MANILA -- Gaisano-led Metro Retail Stores Group Inc. has launched its first virtual bazaar amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with the aim of supporting social enterprises in the country.
The Virtual Metro Community Bazaar kicked off on July 6 and will run until July 31. The online event is supported by the Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Department of Health, and the Department of Interior and Local Government.
Shopping can be done at the Metro website and Facebook page. Available items include gourmet food products prepared by Caritas Margins, which provides skills and entrepreneurship training to marginalized sectors; moringa tea from GreenEarth Foundation; healthy and portion-controlled meals from MDF Diet2Go; Bukidnon's adlai rice from Kiboa Ridge Farms; snacks from SeaKid; and fresh produce from MAD Market and Blessed Earth Farm.
Sustainable lifestyle products from Coca Cola's Women Artisans of Tondo and local brands Bambuhay, Likha Lokal, and Wow Carmen Handicraft are also sold at the bazaar.
Other participants include the humanitarian organizations COVID Manila Project, Bahay ng Diyos Foundation, DSWD Haven for the Elderly, and Habitat for Humanity; Philippine Red Cross, which provides essential health assistance; St. Arnold Janssen Kalinga Center, a community-based program that helps the poor through bathing-clothing-feeding, educational skills, and employment-livelihood initiatives; dance and performing arts companies 8 Movements and Daloy Dance Company, education publisher REX Book Store, Inc. and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, which facilitates livelihood activities for Persons Deprived of Liberty or PDLs.
Metro's own Suisse Cottage is also opening its doors to teach baking-for-livelihood learning sessions.
"Family is at the core of everything we do at Metro, and the current health situation has shown us how strong this familial foundation is. We are grateful for our Metro family, because they ensure that our local communities receive support during these challenging times," Metro chairman and CEO Frank Gaisano said in a statement.
"Through the First Virtual Metro Community Bazaar, we invite our shoppers to take part in this continuing cycle of malasakit by supporting CSR brands that help uplift fellow Filipinos," he added.