April 3, 2020—Small donations amounting to PhP 1.5 million poured into the Bayanihan Musikahan fund-raiser in 1 hour during the live concert-from-house of music superstar Lea Salonga last night.
She began and ended her hour with composition by the principal organizer of the project, Ryan Cayabyab, National Artist for Music. Emphasizing citizen action in the face of a pandemic, Salonga encapsulated an emerging dynamic of citizens helping citizens through small contributions and exercise of talent.
The unusual spike adds this amount to the total of PhP 22,373,178.00 already raised by April 2, 2020. Ms. Salonga announced this figure during her concert, while triggering a outpouring of support from Filipinos on lock-down, watching from their homes in the Philippines and overseas.
The increased fund-raising momentum enables increased speed in delivery of food packs to the marginalized communities in Metro Manila facing the pandemic with extreme vulnerabilities.
The Samahan ng Nagkakaisang Pamilya ng Pantawid (SNPP), a 70,000-strong urban poor organization, began distribution of the Bayanihan Musikahan food packs from a few days after the launch of the marathon concert series, and is increasing pace and reach daily. Nearly 15,000 food packs have been provided families in dense, inner city pockets.
Filipino musical artists giving one hour concerts kick-started and sustain the Bayanihan Musikahan fund drive that enables this quick-response citizen action to stave off the possibility of worst case scenarios among communities compromised by poverty in Metro Manila.
Among those who already performed are Martin Nievera, Ebe Dancel, Acapellago, Karylle Tatlonghari and Spongecola, Bullet Dumas, Rachelle Gerodias and Byeong-in Park, and Morisette Amon.
Donations came in at an increasingly fast clip as the Lea Salonga concert proceeded, and it was immediately clear to an audience of tens of thousands that the surge was driven by the experience of virtual, communal bonding around an admired singer, and heightened awareness of the gravity of threat to impoverished communities.
The citizen-led marathon concert series, livestreamed on Facebook, is an unusal partnership between and among the significant talents of the Philippine music industry and the most trusted of civil society organizations. Philippine Business for Social Progress receives, accounts for, and disburses the funds. The SNPP hit the ground running because it has a complete database on its membership.