BPI Sinag evolves to achieve more inclusive and sustainable growth

Friday, May 20, 2022

BPI Foundation remains committed to be at the forefront of social entrepreneurship in the country through its Sinag program.

BPI Foundation, the social development arm of the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), officially launched the 8th iteration of its flagship program, BPI Sinag, which champions the social enterprise (SE) sector in the country. 

With this year’s theme: BPI Sinag Evolution, the program aims to elevate its impact and achieve inclusive and sustainable growth by implementing for the first time, a multi-stakeholder approach, highlighting three vital pillars: the social entrepreneurs, the educators, and the intervenors or sub-sectors. BPI Foundation has committed Php3 million worth of cash grants for these pillars this year.

BPI Sinag Evolution is also aligned with the National Social Enterprise Development Roadmap, one of the accomplishments of Sinag Spark last year, translating the roadmap strategies into viable programs. 

Introduced in 2015, the BPI Sinag program was initially conceived as a business challenge for social enterprises (SEs). It has now evolved into a growing ecosystem that continues to bring together not just the country’s visionary entrepreneurs, but also mentors, investors, and other stakeholders with a collective goal of inclusive and sustainable growth through social entrepreneurship. 

Over the years, the program has supported 238 SEs nationwide and awarded over Php20 million cash grants to help them strengthen their enterprises, widen their reach, and further uplift the lives of their communities.

Evolution best represents the enhancements in our Sinag program over time to better address the needs of the broader SE ecosystem,” said BPI Foundation Executive Director Owen Cammayo. “Doing well by doing good as an economic and social imperative is more relevant now more than ever. This is the perfect time to increase our collective efforts to become more inclusive, responsible, and sustainable when doing business. This is the essence why we strongly support social enterprises.”

Delighted to continue its long-time partnership with BPI Foundation in empowering social enterprises, Bayan Academy President and Chairman Prof. Francisco “Jay” Bernardo said, “BPI Foundation together with Bayan Academy and other program partners will contribute and make available suitable resources to assist social enterprises in their journey to evolve. The BPI Sinag Evolution program fully supports the promotion of an enabling environment so social enterprises cannot just merely survive, and it doesn’t stop at thriving, but also allowing them to evolve.” 

During the virtual launch, four Sinag alumni, JT Solis of Mayani, Catherine Diquit of Likhang Maragondon, Cecille Virtucio of Batangas Egg Producers Cooperation, and Lorielinda Bella Rago-Marte of Tagolwanen Women Weavers Association also talked about their experiences on how the program helped grow their social enterprises. “Kami ay maliit na social enterprise lamang and we are only months-old noong sumali kami dito. Because of BPI Sinag, we had a better understanding kung ano ba ang social enterprise. We met so many inspiring people. Nagkaroon kami ng better connections and network. The funding that we got from BPI Sinag really help us kasi ngayon nakapagpagawa na kami ng manufacturing hub,” said Ms. Catherine Diquit of Likhang Maragondon.

Together with its main implementing partner, Bayan Academy, BPI Foundation will continue its partnerships with BPI’s microfinance arm, BPI BanKo, together with Ayala Land, Start Up Village, and Villgro Philippines. As part of the program’s evolution, the foundation also sealed a collaboration with Entrego to boost the market access of SEs by providing reliable logistic solutions for the safe and timely delivery of their products.

Business challenge for social enterprises

The “Sinag Evolution” business challenge will open its doors again to social enterprises. Of 60 SEs who will qualify for the bootcamps and mentoring sessions, the Top 25 will be shortlisted for the selection of the Top 10, who will receive as much as Php300,000 cash grant.
Aside from the cash grants, BPI Foundation will provide Sinag SEs with an MBA-like experience through virtual mentoring sessions, which will include sessions on business strategy and planning, marketing, operations, finance, organization & HR development, and social innovation, among others. Sinag SEs will also benefit from market access through the Sinag Sari-Sari Store in Ayala malls nationwide through its partnership with Alagang Ayala Land.

The business challenge is open to social entrepreneurs who are 18 years old and above leading a registered social enterprise that has been operating for at least six months. The application period will run until June 30, 2022. 

New offerings for the academe and sub-sectors

With the multi-stakeholder approach, the “Sinag Evolution” will also give opportunities to the members of the academe and the support intervenors of SEs through a customized management program and competition.

Aiming to encourage academic institutions to be at the active forefront of social entrepreneurship, BPI Foundation offers the BPI Sinag Social Entrepreneurship and Management Course for Educators. The course, which will focus on effective methodologies in teaching social entrepreneurship management, is open to the members of the academe, including school heads, administrators, and lead teachers who specialize in general entrepreneurship and business management. 

The deadline for applications is on June 10, 2022, while the training will be from June 13 to 17. The participating educators will then submit their proposals and present them to an esteemed panel of judges. Five educators with the best proposals will win a cash grant of Php100,000 each.

For the SE Intervenors and Subs-sectors, BPI Foundation aims to collaborate with various organizations, including corporate foundations, NGOs, civil society organizations, and other government agencies, in promulgating social entrepreneurship as part of their corporate social responsibility programs.

The participants will be given the chance to learn about social entrepreneurship management and frameworks that may be used as interventions in the community that they support. In addition, they will be asked to present proposals to integrate social entrepreneurship in their existing programs to achieve better social impact in the communities they serve. 

Interested participants may register until August 12, 2022, while the five-day bootcamp will be held from August 22 to 26. Five participants with the most viable proposals will win a cash grant of Php100,000 each.

To know more about Sinag Evolution, visit https://www.bpifoundation.org/page/bpi-sinag and follow BPI Foundation on Facebook and Instagram. 

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