SM Foundation Inc. (SMFI) has consistently invested in critical areas such as health and education to support the country in attaining inclusive growth. A recent testament to this commitment is the transformation of the medical and dental clinic at the Quezon City Schools Division Office (QC-SDO) of the Department of Education (DepEd).
The refurbished clinic, nestled behind the Annex Building of SM North EDSA, features state-of-the-art equipment donated by SMFI.
The clinic will also serve as a platform for preventive healthcare, promoting healthy lifestyles and encouraging regular check-ups.
SM group representatives, SM Foundation Health and Medical Program Executive Director Connie Angeles, Mall Operations SAVP Jocelyn Clarino, and SM North EDSA Mall Manager Miguel Gaspi joined the turnover. This donation marks the beginning of the entry of the Foundation into the renovation of existing clinics in public elementary and secondary schools within the jurisdiction of the DepEd. In the past, the Foundation renovated community health centers and medical health units of the military (Navy, Air Force, Army).
Aside from the renovation and refurbishing, the Foundation is committed to do maintenance work in the upkeep of the facility. Regular visits are made by the Foundation or Mall officials located within the vicinity of the renovated Center.
Building a healthier future
During the turnover ceremony, Dr. Connie Gepanayao, Regional Medical Officer of DepEd National Capital Region, and SDO Superintendent Dr. Carleen Sedilla underscored the crucial role of health in enabling students to achieve their academic potential and aspirations.
With 158 schools and over 436,000 students in public schools, along with 16,000 teachers, Dr. Sedilla shed light on the critical need for school-based health services. Its value is further highlighted as the country recorded increased cases of hand, foot, and mouth diseases (HFMD) among young students, along with the prevalence of other illnesses.
With this development, the DepEd NCR is hopeful that they will become better equipped to provide extensive medical services to promote the positive impact of health on academic performance.
Meanwhile, Dr. Gepanayao said that the close relationship between the SM group and the SDO, facilitated by the proximity of their locations, has played a pivotal role in this collaboration.
“A healthy student is a happy student,” Dr. Gepanayao also said, optimistic that the clinic will also help make wellness an integral part of daily life and serve as a hub for community building, fostering connections among teachers, students, and their families, and strengthening the educational community as a whole.
Teachers and teaching staff monitor their blood pressure inside the new clinic.
(From left) SM North EDSA Mall Manager Miguel Gaspi, SM Supermalls Operations SAVP Jocelyn Clarino, SM Foundation Executive Director for Health and Medical Programs Connie Angeles, Schools Division Superintendent Dr. Carleen Sedilla, Regional Medical Officer of DepEd National Capital Region Dr. Connie Gepanayao, and School and Governance & Operations Division Chief Dr. Maria Teresa Namoro.