MANILA-- The Japanese embassy in Manila on Friday has signed five new grassroots projects worth PHP41.78 million, which are focused on improving education, health, and agriculture across the country.
The projects, under Japan's Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects (GGP), will be implemented by the GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc. and the municipalities of Matanog in Maguindanao, Dingalan in Aurora, Balete in Batangas, and Calintaan in Occidental Mindoro.
"Once completed, I believe the long-term impact of these projects we signed will far outweigh the resources we have devoted to these initiatives," Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koji Haneda in a speech during the signing ceremony.
The envoy sees more households gaining access to better health services with the upgraded rural health unit and the provision of birthing equipment for Dingalan and Balete.
The PHP5.8 million-worth upgrade of the municipal health center in Dingalan is expected to provide comprehensive medical services to 5,000 patients, including 650 pregnant women annually.
Meanwhile, the grant in Balete - amounting to PHP5.2 million - is seen to improve the municipality's rural health unit to accommodate more patients including 1,400 patients needing the fully-automated chemistry analyzer.
Haneda said he also looks forward to seeing more children study in a conducive learning environment with the classrooms to be built in Matanog and Marawi City.
In Matanog, the Japanese government is allocating a PHP9 million grant with doubled amount in Marawi or about PHP18 million to be implemented by the GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
The last grant worth PHP3.9 million is on the procurement of post-harvest equipment and facility for Calintaan farmers.
Japan established the GGP as a grant facility promoting human security at the community level.
To date, Tokyo have already funded a total of 538 projects worth USD32 million in education, health, agriculture, social welfare and capacity building in the Philippines.
"Over the years, GGP continues to be carried out with the goal of helping those in the marginal and vulnerable sector improve their conditions and achieve better opportunities for growth" Haneda said.
"It is our goal to continuously make a difference in the lives of many Filipinos, one community at a time," he added. (PNA)