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Learning from the Country's Best 2022

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In its desire to further expedite its growth, the HPP Employees Multipurpose Cooperative visited two "big brother" coops to try to learn from their experiences. Dubbed as "Lakbay-Aral", these coop visits are a best practice among cooperatives in the country to try to learn from each other and provide better service to its members. True to Cooperative Principle #6  Cooperation Among Cooperatives – Lakbay-Aral is aimed at helping cooperatives help each other for their collective growth. 


stmartinlogoOur Lakbay-Aral started in the morning of June 2, 2022, where officers and members of the Board visted the St. Martin of Tours Credit and Development Cooperative in Bocaue Bulacan. At around 8:30am, HPPEMC was welcomed by SMTCDC officers and staff led by their CEO Mr. Serafin M. Celestino Jr. The staff of SMTDC toured and introduced HPPEMC to the various departments of their cooperative. They shared that SMTDC was organized 52 years ago as a credit union by fifteen "Cursillistas" who contributed a total of TWO HUNDRED FIFTY PESOS as initial capital. Their objective was to create wealth among the parishioners of St. Martin of Tours Parish in Bocaue, Bulacan through the cooperative system of self-help or allowing people to help themselves. And although success did not come easy for SMTCDC, it's style of governance of TRANSPARENCY and ACCOUNTABILITY particularly during its early years led to its exponential growth. SMTCDC soon grew to more than 60,000 members with 12 branches spread across the provinces of Bulacan, Bataan, and Nueva Ecija.

Today, St. Martin of Tours Credit and Development Cooperative is one of the few Billionaire Cooperatives in the country effectively serving the needs of its members and the community. Indeed a true success and inspiring story HPPEMC can learn from. 



Right after a sumptuous lunch courtesy of SMTCDC, the group headed straight to Baguio to visit the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center Employees Multipurpose Cooperative. And although it was already 4PM when we reached Baguio, the staff and officers of BGHMCEMPC led by their General Manager Ms. Rose Ann Pascua, were more than happy and very accommodating to welcome us to their Cooperative. They were even apologotic as their building was still under construction. 😊 

BGHMCEMPC is a "closed-type" cooperative in that their membership is limited to employees of Baguio General Hospital. They started as a "sari-sari store" in 1962 with some doctors contributing the initial capital of P885.00. They were formally registered as a cooperative in 1998 and even though membership is limited being a "closed-type" coop, they have since grown to close to 1,000 members with more than P300M in Assets. BGHMCEMPC is one of the few cooperatives that we can consider pandemic-proof. Through good governance, they were not only able to continue serving their members but despite the challenges brought about by COVID-19 to hospitals like them, BGHMCEMPC was still able to provide good dividends and patronage refund to its members in 2021.  


2022stratplanAfter a day of information overload, the group settled at the Ibay Zion Hotel for a 2-day Strategic Planning Workshop which was facilitated by National Confederation of Cooperatives (NATCCO).

During the 2-day activitay, the group was able to craft HPPEMC's 5-year strategic plans as well as update the Cooperative's Vision/Mission Statements and Core Values, making them more relevant as the Coop has grown in size and number since it's founding in 2014.

Everybody agreed that the 2022 Lakbay-Aral and Planning Session was a success. Everybody came home inspired and ready to take HPPEMC to the next level. With enough focus and dedication, HPPEMC's dream to one day be a Billionaire Cooperative like their "big brothers" in the cooperative sector will no doubt become a reality. 


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