First Gen’s slogan “We Care. We Dare” emphasizes our philosophy and key commitment to help develop and improve the quality of life of residents in our host communities and raise their level of self-reliance. “You take your job not only with respect to earning a living, but you also take your job with respect to being able to contribute to society,” said Francis Giles B. Puno, President and COO of First Gen.
Through our CSR activities, we forge links with the nearby communities. Surveys are initially conducted to determine the most pressing needs and how we may best serve, usually in partnership with the LGUs, non-profit organizations, and other local stakeholders. Our initiatives stem from our dialogues with members of the community and our monitoring of their progress.
Our use of natural gas, coupled with our commitment to increase renewable energy sources, stems from the value we place on our environment. Beyond being an investment for our continued operations, and an investment in the communities, which support and are supported by the Company, we are also looking at preserving, protecting, and, if possible, enhancing our natural environment for the benefit of future generations.
Verde Island Passage Conservation. First Gen remains an advocate of the Center of the Center (COC) Program, a marine biodiversity conservation program protecting the Verde Island Passage (VIP), said to be the most marine-diverse site in the world. To ensure VIP remains safe from illegal fishing and other destructive human activity, First Gen supports the community-based marine law enforcement volunteer group Bantay Dagat (Sea Patrol) in the 10 municipalities and one city of Batangas. The Company provided life and accident insurance to 324 Bantay Dagat members, and access to training for 63 new members. First Gen also donated a boat for the patrolling activities of their Tingloy chapter, as well as prizes for the Batangas Recognition Awards for Verde Island Passage’s Outstanding Marine Protected Areas (BRAVO). Finally, to further instill a sense of accomplishment and camaraderie, the Company also supported community-based activities such as the Verde Island Cookout and the VIP Swim Challenge.
Mt. Makiling Biodiversity Assessment. There’s a wealth of biodiversity in Mt. Makiling that needs to be taken stock of for conservation for future generations. Thus, First Gen assisted the Makiling Center for Mountain Ecosystems (MCME) in the assessment and monitoring of the biodiversity in Mt. Makiling. MCME is an academic institution committed to generating and strengthening scientific knowledge for the conservation and sustainable development of tropical mountain ecosystems, in partnership with mountain communities. MCME’s mission is to advance knowledge and promote sustainable development of Mt. Makiling and other tropical mountain ecosystems through integrated and participatory research demonstration programs. MCME manages the Mt. Makiling Forest Reserve, an ASEAN Heritage Park, straddling parts of Los Baños and Calamba City in the province of Laguna, and Sto. Tomas in the province of Batangas.
New Species Study. The diversity of flora that can be found in our plant sites never ceases to amaze. First Gen, in partnership with the UP Diliman Science Research Foundation, conducted dry season monitoring, phenology, and Rafflesia documentation at the Pantabangan-Carranglan Watershed and Forest Reserve in Nueva Ecija. In the first quarter of 2016, scientists from UP discovered that the watershed harbored the parasitic plant R. Consueloae. Considered the smallest species among the giant Rafflesia flowers, this plant has an average diameter of 9.7 centimeters.