Wednesday, July 06, 2011

IBM Phils adopts 800 trees in La Mesa Watershed

IBM Phils adopts 800 trees in La Mesa Watershed
July 6, 2011

The La Mesa Watershed, said to be the last remaining forest in Metro Manila, has found a partner in IBM Philippines.

Candy Soto, IBM Philippines Delivery Leader (extreme left) and other IBM officials get ready to plant trees for the Save the La Mesa Watershed Project. Photo courtesy of IBM Philippines

The company adopted 800 trees on July 2 to support the 2nd phase of the Save the La Mesa Watershed Project of Bantay Kalikasan, the environmental arm of ABS-CBN Foundation.

IBM employees, retirees and business partners numbering in the thousands joined an environmental awareness briefing and an eco-'Amazing Race' activity that day.

They were led by IBM Country General Manager James Velasquez. Gina Lopez, president of ABS-CBN Foundation, was the guest speaker.

The La Mesa Watershed houses the reservoir supplying the water needs of Filipinos in Metro Manila. Its rehabilitation and protection programs are spearheaded by Bantay Kalikasan in two phases: reforestation (phase 1), and protection and maintenance of improvements in the past 7 years (phase 2).

In a statement, IBM Philippines said it "supports Bantay Kalikasan in its commitment to look after the environment by rehabilitating and protecting one of the country’s most critical watersheds."

The event last Saturday was part of the company's Celebration of Service program for its employees, retirees and business partners to celebrate IBM's centennial activities. Under the program, IBMers can volunteer their time and expertise to help address civic challenges and societal needs.

A recent project IBMers participated in under this program is the Mangrove Reforestation Project in Olango Island, done in cooperation with the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) Visayas Regional Office.

The company reported that since January 2001, IBMers, retirees and their families have already volunteered more than 2.5 million hours of service to communities worldwide.