Social Responsibility

Empowering Communities

“We shall, through our Social Development Management Program, make available to our host communities, programs for livelihood, health and education, provide them with employment and business opportunities, as well as opportunities to acquire and develop valuable skills that will empower them to be productive participants in nation building.”

— Excerpt from The Baguio Declaration

Beyond compliance, NAC adheres to Responsible Mining as a strong commitment to its stakeholders.

The Company accomplishes its social programs through the Social Development Management Program (SDMP) which are mandatory social expenditures and through its own corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives.

SDMP and CSR programs address the real needs of the communities and are designed to have long-term positive impact for their future. The Company continues to strengthen its partnerships and collaboration with stakeholders because experience has shown that the participatory approach to program selection has effectively and consistently produced better results.

A. Promoting Inclusive Development for Indigenous Peoples

NAC continues to strengthen its relationship with IP communities, fully recognizing the Indigenous Peoples rights to their Ancestral Domains.

TMC operates in an Ancestral Domain area while RTN operates in an area where IPs, though without an ancestral domain, hold a strong presence. Both RTN and TMC provide annual royalty payments, housing and other benefits to the IP communities.

In 2018, RTN, together with Coral Bay Nickel Corporation (CNBC) helped create new agricultural community associations to prepare the people for the eventual closure of mining activities in their areas. These community-based associations composed mostly of indigent individuals include the Iwahig Indigenous People Farmers Association, Ocayan IP’s Farmers Association, Sandoval IP’s and Women’s Farmers Association, and the Sandoval IP’s Hog Raising Association. The initiative aims to bring a stable source of livelihood and job opportunities for community members.

B. Improving Education Facilities for the Community

Recognizing the importance of education in the quest for economic freedom, NAC has always supported education-related programs and school activities. The Company also supports similar activities in neighboring areas.

In 2018, TMC, together with the Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation (THPAL), helped fund the construction of a two-storey school building for the Taganito National High School (THNS) in Claver, Surigao del Norte. The building houses 32 classrooms and benefits over 1,000 students from at least four barangays. The project is a prime example of high-impact community projects that is among the priority programs of NAC.

Meanwhile, RTN funded the construction of two Student Activity Centers for the College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology (CEAT) of the Palawan State University. It was a project proposed by the student councils of CEAT primarily to respond to the needs of those students who spend most of their day in school.

For its part, CMC has been accommodating K-12 students from nearby schools such as the Del Pilar National High School, also offering 10-day On-the-Job (OJT) Training and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) accredited short courses on Electrical Installation and Maintenance. CMC also offers the students state-of-the-art equipment where they can train while a pool of talented CMC technical personnel provides the practical learning.

For the Senior High School students of Valencia National High School (VNHS), CMC offers work immersion for their General Academic Strand, such as Automotive Servicing course. A total of 17 K-12 students were able to finish the course and were included in the graduation of the first batch of Senior High graduates of VNHS. The high school graduates interested to continue on to the tertiary level were encouraged to apply for CMC’s Scholarship Program.

C. Strengthening Livelihood Programs

NAC believes that the entrepreneurial spirit of the community can help uplift the economic status of the people. That is the reason the Company focuses on strengthening livelihood programs and in educating the people on financial stability and freedom.

Among the important projects undertaken this year is RTN and CBNC’s donation of over PHP 1 million to fisherfolk of Bataraza, Palawan. The fund was for the purchase of seven fishing boats and five 6-meter wide fishing nets, and for the construction of cottages, and hatchery and culture facilities for the Igang-Igang Fisher Folks Association (IFFA) and well as for their Sea Cucumber production project.

RTN also increased its support for the coffee farming program of the Rocky Mountain Arabica Coffee Company through a 200-hectare coffee plantation where coffee plants that produce Liberica beans locally known as “kapeng Barako” are produced. To further strengthen the program, RTN partnered with the Palawan Cooperative Union (PCU) and the Cooperative Development Aide Authority (CDAA) in providing trainings to coffee growers and help them establish successful cooperatives.

Meanwhile, HMC’s Manicani Nickel Project launched the Agar-Agar Farming livelihood program in Guiuan, Eastern Samar. Agar-Agar is a type of seaweed that is in high demand in both local and international markets. The beneficiaries of the program are the fisher folk families who now have an alternative source of income.

TMC on the other hand, awarded a fish cage project to “Gagmay’ng Mananagat sa Wangke (GAMAWA), a people’s organization of fisher folks. The project is a 450 square meter area with six cottages and a multi-purpose area, with three chambers housing some 30,000 bangus (milkfish) fingerlings and with an adjacent floating fish cage containing 16,000 danggit fingerlings.

CMC’s turnover of 16,000 bangus fingerlings to the Bayanihan Nickel Fisherfolk Association, marked the completion of the Bangus Culture Project for the community which included the provision of fishnet weaving and the installation of bamboo fish case and floater. The project is at Sitio Buloc-Buloc, Brgy. Bayanihan, Libjo town. Again, this entrepreneurial program is seen to cushion the impact of lean fishing months on fisher folks and their families.

D. Improving Health in the Community

NAC has medical facilities in each of its mine sites because maintaining a strong and healthy community is one of the goals of the Company. NAC also conducts an annual medical-surgical mission that benefit hundreds of patients every year.

NAC, through its subsidiaries – TMC, CMC and HMC – and with THPAL, conducted its 7th annual medical- surgical mission at the Surigao del Norte Provincial Hospital, from February 3-5, 2018.

The annual medical-surgical mission is part of the CSR of NAC, which guarantees that special medical attention is provided to the residents of its mining communities. Each operation is estimated to cost at least PHP 50 thousand which most patients cannot afford on their own.

A team of medical experts including visiting volunteer- surgeons and nurses from California, USA, as well as volunteers from Manila and Surigao, convened at the provincial hospital in the town of Bad-as Surigao del Norte, on the three days of the mission and conducted over 133 major operations and 109 minor operations, free of all charges.

The missions generated stories of hope from the community who felt the care and compassion of the Company for people who are in need. There was also an outpouring of gratitude for the opportunity to finally solve their health problems, something which they would have not done on their own due to lack of financial resources.

Also, RTN, in partnership with CBNC, conducted another medical mission to provide free cleft and lip palate surgery at the Aborlan Medicare Hospital under Operation Smile Philippines (OpSmile). This was a partnership since 2016 which will continue to grow stronger as the team is set to conduct another round of missions in 2019 to fulfill their promise to make Palawan cleft free.