Insular Life supports the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals:

When 23-year-old Roslyn Vea Domingo Damasco became one of the two topnotchers in the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) in 2021, she thought it was “God’s perfect timing.”

Never mind that it took almost two years for the examination to happen after being postponed three times due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown restrictions.

“At the time, I didn’t have a stable job due to the community quarantine and since I still didn’t have a license to teach. I used the time to focus on reviewing, but it was difficult as I had to adjust to an online review program, and we didn’t have a stable internet connection. Not having a direct contact with my lecturers for questions and clarifications also stalled my learning,” she lamented.

Still, Roslyn persevered — enrolling in two review centers, attending all the live virtual sessions, and reading all her reviewers at least 10 times. So, when “God’s perfect timing” came, she was ready. Not only did she rank number one out of over 17,000 LET examinees, but she also graduated as a Magna Cum Laude at the University of the Philippines in Diliman where she took up Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education.

“If something is meant to be yours, it will be yours. No pandemic, no failures nor rejections can snatch that from you. You just have to trust that He will give it to you in time,” said Rosyln, who said her life’s missions are to share God’s word, to inspire, and to touch lives.

Learning Against the Odds

Touching lives is also what brought Insular Foundation, Inc. into Rosyln’s life. Under its Gold Eagle Scholarship Program, she received free tuition and other fees, book allowance, transportation allowance, board and lodging, and a monthly stipend.

The program, which supports the college education of future teachers, had 143 scholars for school year (SY) 2021-2022, composed of 108 enrolled in BS Education, BS Mathematics, and BS Statistics courses in UP Diliman; five partner universities in the provinces; 19 dependent scholars enrolled in various universities, and 16 incoming UP Diliman freshmen scholars.

Seven Gold Eagle scholars and one under the Foundation’s College Scholarship for Employee Dependents graduated from college during SY 2020-2021. These include Jim Mendiola, a scholar from UP Diliman who graduated Cum Laude, who received a cash award of Php5,000.

The scholarship program is just one of the ways The Foundation, InLife’s 51-year-old corporate social responsibility arm, is helping the country meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal No. 4, which is to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all. Its other education programs are the following:

  • Laptops for Scholars in Provincial Schools: Twenty-five second-hand laptops, were donated by the Foundation to 25 scholars who are in 2nd- to 4th-year college in the provinces to support their blended learning since the pandemic started. The Foundation refurbished the laptops with new storage device and Single State Device (SSD). before shipping the laptops to the provinces.

  • Partnerships:

    • On its third year, The Foundation’s partnership with Xepto Digital Education continued to provide a cloud-based Learning Management System to 771 grades 10-12 learners and 28 educators of Muntinlupa Science High School. For SY 2020-2021, more than 15,000 modules were created by teachers and co-created by students.

    • The Foundation also sustained its support for the Department of Education’s (DepEd) 2021 Brigada Eskwela program through cash and in-kind educational assistance of Php20,000 each to 17 schools nationwide. The donation was mostly used to purchase printing equipment and supplies to aid the schools during the current learning setup. In addition, a total of 11,602 titles of storybooks were also donated to support the Brigada Pagbasa Program of DepEd to help students lagging in reading and comprehension skills.

    • Four Alternative Learning System (ALS) Centers have been established since 2019 through The Foundation’s partnership with Cebuana Lhuillier Foundation. These are in Pedro Guevarra Elementary School (137 learners), Muntinlupa City Jail (290 learners), and the Correctional Institute for Women (174 female learners). In 2021, Manolo Fortich Central Elementary School Bukidnon was added to the ALS centers.

    • Through Knowledge Channel Foundation, an NGO specializing in creating DepEd-approved media materials for K-12 students, the Foundation sponsored the training for 130 teachers, school heads and ICT personnel of 10 public schools in Muntinlupa. This aims to provide them with skills in the new normal. The Foundation invested Php225,000 for teacher’s capacity building. All participating schools received a Knowledge Channel Portable Media Library of more than 1,500 video lessons, e-learning modules, session guides and other learning resources after the training.

  • Adopt-A-Scholar Program:

    • The Foundation extended assistance to 424 scholars in four elementary public schools (Itaas Elementary School, Alabang Elementary School and Bayanan Elementary School in Muntinlupa, and Balili Elementary School in La Trinidad, Benguet) for the blended learning mode of education. The assistance came in the form of school supplies, hygiene kits, pre-paid card load, and vitamins. The program gained a high retention rate of 96.5%. A total of 114 of InLife employees continued their commitment by donating Php1,100 per scholar. Amounts pooled were used to purchase school supplies and hygiene kits for the Muntinlupa schools.

  • The Foundation donated Php50,000 to the Adopt-A-Scholar Program of the University of Santo Tomas College of Commerce Alumni Foundation, Inc (COCAFI). The scholarship fund is intended to sustain the schooling of 3rd- and 4th-year students enrolled in business courses at UST. The scholarship program helps address the financial challenges of parents whose children may not be able to continue their studies due to the pandemic.

Building the Nation

As part of the Foundation’s contributions to nation building, it also supports various programs and initiatives related to disaster response, COVID-19-related assistance, women empowerment, and environmental protection.

Disaster Response: With the onslaught of Super Typhoon Odette in 2021, the Foundation mobilized its resources to reach out to affected InLifers, agents, and communities.

  • Fundraiser: The Foundation, together with the HR Good Squad, ran a fundraising drive from December 20 to 31, 2021 and raised a total donation of Php1,004,721.26 from employees, agents, and policyholders. The amount was matched by the Foundation, 1:1, which enabled the Foundation to donate a total of Php2,009,442.52.

  • Donations through Partner Organizations: In addition, the Foundation also donated a total of Php2,688,000 for relief and rehabilitation assistance through its various partner organizations: the League of Corporate Foundations, Philippines Association of Social Workers, Palawan and Negros Oriental Chapter, NORFIL Philippines Foundation, Philippine Relief Disaster and Development Foundation, InLife Young Shero Karen Salutan, and Cebu InLife agent Ms. Dindin Exaltacion.

  • Assistance for Families of InLife Employees and Agents: Cash assistance were also given to InLife employees and agents for the repair of their typhoon-damaged houses. The InLife Cebu office also received 300 bottles of 10 liters of mineral water through the Foundation’s partnership with the Philippine Air Force.

COVID-19 Assistance: On the second year of the global pandemic, the Foundation continued its support to medical frontliners, hospitals, and other stakeholders to help address the lingering impact of COVID-19.

  • Health frontliners in 35 public hospitals received in-kind donations of PPEs and vitamins amounting to Php799,223.

  • Patients affected by the fire incident on May 16, 2021 at the Philippine General Hospital were given Php50,000 cash assistance and another Php50,000 was extended to Hospicio De San Jose for the food supply of children and elderly in lockdown. The Foundation also co-sponsored the slabbing works or flooring of the Emergency Quarantine Facility at Ospital ng Muntinlupa, together with the Rotary Club of Makati.

  • Through an internal fundraising campaign, 358 InLife external service personnel nationwide received food packs, safety equipment, hygiene supplies, vitamins, and Php500 cash each. InLife employees donated a total of P801,000, including 100% Foundation fund matching.

  • Fundraiser: The Foundation, together with the HR Good Squad, ran a fundraising drive from December 20 to 31, 2021 and raised a total donation of Php1,004,721.26 from employees, agents, and policyholders. The amount was matched by the Foundation, 1:1, which enabled the Foundation to donate a total of Php2,009,442.52.

Women Inclusion and Empowerment: In line with InLife’s advocacy to address gender gap and promote economic inclusion, the following projects were initiated by the Foundation in 2021:

  • In partnership with Connected Women, the Foundation invested Php500,000 to train 20 women in the low-income communities of Mabalacat, Pampanga as data annotators or data labelers under the Elevate AIDA Project. It also partnered with the Population and Gender and Development Office of the local government of Mabalacat for a five-day training and 10-day on-the-job training on data labeling or annotation of 20 women from low-income communities. Sixty-percent out of the trained beneficiaries are now employed.

  • Data Science Training, in partnership with For the Women Foundation, was given to 21 scholars to pursue a data science profession. Eighteen scholars have completed the program while two were immediately hired by Insular Health Care.

Employee Volunteerism: The work of The Foundation would not have been possible without the amazing support it receives from InLifers who volunteer their time, talent, and treasure to magnify InLife’s contributions to society over the years. In 2021, these initiatives were undertaken by employee volunteers:

  • Through “Tutor Kita,” the Foundation was able to train 40 InLife employee volunteers to equip them with tutoring skills which they can use in actual online tutoring sessions. The first phase of the online volunteering program was held in 2021. The second phase, involving actual one-hour, twice-a-week tutoring sessions of grade 4 Adopt-A-Scholar Program scholars in Bayanan Elementary School, will take place in February 2022. “Tutor Kita” was done in partnership with AHA, an NGO specializing in community-based learning, and in collaboration with the HR Good Squad to engage employees.

  • Forty-five K-12 schoolchildren who are Foundation beneficiaries in Sitio Paulton, Cebu received school supplies while 45 family beneficiaries affected by Super Typhoon Odette in Cebu received relief and Christmas packs from the Foundation.

Environmental Sustainability: The Foundation also supports the environmental causes of partner-organizations as part of its environmental stewardship.

  • Through the Kawayanihan Project in Lubao, Pampanga, 240 saplings of bamboo were planted, completing the Foundation’s three-year commitment of 720 bamboo saplings planted on 1.8 hectares of land along the riverside of Sta Catalina in Lubao, Pampanga. The training of bamboo workers will be conducted on the 3rd and last year of the partnership.

  • The Foundation sustained its support to the Philippine Eagle through its corporate membership of Php100,000 in the Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF). No less than InLife President and Insular Foundation Vice Chairperson Mr. Raoul Littaua serves as the Foundation’s representative to the PEF.

Insular Foundation expects to remain relevant, especially in the post-pandemic new normal as it continues to fulfill InLife’s vision of a brighter, emerging future for all Filipinos.