DSWD-7 creates skeletal force during 2019 Sinulog Festival

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII through its Disaster Response and Management Division (DRMD) has created a skeletal force to monitor the activities of the Sinulog Festival for DSWD to respond and to help during emergency situations, especially in time of the solemn foot procession on January 19, 2019 Saturday and in the grand parade on January 20, 2019 Sunday.

The Department will also house those children who might get separated from their guardians amidst their participation in the solemn foot procession and grand parade.

“We encourage those who will participate in the solemn procession and the Sinulog grand parade to be vigilant all the time and to be attentive to their children that they will be bringing along with them. I encourage the parents or guardians to let their children wear identification cards with contact information for easy identification in case of emergency. They may also write in a piece of paper their contact information and put it inside the pockets of their children’s clothes,” Disaster Response and Rehabilitation Section (DRRS) Focal Ms. Sheba S. Dabon said.

The DSWD-7 will also coordinate with the Local Government Unit (LGU), Philippine National Police (PNP) and other agencies should there be emerging concerns throughout the Sinulog Festival celebration.

In case of emergency or disaster, the Department is also prepared to provide logistic support like family food packs and non-food items to affected families or individuals. ###


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Uplifting Indigenous People’s Welfare Through Effective Social Intervention

The Philippines is lived with a culturally diverse community where various group of people embrace different customs and traditions, but are all bearers of the national brand “Mga Pilipino/Pinoy.” This includes the indigenous people communities who have unique cultural identities that significantly need preservation and protection and have been labeled as marginalized due to lack or limited access to education, health facilities, and other economic opportunities. Also, they are usually subjected to discrimination. Concerning to this, the Department of Social Welfare and Development has reached out the indigenous peoples and has helped them improve their level of well-being through access to internal and external resources and social services.

Completing the three meals everyday has been difficult to most of the members of the Bukidnon Tribe as most of them are only laborers of the haciendas, earning limited pay practically inadequate for their daily sustenance. This is also one of the factors why only a few children in the Bukidnon Tribe of Bgry. Kabulakan Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental were able to go to school.

Community Facilitator, Jeh Beh G. Katipunan conducts a spot check to Pantawid children of Tribu Bukidnon in The Kabulakan Elementary School to ensure that set conditionalities mandated by the Pantawid program are followed.

With the goal to protect, preserve and develop traditional indigenous skills and cultures, the DSWD has seen education as a significant step or foundation in empowering indigenous people to participate more in their communities. Recognizing the crucial role of education in people empowerment, the Department improved its provision of social services by bringing this to the communities where indigenous peoples live.

“Before, we could barely eat thrice a day because most of the people from the tribe are only laborers of haciendas. That is why, we are happy that there is now the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) who has supported us and organized our tribe. We are also grateful of the DSWD’s Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT) and Pantawid program for making us capable of sending our children to school,” Bukidnon Tribe Chieftain Dionesio Valor recounted.

Tribu Bukidnon IP Community has now access to public schools in the vicinity. There are 2 Day Care Centers accredited under the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office in the Municipality of Santa Catalina, which are the Kabulakan Day Care Center and the Mansanagan Day Care Center. The Kabulakan Elementary School serves their primary students while Obat High School for the Junior and Senior High School students.

“Previously, only a few children in our tribe are sent to school, but now almost all of the children of the tribe are enjoying the privilege to be in school. We are hopeful that this very few number of children (non-Pantawid) who are not yet in school will soon be granted a chance to education with the convergence of the efforts of the DSWD and other agencies,” Chieftain Donision Valor further said.

As of December 2018, there is zero record of IP eligible children missing classes and non-compliant in school, while there are no reports raised on students enrolled to Alternative Learning System (ALS) and case managed constantly skipping classes or non-compliant. According to the report of the Cluster Compliance Verification Officer Marline Gutang, there is 100% compliance of MCCT monitored children in Day Care Centers and in Elementary School as of the school year 2017.

The Local Government Unit of Sta. Catalina, Commission on Higher Education, Tamayo Foundation and the NCIP have also been cooperative in empowering the people of Bukidnon Tribe through provision of Scholarship Grants for the Tertiary Education of selected children of the Tribe.

Tribu Bukidnon of Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental performs their traditional Binanog Dance, a dance which is an imitation of the movement of the “Banog” or hawk during the 2018 Indigenous Peoples Summit.

“The most that we are trying our best to sustain are these scholarship grants (from different agencies/NGOs) and the regular attendance of our children in school, because we believe that soon when these children will graduate, they will be capable of offering a great help and support to our tribe especially when they’ll be able to land a good job,” Tribe Chieftain Valor said.

Among the other economic opportunities provided to the indigenous peoples are the health and sustainable livelihood services that currently benefit the indigenous people of Sta. Catalina.

There has been improved access to preventive health care services and facilities in Kabulakan Health Center among pregnant women and children 0-5 years of age and there is also zero record of IP Eligible Pantawid households unable to avail the key health services for the periods one to four of 2018.

These indigenous people of Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental have also shown a significant involvement in establishing sustainable livelihoods in their community through the support of different NGAs, LGUs and NGOs.   Among the livelihoods sustained by the group are Swine Production, Banana Plantation of Brgy. Manasanagan, Mini Sari-sari Store and Carabao Dispersal Livelihood Project.

Bukidnon Tribe are also actively involved in different People’s Organization/Association like Katribu Association, Manasanagan Water Association, Farmers Association, Sugar Planters, Kabulakan Water System Association, Women’s Association, Farmer’s Association and Planter’s Association that engage them in social, cultural and educational activities and help them continuously organize and mobilize their community for its progress and promotion.

Chieftain Valor also narrated that other members in their tribes have used to feel hopeless and were confused on how they should deal with their financial and family difficulties wherein most of them had just resorted to drinking and would eventually throw tantrums.

“But currently, there are no more tribe members who would resort to drinking because with the aid of the resources and opportunities given to them by the different government agencies, they have already learned how to strive and feed their families. Family problems that used to cause burden to some wives and husbands have been curtailed too and we are hopeful that this will be sustained,” the Chieftain amusingly recounted.

Having received social interventions from the DSWD and its partner stakeholders that aim to continuously establish an inclusive community that opens opportunities to all, Chieftain Dionesio Valor and his Tribe have seen a silver lining not just for their tribe but to all Indigenous People groups in the community.

Active members of DSWD-7’s Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT) program of Brgy. Kabulakan, pose for a souvenir photo during the celebration of 2018 Indigenous People (IP) Day at the Wildlife Sanctuary of Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental.

“We are indeed grateful. Today we already have mini-stores for our livelihood, we were helped with our backyard garden, we are also engaged in handicrafts made of drift woods and are well supported with materials needed for such handicrafts. As of now, we could say that we are no longer struggling in our daily living. When talking about income, we already have small or even big income-generating livelihoods. It also helped other people in the tribe because they would no longer go to the downtown to buy goods because there are already small merchandising stores in the vicinity that could provide our needs which also helped the group owners of our store to collect bigger funds/profit,” Chieftain Valor expressed.

With the complete adherence of Bukidnon Tribe to the program conditions and their excellent performance in developing their communities through and in partnership with the different stakeholders of the program they are chosen as one of the top two Model Indigenous People Communities during the Indigenous People’s Summit conducted on November 28-29, 2018. The other Model IP Community is the Tribu Aeta of Mabinay, Negros Oriental. ###


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DSWD 7 joins launching of Feeding Program for the children

Blessings poured in Catmon, Cebu on January 8, Tuesday, when the town inaugurated the newly built kitchens for the Kusina sa Kahimsug ug Pag-amuma (KKP) project. A program that aims to improve the health of malnourished children while teaching the kids the importance of good nutrition.

Governor Hilario Davide III with wife Jobel and Vice Governor Agnes A. Magpale together with other local officials and representatives of participating agencies during the Kusina sa Kahimsug ug Pag-amuma program launching in Catmon, Cebu.

Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III with wife Jobel and Vice Governor Agnes A. Magpale led the blessing and launching of the KKP Program and turn-over of the kitchen utensils and equipment for the new kitchens together with the representatives of Gawad Kalinga, Department of Education, Department of Social Welfare and Development, local officials, parents and pupils.

Catmon is the fourth municipality of Cebu after San Remigio, Samboan and Madridejos to launch the KKP program.

“The children are our future. Kinahanglan tanang paningkamot, sentro gyud para sa mga kabataan kay sila man ang mopuli nato (All our efforts must be focused on children because they are our future generation) said Cebu Governor Hilario P. Davide III. He added, “Kinahanglan gyud natong tagaan og insaktong pagkaon ang mga bata ug (angay) makat-on ang mga bata nga mokaon og utan kay daghan na diri sa Catmon. Sa mga bata, kinahanglan healthy aron healthy ang atong society (We need to provide the right food to children and they must learn to eat vegetables since it is abundant here in Catmon. Children must be healthy for us to have a healthy society).”

Vice Governor Agnes Magpale believes that “a healthy body is a key to a healthy mind”. She said that “Dako kaayo ang akong pasalamat nga nakigpartner nato ang DepEd, DSWD, Gawad Kalinga and others (I am thankful for our partner agencies).”

Two schools in Catmon received the kitchen equipment and utensils. Kusina 1 is in Catmon Integrated School (CIS), Poblacion and the Kusina 2 in Agsuwao Elementary School, situated in the mountainous part of Catmon, which is 20 kilometers away from the Poblacion.

The event started with a blessing officiated by the parish priest and a ribbon cutting by Mrs. Jobel Davide and Vice Governor Magpale and witnessed by the local officials, GK, DSWD, and DepEd representatives. During the program, CIS teachers sang “The Greatest Love of All”.

The turnover ceremony was followed by the signing of the pledge of commitment by the officials and representatives of participating agencies.

Also present during the event were Vice Mayor Irish Baylon–Gestopa, GK Provincial Head, Mr. Antonio M. Florendo Jr; KKP Advisor Jobella A. Davide; DepEd representative Jose Garry R. Napole; DSWD’s Nutritionist/Dietician Daphne Joyce B. Embradora; District Supervisor Dr. Omega Monisit-Sol and local officials. ###


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NHTS shares Listahanan 2 data to Cebu Province

The Department of Social Welfare and Development’s National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR) turned-over and installed the latest data of Listahanan 2 to Cebu Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) on January 10, Thursday, at Cebu Capitol main hall building.

Mr. Hillton John V. Edrial and Mr. Donald Rey Dejacto, NHTU officers hand over the data to PSWDO Marivic Racho-Garces, the PDO of Cebu Province.

Mr. Hillton John V. Edrial, NHTU Head and PSWDO Marivic Racho-Garces, the Privacy Data Officer (PDO) of Cebu Province signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) in compliance with the Data Privacy Act of 2012.

Mr. Donald Rey Dejacto, NHTU information technology officer, installed the Listahanan Data to the PDO’s desktop computer.

The Data Privacy Act of 2012 protects individual personal information and upholds the right to privacy by regulating the processing of personal information. The National Privacy Commission is tasked of administering and implementing this law.

The NHTS-PR is a database and an information management system that identifies who and where the poor are in the country. ###


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DSWD-7 disburses more than 4.2B for 4Ps

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII has disbursed 4.2 billion for the implementation of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps.

Some Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries in Cebu City who get their cash grant through the Automated Teller Machine (ATM).

Now on its 10th year of implementation, 4Ps continues to invest in the health and education of poor and vulnerable households to break the intergenerational cycle of poverty in the country.

As of December, 4Ps is being implemented in the 132 Local Government Units (LGUs) in the 4 provinces in Central Visayas region. A total of 277,900 are active household-beneficiaries. Of the 277,900 active household-beneficiaries, 250,617 are covered by the regular Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program while 27,283 are covered by the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT).

The MCCT includes beneficiaries who are not covered by the regular CCT, such as homeless street families, victims of natural and man-made disasters who are rendered homeless and with no means of livelihood, and Indigenous People in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDA).

4Ps provides cash grants to compliant household-beneficiaries with health grant worth Php 500.00 and educational grants worth Php 300.00 and Php 500.00 each to the children studying in elementary and high school, respectively. A rice subsidy in the form of cash amounting to Php 600.00 to the household-beneficiaries is also included.

Household-beneficiaries need to comply the following conditions in order to receive the full amount of the cash grants; school attendance of at least 85% per month for children enrolled in the elementary or high school. Children aged 5 and below would need to undergo preventive check-up as mandated by the Department of Health (DOH) and children enrolled in the elementary must receive deworming pills twice within the school year. Also, Pregnant women must receive pre and post-natal care based on DOH protocol.

Lastly, parent/s or guardians are required to attend the monthly Family Development Session (FDS).

Compliance rate of Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries in education is about 96.51%, 98.91% in health and 95.43% in FDS. The regional average compliance rate is higher than the national average compliance rate which is 96.95% compared to 95.78%.

The cash grants are disbursed to beneficiaries through the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) and they can claim their money through a cash card or through over-the-counter (OTC).

In far-flung area, conduit banks who are mostly rural and cooperative banks accredited by LBP are tapped in OTC payout. ###


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Amlan SLPAs: Empowered to empower others

“Dili lang kami ang na-empowered ani nga kalihukan, apil na sab ang among mga bana (This is not only empowering us, but it also empowers our husbands),” beams one of the members of the Pantawid Pamilya households in the municipality of Amlan, Negros Oriental.

Amlan is a 4th class municipality of Negros Oriental. It is composed of eight (8) barangays namely: Bio-os, Jantianon, Jugno, Mag-abo, Poblacion, Silab, Tambojangin and Tandayag. Located in the eastern coast of the province, fishing is its major industry. It also produces high value crops such as mango, coconut and sugarcane.

According to the 2015 census, Amlan has around 23,000 population of which, 922 are Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) partner-beneficiaries. Most of the members are plain housewives and some are engaged into small scale enterprises like food vending.

In 2016, there was an assessment conducted to the 4Ps partner-beneficiaries in the municipality. The result showed that these members earned around Php 150-200 a day which is not enough to provide the daily needs of a family. Given this situation, there is a need to implement a livelihood project for additional income.

In the first quarter of 2016, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) introduced the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) to the partner-beneficiaries. Jesse Jan. A. Plaza, SLP project development officer (PDO) assigned in the area organized the six (6) SLP associations with 93 participants. Out of 93, 10 are males and 83 are females.

On May 12, 2016, the DSWD granted a livelihood project with a total amount of Php 930,000.00 through the SLP Micro-Enterprise Development (MD) track Seed Capital Fund (SCF) to the six associations- Cañete Jantianon Pantawid SLPA, Poblacion Pantawid Livelihood SLPA, Mag-abo II Pantawid SLPA, Pantawid of Jantianon SLPA, Mag-abo Pantawid SLP and Pamilyang Pantawid SLPA.

The Cañete Jantianon Pantawid SLPA with 14 members received the amount of Php 140,000 for their individual business. Mag-abo II Pantawid SLPA with the same number of members also received Php 140,000, the Pantawid of Jantianon SLPA with 8 members received Php 80,000, Mag-abo Pantawid SLPA with 13 members received Php 130,000. The Pamilyang Pantawid SLPA with 19 members has received Php 190,000 and the Poblacion Pantawid Livelihood SLPA who has 25 members received Php 250,000. These associations are located 3-5 kilometers away from each other.

SLP members’ participation to Pantawid Rice Subsidy in the municipality


Before they were granted with a livelihood project, Mr. Plaza talked to the members to create a union of the Sustainable Livelihood Program Associations (SLPA) in the municipality. He aims to bond these groups for a greater and wider reach of opportunities in sustaining their livelihood business.

With no hesitations, all members supported the proposal.

The implementation of DSWD’s Supplementary Feeding Program (SFP) in Amlan served as an eye opener to the members to pursue the union of the SLPAs. This provided them opportunities to expand their market and go beyond their individual livelihood projects.

This eventually paved the way for the members to conceptualize a strategy to be able to participate in the municipality’s SFP procurement activities. Yet, for them to participate, a substantial amount of financial capital is required which was considered to be the greatest challenge of the associations.

With this, the association members strongly advocate among each other the realization of the union of the six (6) SLPAs in the municipality. Hence, the United Organization of Amlan (UOA) was formed on June 20, 2016 as per DOLE registration.

In the 3rd quarter of 2016, a series of consultation meetings and general assemblies of the SLP participants happened. During these days, Mr. Plaza and Pantawid Municipal Link Jocelyn A. Balansag gave inputs on values formation, leadership, and other capacity-building topics to the members in order for them to learn and be confident in managing their livelihood project with authority and pride.

Since the program participants wanted to make their business venture to be successful, they elected their officers who would oversee the business operation.

Each member then shared 50% or Php 5,000.00 of the seed capital fund they received from DSWD to the organization to raise the start-up capital for their business. The other half or Php 5,000.00 would be used for their individual projects.

These efforts which are geared toward attaining sustainable livelihood for their families, the members strongly supported the organization’s plan for their business. The trust and confidence they have for each other have been strengthened.

In September 2016, the members’ contribution reached Php 465,000.00. Good enough to start their participation to the SFP. 

Handling 93 SLP participants is never easy. The road to reaching the goals are surprisingly demanding and challenging.

In October 2016, the United Organization of Amlan participated in the bidding of goods for SFP in the municipality. However, their participation failed due to non-compliance of bidding requirements. This failure in its first attempt gave them learning insights and served an inspiration to them to do better and be involved again in another procurement activities.

The organization is genuinely united in terms of giving support to the group’s plans and activities. Indeed, optimisms overflow for them to pursue what they have started.

In December 2016, on its second try, the United Organization of Amlan participated in the local shopping of goods for the SFP in the municipality of San Jose. Fortunately, they were awarded as supplier of meat and fish for the implementation of the municipality’s SFP from January – June 2017.

The group extended their efforts in other local government units’ bidding participation. On November 27, 2017, the municipality of Valencia approved the UOA as the SFP supplier of rice, meat, fish and other groceries for the children in Child Development centers. The activity was only for one (1) month yet they earned enough profit from it.

The group never stopped aiming for a greener path. Aside from participating in the SFP implementation, they were also engaged in providing catering services in the municipality of Valencia and its neighboring areas.

In the 3rd quarter of 2017, the UOA was awarded by the DSWD Field Office (FO) VII as the supplier of meals and snacks during the conduct of social preparation activities and Provincial Project Development Assessment in the municipalities of Amlan, Tanjay, San Jose, Manjuyod and Bindoy of Negros Oriental. Also, they catered food during the Amlan’s 2017 Women’s Month Celebration as well as Smoke-Free Awareness activities.

The organization’s livelihood ventures continue to expand.

In February to March 2018, they became the service provider of the Cebu Healthcare Professional (CHP) and DSWD FO VII for the meals of the SLP participants during the one (1) month conduct of Skills Training on Housekeeping NC II.

To date, it is the major regular supplier of rice to Pantawid Pamilya partner beneficiaries in the municipality for their rice subsidy.


The efforts of all the members in the organization has paid off. Now, the group has its income generating business. Its participation to the Supplementary Feeding Program has opened the windows of economic opportunities, has honed their management and communications skills as well as strengthened the members’ bond and camaraderie.

The members with assigned tasks and responsibilities in the business operation were given Php 150.00 daily honoraria. The butcher takes the pig’s heads as additional share to the Php 150.00 daily honorarium.

This organization has also benefited other Pantawid households in a way that the members decided to buy hogs from them since majority of them are engaged into hog-raising. The organization has guaranteed of a livestock market at a reasonable price. Instead of buying some meat at the markets, the UOA would buy it from the Pantawid hog-raisers at a higher price than of the other local buyers. Thus, the middlemen can no longer come in and at the end of every production cycle, Pantawid members’ income is always guaranteed.

This activity created a chain effect of income augmentation to all participants involved, from the members who invested their financial and human capital to other Pantawid households who are engaged into hog-raising business.

Further, the organization’s catering engagements also created some job opportunities to the members. Service crew are paid at Php 323.00 per day while the cooks are paid at Php 500.00 per day.

To date, the United Organization of Amlan has generated more than Php 100,000.00 profit from all its livelihood engagements. It also acquired new physical assets such as freezer, meat grinder, cook wares, kitchen wares, utensils, food keepers and other kitchen items necessary for the business.

Lessons learned

Processing of documentary requirements to operate a business enterprise is a continuing challenge to the federation officers specifically to Ms. Meriam V. Yaeso, president of United Organization of Amlan. To address this concern, Ms. Yaeso attended orientations conducted by BIR and NFA. Mr. Plaza, assisted her on PhilGEPS Registration and continually provided technical assistance to the officers.

Recently, she was able to secure tax clearance from the Bureau of Internal Revenue. This clearance is a requisite for securing PhilGEPS Certificate (Platinum Membership) since the Blue Membership is no longer applicable. Thus, on December 7, 2018, the group already got the Platinum Membership certification of Philgeps.

In just few months from its conception, the United Organization of Amlan was able to secure the following documents: Business Permit, DOLE Registration, BIR Registration, PhilGEPS (Blue Membership) and NFA License.

Aside from the challenges of processing and complying with the legal documents, some federation officers also experienced conflict with their spouses when they would come home late due to concerns in the project implementation.

Also, the demand to deliver 90 kg of pork every week for the SFP is one of the reasons of their need to extend long hours of search for live hogs to be butchered. Their husbands complained that they can no longer attend to household chores and other demands in their homes. But, with the help of Family Development Sessions and counselling by the Municipal Link to the husbands, these conflicts were eventually resolved.

Upon recent conversation of the members to the officers, they shared that their husbands are no longer complaining. In fact, their husbands were the ones who did the household chores and attend to their children’s needs when they’re not around.

Implication for Replication

Financial capital has always been a major challenge in starting up a business. Yet, this challenge did not hinder the SLPA members’ desire to expand their livelihood project. By investing half of the seed capital for their individual projects, they had shown self-denial: abandoning their own personal interest but considering as well the welfare and betterment of the lives of other Pantawid partner beneficiaries.

The pooling of funds amounting to Php 465,000.00 paved the way to greater opportunities for program participants’ worthy of replication.

The effect of empowering the SLPA members is manifested by the changes experienced by the members and their families such as from being plain housewives to capacitated officers in the organization; from whining husbands to genuine helpmates; from merely focusing on income generation to opening doors of job opportunities to other members, and secured markets for small-scale livestock growers. All these cast light for possible replication of strategy in other areas in Negros Oriental.

The SLP Provincial Coordinator of Negros Oriental Rosana Coritico is constantly encouraging PDOs in other cities/municipalities to develop and capacitate SLPAs to be able to participate in the procurement activities of their respective LGUs and in due time, expand their livelihood projects.

The United Organization of Amlan is now recognized by the Local Government of Amlan as an entity, supplying goods and services to Amlan and to its neighboring municipalities. ###


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