong City Mayor Benhur Abalos and Mrs. Carmelita Aguilar Abalos, joined by city council and barangay officials of Mandaluyong, and officers of Gawad Kalinga and Century Properties.
Thirty families in Mandaluyong City will have a merrier Christmas this year as they look forward to the completion of their new homes with the help of listed property developer Century Properties Group Inc., Gawad Kalinga Community Development Foundation, Inc. and the City Government of Mandaluyong.
On December 6, 2014, the said institutions officially started the construction of the soon to rise GK-Century Properties Village at Hinahon Street, Barangka Drive, Mandaluyong City.
Century Properties donated Php5 million to GK to build thirty (30) housing units on a property donated by the Mandaluyong city government, for the benefit of the informal settler families of Hinahon.
The ceremony was led by Mandaluyong City Mayor Benhur Abalos, Mrs. Menchi Abalos, the Mandaluyong City Council, Century Properties officials, and the GK team.
In his speech, Mayor Abalos thanked Century Properties and GK for providing the beneficiaries a shelter they can now call their own. He also added that the project serves as an early Christmas gift to the families in Hinahon who have long been dreaming of a permanent home.
GK Executive Director Jose Luis Oquinena said that the housing project marks a fresh start for the community. “The GK-Century Properties Village will not only bring positive changes in the community but will also serve as a symbol of a new beginning for residents of Hinahon.”
After the ceremonies, Century Properties distributed early Noche Buena packages to the 30 families.
Gawad Kalinga (which means “to give care”) is a Philippine-based movement that seeks to alleviate poverty and restore the dignity of the poor by building holistic and sustainable housing communities. It formally started in 2003 and has since been implemented in 2,000 communities in the Philippines.
In order to cultivate a sense of ownership and appreciation for the housing among beneficiaries, GK makes sure that they provide a minimum of 1,000 man-hours in sweat equity before each unit is awarded to a family. Ed Crisostomo, Head GK Volunteer for Mandaluyong City and the GK-Century Properties Village construction said that sweat equity is important as it gives the beneficiaries a sense of pride and will encourage them to take good care of the homes that they worked so hard to build.
In addition to providing the funding for the housing construction, Century also pledged to work hand-in-hand with GK by sending employee volunteers to help on site starting January 2015. One Meralco Foundation had also sent volunteers to assist the beneficiary families in the construction.