In the lead up to the opening of classes, MSD in the Philippines collaborated with Kythe Foundation to help pediatric patients get ready for another year of learning, with “MSD Gives Back 2 School.”

Employees of MSD in the Philippines donated learning and wellness kits to 100 pediatric cancer and chronically ill patients in Metro Manila. Through the volunteer program MSD Gives Back, they contributed their time, thought, and care-filled efforts in purchasing and assembling the school kits, and visiting the pediatric wards of Quirino Memorial Medical Center (QMMC) and the Philippine Orthopedic Center (POC) to engage with and lift the spirits of the Kythe kids.

MSD employees led by Andreas Riedel, President and Managing Director, turn over school kits to Kythe Foundation represented by Janice Cuevas, Partner Relations Manager, and Jem Benzon, Volunteer Program Officer.

Boosting the spirit of brave kids

“We, at Kythe Foundation, are deeply grateful for the continuous partnership with MSD for the past years. The vibrant energies and support of the MSD volunteers are seen and felt during activities like this. We are sincerely grateful for the time, effort, and donations that each of you have contributed to ensure that the children patients are well-equipped to learn and grow even when confined in the hospital. These kits give them a chance to explore and develop their skills in writing and drawing, perhaps creating poetry or songs too. Through this, they reminded that their illness and hospitalization cannot hinder their capacity to continue learning, and that they are not alone in their battle against cancer and other chronic illnesses.” – Janice Cuevas, Kythe’s Partner Relations Manager, on the relevance of such interaction for children with cancer.

MSD volunteers made sure to encourage the kids’ love of learning during the delivery of the school kits, which contained notebooks and pens, as well as art materials, and wellness kits. The hospital visit ended on a fun-filled note, as volunteers interacted with the kids and their guardians, exchanging notes on their favorite school activities, and wishing them a great school year ahead.

MSD employees hand-delivered school kits for the pediatric cancer patients at the Philippine Orthopedic Center (POC) together with Jem Benzon, Kythe Volunteer Program Officer, Charm Mercado, Kythe Child Life Coordinator for POC, and Fely Zafranco, RSW – POC OIC, Medical Social Work Service

Patients first

MSD champions volunteerism by encouraging employees to find meaningful ways to give back to the community. Through the volunteerism and skills share program, MSD Gives Back, employees participate in programs that promote a healthier society, advance education, foster the arts, address the welfare of animals, and preserve the environment.

“At MSD, we aim to help build healthier communities by putting patients first in everything we do. Through MSD Gives Back, our employees are empowered to make an impact through meaningful volunteerism opportunities, such as our collaboration with Kythe Foundation, for the benefit of children with cancer and other chronic illnesses.”

The company has been a long-time supporter of Kythe Foundation, a non-stock, non-profit organization dedicated to the health and well-being of children with chronic illness, such as cancer. In recognition of the company’s contributions, in 2022, Kythe Foundation named MSD Philippines as Corporate Volunteer Group of the Year.

Sharing a human moment that serves as a balm to the soul contributes to the healing process. This is where company policies on volunteerism and individual acts of kindness can make a difference, by encouraging and empowering children and their families to fight cancer and letting them know that they are not alone in their journey.