One of Malaysia’s wealthiest men is helping to bring hope to thousands of Filipinos with a pledge to build 2,000 houses for the poor in partnership with Gawad Kalinga (GK) (‘give care’) Community Development Foundation.
Vincent Tan, founder of Berjaya Corporation Berhad, one of Malaysia’s largest conglomerates with activities in property investment, gambling, hotels & resorts, telecoms, and food, in addition to being the Malaysian franchise holder of Kenny Rogers Roasters, Starbucks, and Jollibean, made the pledge during the opening of the Berjaya Garden Restaurant and Culinary Centre (BGRCC) in Angat, Bulacan last month.
Considered by some as the ‘first farm village university in Asia’, the BGRCC is the primary food center of GK Enchanted Farm, catering to 200,000 partners, entrepreneurs, and students who visit the facility each year.
This is the second time the Malaysian tycoon has donated houses to poor Filipinos, pledging 3,000 houses at a cost of P300 million (about US$5.964 million*) following the devastating Typhoon Sendong and other natural calamities in 2012. Of this some 1,000 houses have been constructed to date.
Making the announcement Mr Tan said “we’re very pleased to help the Philippines by doing business here. Like what I always say, the rich people need the poor to support their businesses and I think the rich must give back as much as possible”.
Since 2012 12 Berjaya-GK villages that have been constructed for the benefit of poor Filipino families who live in areas prone to natural disaster, which the Asian Development Bank (ADB) estimates will cost the Philippines up to $299.3 billion by 2090.
Exactly when and where construction will take place is still being finalised a GK foundation spokesperson told AEC News Today in an email.
Feature photo: GK1WORLD
- Berjaya founder launches restaurant for poor, rural areas (The Sun Daily)
- Malaysian billionaire pledges 5,000 homes for poor Filipinos (Inquirer.net)
- Malaysian bilyonaryo wants to build 5,000 homes for poor Filipinos (Bilyonaryo)
* At current exchange rates