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DSWD-7 conducts voters’ education, information campaign to 4Ps beneficiaries

To further strengthen the election-related and active citizenship campaign of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)-7 to its Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries, a series of Voters’ Education and discussion of election info-briefer have been conducted since February 26, 2019.

Kerwin Macopia, Pantawid Information Officer, discusses further the election info-briefer to the Pantawid Partner beneficiaries in Mandaue City.

This effort aims to provide beneficiaries with information that will importantly guide them in protecting themselves and the program from possible exploits during elections. In the activity, Pantawid partner-beneficiaries were constantly encouraged to exercise their right to suffrage and protect its secrecy and sanctity amid the spread of fake news on the program implementation and the approaching elections.

Pantawid Information Officer Kerwin Macopia who led the discussion and distribution of the election info-briefer to Pantawid partner-beneficiaries in Mandaue, Lapu-lapu and Cebu City had emphasized one of the misconceptions of the beneficiaries and other people about the program and elections.

Wala’y laing makapatangtang ninyo sa programa kon dili ang inyo lamang dili pagsunod sa mga kondisyon niini ug kung wala na moy mga estudyante nga makarga sa programa (You can only be removed from the program if you fail to comply with the set conditions of the program or if you no longer have eligible children for monitoring),” emphasized Macopia.

The beneficiaries are also encouraged to report any anomalies or suspicious activities related to Pantawid Pamilya and elections in their area to the DSWD or City/Municipal Link nearest to them.

The 4Ps is a program of the national government that invests in the health and education of poor households primarily of children aged 18 and below. It provides cash grants to compliant household beneficiaries with health grant worth Php 500 and educational grants worth Php 300 and Php 500 for each children studying in elementary and high school. Apart from that, the beneficiaries are also entitled with a rice subsidy in the form of cash amounting to Php 600. ###


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DOLE turns over livelihood starter kits to DSWD-7 AVRC II graduates

A total of 26 visually and orthopedically impaired graduates of skills training in the Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC) II of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) – 7 have recently received livelihood starter kits amounting to Php 243,292.50 from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) 7’s Integrated Livelihood Program.

Mr. Em Caniban (second from right), one of the visually impaired graduates of the DSWD-7’s AVRC II receives a livelihood starter kit from the DOLE Integrated and Livelihood Program with massage therapy tools and items inside.

The Integrated Livelihood Program of DOLE is a capacity-building assistance/grant for the livelihood of the vulnerable and indigent workers, either for individual or group livelihood projects.

Labor and Employment Officer Fernando S. Lopez and Administrative Assistant IV Erwin A. Demiar of DOLE-7 spearheaded the turnover and distribution of the 26 livelihood starter kits to AVRC II graduates of the courses Massage Therapy, Sewing Craft, Commercial Arts and Craft, Computer Technology, Consumer Electronics, Commercial Cooking and Basic Cosmetology to help them immediately start a livelihood activity.

Mr. Graeme Ferdinand Armecin, head of AVRC II, has expressed his appreciation on this provision of tools, supplies and materials to the 26 PWD graduates of the Center through the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program in collaboration with the Helping Hands Organization of PWDs Inc. which is an accredited co-partner of DOLE and a self-help group organized by AVRC II.

“The continued partnership of DOLE-7, DSWD-7 and the Helping Hands Organization of PWDs Inc., manifests how the government and private people’s organization is supporting and preparing PWDs to be economically productive,” added Mr. Armecin.

This effort aims to promote livelihood and entrepreneurship among the marginalized sectors in the community that includes the Persons with Disability (PWD) and reduce the impact of poverty to generate employment through actual practice of acquired skills and use of livelihood starter kits.

This is a one-time assistance for this group of graduates who were identified as beneficiaries of the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program but the proposals from Partner-People’s Organizations like the helping Hands Organization of PWDs Inc. for the provision of financial assistance for starter kits to another group of AVRC II graduates will still be accommodated. ###


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Caohagan SLPA: Mag Pan Bisaya na!

“Daghan ganahan sa mga nagpuyo diri sa Caohagan ganahan sa among pan bisaya nga sila pa gani ang mo follow up namo nga magluto mi, sila gyu’y mo una og ingon namo ana. Mao ng nadasig pud mi nga maghimo og pan. Tungod ana, adunay dugang kalambuan sa among asosayon diri sa Caohagan (Many from our neighborhood like the bread. Actually they are the ones who tell us to make bread and encourage us to do our best every single day. Because of that support from the community, we became fruitful),” said Minerva Manoy, Caohagan Pan Bisaya Sustainable Livelihood Program Association (SLPA) Treasurer.

The proud mothers and members of the Caohagan Pan Bisaya SLPA.

The Caohagan Pan Bisaya SLPA is situated in Brgy. Caohagan, Olango Island, Lapu-Lapu City. The association is composed of 48 members with 5 men and 43 women who are doing the business.

Since the members are living in the island, most of them rely their main source of income through fishing. This kind of hard work does not guarantee enough earnings for their day-to-day needs.

In May 2016, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) granted the Caohagan Pan Bisaya SLPA the amount of Php278,037.40 for the association to venture another livelihood project. The group officially started their business in July of the same year.

Since then, the group has found loyal customers for their bread. Some are local and others are foreigners like Korean, Japanese and American tourists visiting the island. For over 2 years of running the business, the members see the progress of their Pan Bisaya livelihood project.

But, what is really Pan bisaya?

“Ang ilang asosasyon sa SLP naggamit og pugon o tradisyonal nga pamaagi sa pagluto og pan bisaya. Nag dugang sab sila og ispisyal nga sagol sama sa tuno ug desiccated coconut. Pan bisaya kini tungod sa ilang pamaagi sa pagluto (The association call it pan bisaya because they use a traditional kiln in making bread and they add special ingredients like coconut milk and desiccated coconut to make the bread more flavorful),” said Chuck G. Mutia, SLP Monitoring Project Development Officer.

With this, Brgy. Captain Ranilo C. Abayan of Caohagan supports the SLPA by allowing them to use the store area for free with corresponding memorandum of agreement. This has inspired the group to make pan bisaya daily.

The encouragement they get from the community folks and from the tourists is one of the reasons why the lives of the members become more productive.

The way they manage the business helps the members benefit from it together with their families.

Sukad naabot ang SLPA diri, dako gyud nig natabang namo kay tungod nga sa wala pani sya, dili gyud mi kahibalo mo gama og mga pan, di mi kahibaw mugama anang unsay mga menu, procedure ani niya. Kung ang mga membro maglisod gani unya wala sila’y lain magamit, makaduol gyud sila sa asosasyon kay naa man silay madawat nga ginansya (Since SLPA came to our place, it has helped us a lot. Before, we had no idea about the ingredients and how to process this bread. When it came, it helped improve the lives of the members whenever they need some amount for their families), said Minerva Manoy, SLPA Treasurer.

Dako kaayo mi’g pasalamat sa mga kadagkoan sa DSWD nga sila usa pud nga ni padasig kanamo nga kining asosasyon ma improve gyud. Kay bisan kalisod pag-atubang ani sama aning sa dakong bawod, sila mauri gyud aron mugiya namo unsaon pagpalambo aning asosayon (Our heartfelt gratitude to DSWD region 7 for their encouragement. Despite the difficulties the DSWD workers would encounter like the big waves to the island and vice versa, they still come over to help us in strengthening the association),” said Blisilda A. Mellino, SLPA President.

The association will continue to strive hard to make Caohagan Pan Bisaya SLPA a productive and successful one. ###


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Various Tilts Culminate DSWD-7’s 2019 Adoption Consciousness Fete

Three competition categories that aim to further advocate legal adoption culminate the 2019 Adoption Consciousness Celebration of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office 7 on March 4, 2019, Monday at SM City Cebu.

The activity was participated in by different Child Caring Agencies, Local Government Unit of Cebu, Central Visayas Adoptive Parents Association (CVAPA), University of the Visayas, St. Theresa’s College, and other non-government organizations and participating individuals.

Children from the Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart Children’s Home Inc. show what they’ve got during the Pop Dance Competition of the 2019 Adoption Consciousness Celebration.

Prior to the culmination, a Walk for Legal Adoption was done simultaneously in the four provinces of region 7 on February 26, 2019 to kick off this annual celebration of Adoption Consciousness, bearing the theme “Pagmamahal Palaganapin, Legal na Pag-aampon Ating Gawin!” (Spread Unconditional Love through Legal Adoption).

This annual celebration constantly intents to address the stigma of adoption in the community and strengthen the Department’s campaign for legal adoption.

Assistant Regional Director for Administration Grace Q. Subong in her opening remarks encouraged everyone to join in the call of spreading love through legal adoption.

“Putting a child in a family is not only the responsibility of DSWD. You are part of this cause,” emphasized Ms. Subong.

A representative of one of the partners of the Department also expressed her gratitude for getting a chance to work with the DSWD in consistently upholding this advocacy concerning the welfare of the vulnerable, neglected and abandoned children.

“Raising children is no easy task. Some of the social workers and foster parents really know this. Blood, sweat, and tears altogether occur. But it’s all worth it. That is why I am very grateful to be working with the wonderful people of DSWD and my fellow CWSG (Child Welfare Specialist Group),” expressed Atty. Darling Chyrmyth Wagas.

She also said, “We can all make a difference. It is my firm believe that the DSWD together with its partners will service through this challenge and see a silver lining, feeling confidently beautiful because of the spirit of care which guides us.”

The Pop Dance Competition, “Give It Your Best Shot!” Photo Contest, and the “Duyog sa Paghigugma” Songwriting Contest, highlighted the event.

The three winning groups of the Pop Dance Competition that have grooved their best on the stage are the Children’s Shelter of Cebu, Inc., 3rd Place; Children of Cebu Foundation Inc., 2nd Place; and the Albert Schweitzer Familienwerk Foundation Inc., 1st Place.

Christian Santarita and Aubrey Lynn Soliano got the 3rd place with their original composition entitled “Treat Them as Your Own”. Also, the students of St. Theresa’s College, Johana Alexis Maloloy-on, Jericho Radaza, Fiona Grace Rago, Mikaela Jacy Rebaño and Denise Makatangay who performed their piece entitled “Kaulayaw” bagged the 2nd place, while the duo Regil Gador and Gabriel Bernil who delivered an original piece entitled “Paglaom sa Pag-ampon” won the 1st place.

For the Photo Contest, the 3rd place was awarded to the Social Welfare and Development (SWAD) Cebu with their entry entitled “Spreading Love Beyond Boundaries,” the 2nd place to the Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked Persons (RRPTP) with their entry “Love Makes a Family” and the 1st Place to the Office of the Regional Director’s (ORD) which entry entitled “Overjoyed.”

The “Duyog sa Paghigugma” Songwriting Champion Regil Gador (right), belts out her original composition “Paglaom sa Pag-ampon” during the Culminating Activity of the 2019 Adoption Consciousness Celebration.

The winners of each category were awarded with certificates of recognition and a cash prize, while the non-winners received a certificate of appreciation and consolation prize.

Through these activities, the DSWD is hopeful to further increase the awareness of the people in the community about the beauty of legal adoption. Moreover, it continues to encourage interested couples willing to provide a nurturing environment and home to abandoned and neglected children to visit the field office and undergo the legal process of adoption. ###


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Newbie composer wins Duyog sa Paghigugma songwriting tilt

The poignant yet hopeful song “Paglaom sa Pag-ampon,” composed by first time song writer Regil Alby Gador from Mandaue City bagged the first place in the “Duyog sa Paghigugma” songwriting competition conducted by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII.

Regil Alby Gador (right) with guitarist Gabriel Bernil interprets the song “Paglaom sa Pag-ampon” during the culmination of the Adoption Consciousness celebration at the Activity Center of SM City Cebu.

The song which was interpreted by Regil and accompanied by guitarist Gabriel Bernil at the culminating activity of the Adoption Consciousness celebration held in the Activity Center of SM City Cebu on March 4, 2019, emerged as the winner among the 6 entries and won the Php 10,000.00 cash prize.

Regil said that it was her first time to join a song writing competition. “I praise Jesus for enabling me to compose and perform the song and I am also thankful to my family and friends for their moral support,” shared Regil.

“Through the bible verse Psalm 27:10 which states ‘Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me’, I was able to write the lyrics of the song Paglaom sa Pag-ampon,” explained Regil.

“Based on that bible verse, I was able to put myself in the shoes of those kids who were abandoned and neglected and despite that they were not able to feel the love of their parents, the Lord still loves them and eventually they will be given to a new family who will adopt them,” said the 22-year old active member in the music ministry of the Jesus Christ the Healer Christian Fellowship.

Regil shared that winning the songwriting competition is not her main goal but the message of the song which can help in the advocacy of legal adoption.

This year’s theme is “Pagmamahal Palaganapin, Legal na Pag-aampon Ating Gawin! (Spread Unconditional Love through Legal Adoption),” which reiterates the call to ensure that orphaned, neglected, abandoned, and surrendered children are provided with the secure, permanent and loving homes which they deserve. ###


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DSWD-7 serves 1,027 families affected by recent fire incidents in Cebu, Bohol

A total of 1,027 families in the Province of Cebu and Bohol who were affected by the recent fire incidents that hit in their areas in February this year have been provided with disaster relief assistance by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) – 7 through its Disaster Response Management Division (DRMD).

DRMD staff spearhead distribution of family food packs and non-food items to fire affected families in Brgy. Kinasang-an, Cebu City during the Disaster Relief Operations conducted by the Department on February 15, 2019.

In the Disaster Relief Operations spearheaded by the DRMD, sleeping kits, hygiene kits, kitchen utensils and family food packs (with 6 kilos of rice, 4 canned meats, 4 canned fish and 6 sachets of coffee inside) have been distributed to the fire-affected families to temporarily help them in their daily sustenance after the recent fire that hit their residence. The relief assistance provided to these families amounted to P8,057,560.30.

The different fire incidents happened in Brgy. Pardo, Cebu City affected 132 families; Brgy. Tangke, Talisay City, 108; Brgy. Tinago Cebu City, 65; Brgy. Kinasang-an, Cebu City, 61; Brgy. Ermita, Cebu City, 647 and in Brgy. Poblacion, Talibon, Bohol, 14.

Apart from the assistance provided by the Department, these fire-affected families have also received assistance from their Local Government Units in the form of financial and food support.

The DSWD-7 has maintained 30,000 family food packs in its regional warehouse ready for distribution upon the request of LGUs for emergency situations. ###


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Dancing to the rhythm of life

Hip-hop, R&B and K-POP those are just few of the music genres that a simple girl named Abbie expresses her feelings toward her friends, neighbors and loved ones.

The rhythm of the music symbolizes the different high and low points in her life and the way she dances to the different music signifies her flexibility to adapt with the different situations in life.

For Abbie Sumagang, dancing is her way of coping from stress and pressure which a typical teenager faces nowadays. She also does this as a medium of promoting an active lifestyle and camaraderie among the youth may it be in school or in her neighborhood. Abbie said “I dance often not only to develop my talent and be known for it but through dance I gained new friends.”

Abbie is currently a grade 8 student at Campalanas National High School.

Para nako ang pagsayaw kay usa ka paagi aron ma-express imong self (For me dance is one way of expressing one’s self),” Abbie said in mixed English and dialect.

Ever since she was young, Abbie participated in many school activities and even performed during their town fiesta celebrations.

According to her, she likes to join to a lot of academic and extracurricular activities in school and in the community because it enhances her inter-personal skills.

Abbie is the youngest among the four children of Abner and Helen Sumagang from Sitio Balogo, Barangay Campalanas, Lazi, Siquijor.

Abbie’s residence is the end sitio of their barangay, about 18 kilometers from the town hall. She recalls that every day she walks the rough hills road with her schoolmates from their house to her school that is why she wakes up early in the morning and helps her parents prepare her things.

Abbie finished elementary as the Class Valedictorian and she continues to be on top of her class even up to this day.

Athlete and Volunteer

Aside from her academic achievements, Abbie has also put a name for herself in sports during intramurals as she was among the school’s representatives in the chess competition during the District Level Competition.

An active member of the Girl Scout of the Philippines (GSP), Abbie wants to become an accountant someday. “I want to become an accountant, because it deals more on mathematics, which I love especially problem solving. I always love helping my classmates on problem solving,” explains Abbie.

She has been very helpful to her classmates and is not selfish to share her knowledge in Mathematics and Science. In fact, she has won various awards in the Mathematics Teachers Association of the Philippines (MTAP) Math challenge both in the district and division levels.

She has been an active volunteer in their barangay and participated in some community activities such as clean-up drive and tree planting.

One of her major extra-curricular involvements is in the Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council. She shares that her involvement motivated her to assist in times of emergency situations. Abbie tells that her place is identified to be a hazard prone area. Furthermore, she said the council is the prime mover in times of school disaster drills, accidents during intramurals and in the information campaign on disaster preparedness at school.

Abbie says “Ang kapobrehon dili kini pagalantawon isip usa ka babag sa pagkab-ot sa mga pangandoy apan usa kini kahagit sa atong kinabuhi (Poverty should be viewed not as a hindrance in achieving one’s goal but rather as a challenge in life).”

She never falters to strive to achieve her dreams because she considers every difficult circumstance as a challenge to herself rather than a reason to surrender.


She is grateful for her family that despite of their simple living, they have maintained a healthy relationship. She recalls her parent’s conviction that “bisan makaagi mi og kalisud, problema ug mga pagsulay ang panaghiusa isip usa ka pamilya gayud ang matigbabaw (Despite the hardships, problems and challenges, solidarity among the family members should rise above all).”

Vina, Abbie’s elder sister, expresses that she considered Abbie an achiever. “We are proud of her because not only she achieves her aspiration as a student, she also performs her household chores well.” Vina added that Abbie never forgets to do her household chores before and after school.

As a form of family bonding, the Sumagang family maintains a small backyard garden at home that also serves as their source of food supply and income. They family helps their neighbors by sharing them vegetables and corn cobs every time they harvest.

Abner, Abbie’s father, is a carpenter and at times, works at their farm for additional income. Her Mother Helen, who hails from Pampanga, is a simple housewife and maintains the family backyard garden.

The couple often wondered how they were able to send all their children to school given their limited income. Before Abner went to carpentry, he used to be a fisherman and they struggled a lot financially before they became a Pantawid Pamilya partner-beneficiary.

Lisud ang trabaho sa usa ka mananagat kay kung bati ang panahon o adunay bagyo dili makapangisda si Papa (A fisherman’s work is difficult because if the weather is bad and if there is a typhoon, my father cannot work),” Abbie recounts.

When Helen decided to work in Manila as a housekeeper in one of her relatives in order to sustain the needs of the family, Abner had to assume both roles as a father and mother.

Abbie exclaimed “Si Papa ang nibuhat sa mga trabahuon nga gitrabaho pud ni Mama sama sa pagluto, paglaba ug uban pa (My father had to do the household chores as my mother did like cooking, washing laundry among others).”

However, the family did not lose hope and continued to strive for the betterment of their family coupled by prayers.

When they become Pantawid Pamilya partner-beneficiary, Helen came home to take care of their children and on the other hand Abner was also able to find a better job that would augment their family needs.

Abbie Sumagang (leftmost) together with other Exemplary Pantawid Pamilya Children from Central Visayas Ma. Janica Delusa, Jhefrell Casido and Dylene Jee Polea during the 2018 Araw ng Kabataan at the SM North EDSA Skydome.

It was shared by Helen that the program did not only help them financially but it has also strengthened their family relationship with the aid of the Family Development Session (FDS) where they learned to be more responsible and mature in handling their children and family as a whole. They are now aware of the different internal and external resources in the community giving them easier access in finding better solutions to address the needs of their family.

At a very a young age, through the guidance of her parents, Abbie was able to balance her personal, family and social life in school, church and community. She hopes that one day, all the children in their community will be able to finish their education and reach their dreams in life.

She continues to inspire other people to help others in the simplest way they can. She and her family upholds to the mantra “Kapag may itinanim may aanihin (What you sow, so shall you reap).”

With this, she created her own meaning of the acronym 4Ps. One has to have Patience, Persistence coupled with Passion in everything he/she does to achieve Perfection.

Life is full of happiness and tears. And for Abbie, whatever comes her way, she just have accept it, be strong and have faith.

There are many kinds of music out there and so are life’s surprises, but with her values, experiences, and with the people who love and support her, Abbie believes that she can dance to the rhythm of life. ###


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Panglao bags model LGU Implementing Kalahi-CIDSS award

The Municipality of Panglao bagged the National Gapas Award 2018 as the Best LGU Implementing Kalahi-CIDSS, the award was received by Honorable Mayor Leonila P. Montero received the award on February 15, 2019 at the Land Bank of the Philippines Manila during the DSWD Panata Ko sa Bayan Awards Ceremony.

Honorable Leonila P. Montero, Mayor of the Local Government Unit of Panglao, Bohol, receives the 2019 PaNata Ko Sa Bayan Awards under the sub-category GAPAS Award: Model LGU Implementing Kalahi-CIDSS.

One of the many points why LGU Panglao got the award is their drive to give a true service to its constituents. The Municipality of Panglao consistently provides support to the identified needs of the barangays especially those who are not funded under Kalahi-CIDSS.  In the implementation of the Kalahi-CIDSS Program in the municipality, the Local Government Unit of Panglao has been improving its performance in every cycle especially in terms of the sub-project implementation. Not once has it gone beyond 180 days’ limit of completing the sub-project.

The LGU is also good in managing resources, from a total of Php 34,858,600.00 of Kalahi grants and local counterpart in 3 cycles they were able to utilize Php 34,633,111.14 or 99.35% of funds received and used up 30% or Php 9,943,046.65 of its total funding as payment for laborers working on its sub-project.

The Municipality of Panglao has been consistent in keeping its place at the top. In 2018 it also won 3 awards during the program yearly LGU Assessment and Awarding. It bagged the Best in Geo-Database Management, Database Management and Grievance Management awards.

The Gawad Paglilingkod Sambayanan or Gapas award is a sub-category of the Panata Ko sa Bayan Awards, this is given to the partners for their invaluable support to the department and to the program. This award is presented to the stakeholders and employees who have contributed to the empowering of communities and individuals in every DSWD Anniversary since 2010. ###


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