HIDILYN Diaz received the initial of the many financial incentives coming her way for making Philippine sports history.
Fruits of labor
The 30-year-old Filipina weightlifter already received the P10 million cash incentive pledged by the MVP Sports Foundation after winning the country's first-ever Olympic gold medal in the Tokyo Games.
The financial bonus was deposited through Diaz's bank account on Friday.
"Thank you so much Sir MVP (Manny V. Pangilinan), Sir Al (Panlilio), and sir VPV (Victorico Vargas). Thank you sa support na binigay niyo sa Team HD and sa akin at sa pagtitiwalang binigay ninyo," said Diaz during an hour-long zoom call with MVPSF officials.
"Malaking bagay po ito sa amin. Lalo na last year na shaky yung life, ang daming pangyayari dahil sa COVID. Hindi niyo kami iniwan."
Since 2011, MVPSF has been supporting national athletes through the various National Sports Associations (NSAs) with regard to overseas trainings, personal allowances, and other expenses.
Panlilio, the MVPSF president, told Diaz during the virtual meeting how emotional they were moments after the pride of Zamboanga City made the historic feat.
"Umiyak kaming lahat nung nabuhat mo yung 127 kilograms," said Panlilio.
Pangilinan meanwhile, told Diaz of the foundation's plan to bring Hidilyn's parents in Manila from Zamboanga City, since the Filipina weightlifter couldn't leave for home until she finishes her mandated quarantine at the Sofitel Hotel.
"Your parents are in Zamboanga, right?," Pangilinan asked. "Maybe we can have the entire family here. We'll take care of the plane fare and accommodation."
Diaz turned emotional upon hearing of Pangilinan's plan, and expressed her gratitude to the MVPSF for its unwavering support to her throughout the years.
"Dati nung sobrang down ako, hindi ninyo kami pinabayaan. Thank you so much sa support. Nung humingi kami ng tulong, nandoon kayo. And tuluy-tuloy po yung tulong na binibigay ninyo," she said.
"Basta walang iwanan. We look forward to seeing you personally. Thank you HD," said Pangilinan.