MANILA - With less than a year in office, Vice President Leni Robredo is hoping that her successor will continue her pet project Angat Buhay which assists poor Filipinos in Metro Manila and far-flung provinces.
“My hope is that that is the legacy I leave behind, and the Office of the Vice President, meaning to say I hope that whoever my successor will be, will continue with the program, and many other government agencies, offices will do a program such as this on their own,” Robredo said.
The Vice President mentioned her aspiration for the continuity of Angat Buhay in the virtual Spring Rain Global 5th Asian Philanthropic Development Conference.
Through Angat Buhay, private companies are linked with poor communities, with projects such as the provision of solar power in remote villages.
She was asked by forum moderator Fr. Francis Lucas on how she will manage to continue her projects after 2022.
Robredo said that even before she became a government official, she had been doing community work when she was a practicing lawyer with Saligan, an alternative law group.
The Vice President, however, stressed that local government units (LGUs) can also do their share in continuing Angat Buhay’s initiatives.
“We have been introducing the program to many LGUs already with the hope that beyond our term, the LGUs that we are partnering with right now will also continue the program,” Robredo said.
The Vice President also emphasized that the initiatives of the OVP and its partners can be easily continued by the next batch of leaders after 2022.
“Number 1, it is very easy to replicate. Number 2, they would not have to go through the many learnings that we went through, so the model is there already, especially for offices with budgets,” Robredo said.
Despite the Office of the Vice President having limited funds, Robredo still initiated such livelihood programs, even before the COVID-19 pandemic reached the country.
In her report to the nation, she outlined several projects she was able to accomplish during her term and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Among these were the Bayanihan e-Skwela, an online video series helping teachers and parents as the country's education system shifted to distance learning; sikap.ph, a jobs-matching platform for blue collar workers; and, iskaparate.com, which brought small businesses online.
Her office also opened a “vaccine express” for riders in Manila, Quezon City, and her hometown in Naga, in a bid to ramp up COVID-19 vaccinations.