CAMP AGUINALDO, QUEZON CITY – The Armed Forces of the Philippines and Ayala Group of Companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to strengthen a long-standing partnership and bolster support to soldiers through the Saludo Sa Serbisyo program on Thursday, July 29.
AFP Chief of Staff General Cirilito Sobejana signed the MOU on behalf of the AFP, while Ayala Corporation President & CEO Fernando Zobel de Ayala represented the Ayala Group.
“The Saludo Sa Serbisyo program developed by the Ayala Corporation will be in full swing until 2026 and is a program that will absolutely aid in boosting the morale and in improving the lives of the men and women of the Armed Forces,” said General Sobejana.
Saludo Sa Serbisyo is a needs-based program that gives uniformed personnel expanded access to the group’s products and services, enabling them to pick the best support they need in every key milestone of their lives.
“The AFP and Ayala go a long way back. In 1939, Col. Joseph McMicking, a great pilot and our great grandfather, awarded the first McMicking Wings to the then Second Lieutenant Renato L. Barretto, a pilot cadet at the Philippine Air Force Flying School,” Zobel said.
“Over the years and amidst several leadership transitions, our partnership strengthened; our friendship flourished. Both Ayala and AFP have demonstrated how impactful our actions can be— when we work in unity,” he added.
The program provides offers on housing and vehicles, and it hosts a venue for financial education and livelihood training as well as health and wellness caravans. It also hopes to provide employment opportunities in various business units across the Ayala Group to AFP retirees and their qualified dependents.
Earlier on the same day, a Ribbon Cutting was conducted to formally open the AFP-Ayala Corporation Caravan at the GHQ Canopy. It was attended by the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel, J1 Major General Adriano S Perez Jr.; and General Emmanuel T Bautista (Ret), former AFP chief of staff and now a consultant at Ayala Corporation.
The caravan featured Housing Assistance from Ayala Land and Health and Wellness Caravan courtesy of AC Health – Healthway, Generika, and MDC Medical Team. Several financial and investment opportunities were also offered by BPI, while AC Motors offered preferred rates on vehicles under the company’s umbrella of brands: Honda, Kia, Isuzu, Volkswagen, Maxus, and KTM.
Apart from “Saludo Sa Serbisyo,” Ayala Group also expresses its support to servicemen through its strong support to Hero Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides educational assistance to children of Filipino soldiers killed in action or totally incapacitated while in the line of duty.
Ayala Corporation and Ayala Land each give a donation of P2.5 million yearly. The educational stipend from the foundation helps orphaned students pay for school-related expenses. With the help of the private sector, Hero Foundation has supported and served a total of 2,702 orphan scholars since 1988.
The group also holds the annual Ayala Young Leaders Congress, where top youth and student leaders from across various sectors, religions, and provinces of the Philippines join a series of dialogues with business leaders and government officials. A total of 89 AYLC alumni come from the Philippine Military Academy and currently serve in different branches of service of the AFP.
“As we continue our partnership moving forward, we remain committed to further ramp up our projects with the AFP and strengthen the bonds of friendship that we have nurtured over the years. We certainly look forward to having more joint initiatives with you in the near future,” Zobel noted.
General Sobejana expressed his gratitude to the Ayala Corporation for their benevolence and generosity as both parties strive to provide cohesive, needs-based, and sustainable program for the troops and their dependents.
“Thank you for not forgetting our soldiers, who work tirelessly and put their lives on the line to protect the land and serve the Filipino people. You all have our utmost respect and admiration,” the AFP Chief said.