June 1, 2023

The Baguio Country Club has become the runaway winner among all clubs in terms of giving relief items for caddies and flagmen since the declaration of community quarantine.

BCC Sports, Entertainment, Activities, and Recreations Director Roanne Galicia reported the eighth wave of relief donation was held on May 29 before the city transitioned from general community quarantine to modified GCQ.

BCC has spent more than P700,000 for the more than 80 caddies and flagmen who were left with no source of income during the more than two-month quarantine due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Inquirer Golf, which closely monitored the relief efforts of various clubs in the country, has credited BCC for its relentless efforts to reach out to its caddies and flagmen in time of needs.

Galicia said the BCC management is thankful to the kindred souls such as the club members, guests, and other donors for their cash donations that made the relief drive possible and successful.

BCC spent more than P70,000 up to P116,000 per relief drive, which saw the donation of assorted food items to the beneficiaries such as rice, assorted grocery items, pork, chicken, vitamin C tablets, and washable face masks.

BCC-SEAR has also been updating donors with financial statements for transparency and for them to be updated where their donations went so far.

The Camp John Hay and Pinewoods Golf & Country Club also conducted their own relief drive, as golfers also reached out to the caddies of the two clubs.

Meanwhile, caddies are hoping that the bill seeking to provide health, retirement, and other benefits to them will hurdle both houses of Congress soon.

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, the House Committee on Labor and Employment approved House Bill 1343 authored by Baguio Rep. Mark Go, who earlier said that most of the independent caddies have no access to benefits accorded to regular employees such as Social Security, PhilHealth, Pag-Ibig, as well as retirement benefits.

More than 90 golf courses operate in the country today, of which mostly are located in Luzon. – Harley F. Palangchao