For the first time since the pandemic in 2020, the Sugar Industry Foundation, Inc. (SIFI) has returned with a series of medical-dental missions to different sugar communities.
As part of SIFI’s Health Pillar, several medical missions were administered in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. SIFI VRO Health Officer Milen Joy Abad reports that a total of 3 medical-dental missions were rolled out this year in Visayas, in cooperation with the Hawaiian-Philippine Company (HPCo) and First Farmers Association, Inc. (FFA), and Asocicacion de Agricultores de La Carlota Y Pontevedra, Inc. (AALCPI)
The most recent medical-dental mission was held in partnership with AALCPI at Ayungon Elementary School, La Carlota City, Negros Occidental. A total of 253 sugar workers and dependents from AALCPI availed the medical consultation and free tooth extraction – with a variety of medicines provided free-of-charge. Four (4) medical doctors from La Carlota City and Bacolod City volunteered to help in the event, while 2 dentists offered their services.
In Luzon, SIFI was led by Project Officer Jhon Cena in collaboration with URC-SURE Balayan for the medical-dental mission. The event was held in Brgy. Pooc, Balayan, Batangas, gathering 277 beneficiaries that lined up for the consultation and dental services. Six (6) doctors volunteered in providing their services for the sugar workers and dependents.
Meanwhile in Mindanao, the most recent medical-dental missions were organized in Bukidnon in cooperation with Crystal Sugar Company, Inc., and in Davao del Sur with USPD-MPC and Davao Sugar Central Co. (DASUCECO). A total of 734 sugar workers benefitted both events.
SIFI Mindanao Project Officers Joseph Bryan Sermonia and Emmanuel Capul led the conduct of the missions with Associated Bukidnon Sugarcane Farmers, Inc. (ABSFI) and Busco Sugar Milling Company, Inc. (BSMCI) in Bukidnon. A combined total of 425 sugar workers and dependents benefited from the services.
With excellent doctors from different fields, the events were beneficial to the sugar communities that have been bereft of medical attention due to the lingering pandemic.