Women play a vital role in society. In the Philippines, where women comprise half of the country’s population, promoting increased access to health, education and income opportunities for women is essential for progress and prosperity.

SM Cares, a Division of SM Foundation and the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of SM Prime Holdings, Inc., recognizes the important role of women and is dedicated to championing women’s issues, including their maternal health rights. Its program on Women and Breastfeeding has initiatives that make women all over the country aspire for economic independence through exhibits and seminars. It has also served as an inspiration for the rights of mothers to breastfeed in any place in the mall. With their critical role in life, women have their unique needs that be recognized. SM not only addresses these needs but also highlights women’s significant role in the family and in society through its various programs, which recognize and celebrate their uniqueness and individuality.

18Ms. Teresita Sy-Coson, Vice Chairperson of SM Investments Corp. (middle), is joined by Australian Embassy Officials led by Daniel Featherstone, Counsellor-Economic (L) and Ming Toh, First Secretary-Economic (3rd from left).

The Australian Embassy is committed to promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls in the Philippines. Its longstanding aid program supports women’s access to decision-making, leadership and peace building; promotes women’s economic empowerment; and ending violence against women and girls.


On the occasion of International Women’s Day and National Women’s Month, SM Cares and the Australian Embassy have partnered to celebrate women micro-entrepreneurs – mothers, daughters, sisters, making a real difference in improving the lives of their families and their communities.

The Australian Embassy is investing in women-led micro, small and medium enterprises across the Philippines to promote greater participation in the country’s economic and social development. SM Cares is leveraging the global retail and mall expertise of the SM Group to provide women entrepreneurs with a premium platform to showcase their creativity, resourcefulness and business acumen.

Supported by the Australian Government’s aid program, these organizations include:

  1. (1) Antique Development Foundation (ADF), (2) Caritas Manila, (3), Gifts and Graces (G&G) Fair Trade Foundation Incorporated, together with, (4) Green Earth Heritage Foundation Philippines, and, (5) Handicraft of Aklan Multi-Purpose Cooperative (HAMPCO); (6) Katungodhan Samareña Foundation, Incorporated (KSFi), (7) Lake Sebu Indigenous Women Weavers Association Incorporated (LASIWWAI), (8) Philippine Christian Foundation, (9) Philippine Foundation for Resources Management (PFRM), as well as, (10) Simbagsa Pag-asenso Incorporated (SEDP), and (11) Southern Partners and Trade Fair Center Incorporated (SPFTTCI) to name a few.21206

There is no better partnership than the Australian Embassy and SM Cares as they share a similar vision. SM Cares has programs that advocate women empowerment and breastfeeding support under their Program on Women and Breastfeeding Mothers. It recognizes the role of women in our society and extends its program to a wider scope by including Persons with Disabilities, Children and Youth, Senior Citizens, Overseas Filipino Workers and Environment and Sustainability.

22Annie S. Garcia, President of SM Supermalls (L) and HE Amanda Gorely, Australian Ambassador to the Philippines (3rd from L) were presented with tokens of appreciation from the women entrepreneurs. 

Presented by SM Cares and the Australian Embassy, the trade fair showcases what women micro-entrepreneurs can achieve for themselves and for others when given the right support. More importantly, the partnership affirms that when we invest in women, we build stronger communities.

Celebrate the craftsmanship and creativity of these women entrepreneurs. Every purchase is an investment in building communities. Be part of it.