Chairman's Message

I would like to express my thanks to our dedicated Board of Trustees, staff, volunteers and members of Mother Earth Foundation for our many successes these past years. These have enabled us to be recognized as a leader in grassroots ecological solid waste management. We reminisce with nostalgia the learning curves that we had to tackle during our infant years and we can proudly say that we have learned greatly from experiences, and in working with other NGO groups, communities, the academe, civil society and local government units.

Our main thrust is still community organizing through our tried and tested seminar/workshops on ecological waste management that has our important Inner Ecology module, and with emphasis on Zero Waste as a goal. We have developed partnerships with different entities like The Manila Water, Rotary International, USAID-Eco Asia, Pinatubo Hazard Urgent Mitigation Project (PHUMP), the National Movement of Young Legislators and Local Government Units, particularly, Puerto Princesa City, Batangas City, and most recently, San Fernando City, and Barangay Fort Bonifacio. We now hold the license in the Philippines for the world renowned environmental educations programs – Project Water Education for Teachers and Project Learning Tree.

MEF is the head of the Task Force Plastic of the EcoWaste Coalition and I am glad to report that the MEF Board of Trustees and our staff “walk our talk” in our no-to-plastic campaign. We bring our reusable bags with us all the time, we use bayong and reusable bags and containers in the wet markets and supermarkets, we don’t use straw in any drinks, we use reusable cups and drinking glasses, and nito plates lined with banana leaves or washable plates during our meetings and events.

We have worked with the staff of Senator Pia Cayetano, the General Services Department and the Office of External Affairs in the Senate on the waste management of the Senate. The Senate staff and personnel are now using reusable plastic containers instead of plastic bags for their food for lunch and snacks. The Senate Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) has been operational for about a year and Senator Pia has reported that the Senate has a 50% waste diversion after the establishment of their MRF. A plastic bag and styrofor free Senate and a no-segregation, no collection policy were the main action plans during the seminar/workshop conducted by MEF and will be strictly implemented and monitored starting May 2012. Water dispensers were installed in the Senate session room through the efforts of Senator Pia Cayetano to decrease the plastic bottled water waste during the impeachment hearings.

We worked with the PHUMP (Pinatubo Hazard Urgent Mitigation Project) in the Pampanga area to organize the communities in the pinpointed barangays for their ecological solid waste management programs. This was sponsored by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Department of Public Works and Highways. As an offshoot of this project, we entered into a partnership with San Fernando City, as I have mentioned earlier, to work on the Ecological Solid Waste Management (ESWM) of their 35 barangays.  We got the assurance of the Governor of Pampanga, Gov. Lilia Pineda that they will pursue ecological waste management and will not use waste-to-energy technologies and landfilling in their waste program. Not to be outdone, Angeles City revived their citywide zero waste program with support from Mother Earth Foundation.

We will start our eight-month project with the Barangay Fort in May.

We have established the Zero Waste Pilipinas with the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA), Health Care Without Harm, EcoWaste Coalition, and Cavite Green Coalition, as founding members.

We have also established the Zero Waste Academy to provide trainings on zero waste and its various aspects to the different sectors of society. This academy is the first in Southeast Asia.

We look forward to more active years of environmental work, together with our board of trustees who not only provide their time and talent but their personal resources as well; our dedicated staff and volunteers; and our supportive members, all “for love of Mother Earth”.