We all know that SM is a shopping mall, right? But do you also know that SM also has a foundation and different programs that gives back to the community? I attended one rare event that gave me high respect at SM!
SM Cares, a division of SM Foundation through its Program on Disability and Affairs in partnership with SM Cinema, Deaf-Blind Support Philippines, MTRCB and Center for Advocacy, Learning and Livelihood(C.A.L.L) held a "Special Movie Screening for the Blind and Deaf".
Bien Mateo, Program Director of Disability Affairs of SM Cares and SM Supermalls VP for North Luzon said the event is also supported by various People with Disability(PWD) Organizations including: AKAP Pinoy, Philippine Blind Union, National Council on Disability Affairs(NCDA) and the Philippine Foundation for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled(PFRD).
The Movie Television Review and Classification Board(MTRCB) expressed support to the project. Yay! And I'm glad that due to a positive feedback they got from last year, they expanded this year's screening to other malls to accommodate more persons with visual and hearing impairments. They are also planning to make it not only onvce a year event but every quarter. That is good news to our friends!
"The PWD sector has accepted this program very positively. The families of the PWD's who experienced the sensory friendly movies in SM Cinemas are very thankful for the experience that they see their children enjoy the cinemas just like anyone else", Mateo said.
MTRCB formalized its partnership with SM through a signing of a Memoramdum of Understanding before the screening
And to complete the entire film experience, the featured movie had an audio-description for the benefit of the blind, as well as subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing to read. This projects reflects the company's vision to make SM the mall for all, including persons with disabilities like the deaf and blind.
Through projects like these, anyone can enjoy what SM has to offer regardless of stature. SM Cinemas have been retrofitted with wheelchair slots. Film operators have been trained to set appropriate sound levels with light balance, assuring convenience and comfort for the audience of sensory movies.
While watching the movie, I closed my eyes to get the feel of it. The narrative story was very thorough. Every detail of the narration is perfectly described so it will be easier to understand and picture the story. The sound was a little louder but very clear.
Kudos to SM Cares for this advocacy! I hope they'll continue to inspire other organizations to help our friends in need. Projects like this, brings us hope for the humanity. Good job SM Foundation!