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Lotloton SLPA ventures in sari-sari store

Sa wala pa kami nag-abli sa among tindahan, giingnan nami sa mga tawo diri nga dili ra maabtan og tulo ka buwan among tindahan og mahagba ra kini (Before we opened our store, some people told us that our store would not even reach three months and would eventually close),” said Claudia Malanog, Lotloton Sustainable Livelihood Program Association (SLPA) President.

Lotloton SLP program participants proudly stand as owners of their Retailing and Merchandising Store.

Those are the harsh words hurled at the program participants of Lotloton SLPA while chasing to achieve their desired livelihood project, the sari-sari store.

Before the livelihood project was implemented in Brgy. Lotloton, Enrique Villanueva, Siquijor, most members used to do farming every day. Some worked as fishermen and laborers, and some members ventured into backyard gardening for them to sustain their family’s basic needs especially for their children who are attending school.

Admittedly, the farmers prayed for another source of income because farming alone is insufficient for their families’ needs.

In September 2016, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) introduced the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) to the community folks. The Provincial Coordinator Marilou Cortes and the Implementing Project Development Officer Arnel Casusi conducted the orientation about the program and helped them go through the process.

At the start of the implementation, some residents showed eagerness to be part of the livelihood program. They created a group of people with common interest and goal to establish the project and named it Lotloton Sustainable Livelihood Program Association (SLPA) Retailing and Merchandising Store.

Members’ active participation in the preparation of the group’s accreditation paid off. It only took them two (2) months to form the group with elected officers and by laws. The officers are Claudia Malanog, President; Antonio Aguinid, Vice President; Marcila Pagente, Secretary; Ruby Arapoc, Treasurer; and Luzviminda Domingues, Auditor. The association is composed of twenty-eight (28) members with twenty-three (23) females and five (5) males. Among the 28 members, only one (1) is non-Pantawid Pamilya grantee.

On November 28, 2016, the DSWD-SLP granted the amount of Php 325,791,000.00 for the SLPA’s livelihood project.

The members expressed their gratitude of having their own sari-sari store. “Sa una, wala mi lain giatubang kundi ang pagpama-ol lang. Karon, pinaagi sa tindahan nga gihatag sa DSWD SLP, aduna mi laing panginabuhian nga pwede namo saligan (Before, we only do farming. Now, because of the assistance given by DSWD-SLP to us, we have an additional source of income),” said Claudia.

Months after the members constructed the building to house their sari-sari store; attended some retailing business seminar conducted by the First Consolidated Bank-Larena branch; and processed the business permit and registration; the association opened the store on August 9, 2017. Some barangay and municipal officials including the Municipal Mayor Gerold Pal-ing witnessed this significant event.

The members take turns in rendering duty at the store. They are also monitored if they follow their policies like proper accounting of items and others. They also agreed not to allow credit yet as they are still starting the store operation.

Within eight months of their operation, the group was able to deposit Php 150,000.00 to their savings account. This means that their business is growing.

In June 2018, the members got their first profit sharing amounting to Php 5,000.00 each.

Kalipay nga walay ikabaylo ang among gibati tungod sa gihatag nga negosyo diri kanamo sa gobyerno pinaagi sa DSWD SLP. Kini among pagadumalaon og maayu (Priceless happiness is what we feel right now because of the livelihood given to us by the government through DSWD SLP. We will judiciously manage this business),” said Antonio. These words prove that criticisms could not hinder them in chasing their dreams when taken as a challenge by the group member to pursue their goal. ###


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4th Panaghiusa Festival put spotlight on various sectors

The story of a homeless youth, a senior citizen and a solo parent was put on spotlight during the opening salvo of the 4th Panaghiusa Festival of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII held on December 11, 2018 at the Ayala Center Cebu.

DSWD-7 employees including Assistant Regional Director for Operations Shalaine Marie Lucero showcase the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) in a fashion show at the Ayala Activity Center.

Johanna Heart Genon, whose family is a partner-beneficiary of the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT) shared her inspiring story in front of the audience.

Himuon nimong strength ang imung weakness, focus ra gyud sa imong goal ug huna-hunaa nga naa ra si God nagpaluyo nimu (Make your weakness as your strength, focus on your goal and always remember that God is always behind you),” uttered Johanna Heart. She is currently pursuing Civil Engineering course at the University of Cebu (UC) and one of the scholars of UC Chancellor Candice Gotianuy.

Mario Villafuerte, a senior citizen from Brgy. Kalubihan, Cebu City explained how the cash stipend from the social pension program for indigent senior citizens helps augment his basic needs.

Dako akong pasalamat kay ang mga tigulang gitagaan gibug-aton (I’m thankful that the elderlies are being valued),” expressed Mario during the live interview at the Ayala Activity Center.

Daisy Ostia, a solo parent and a Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) participant, said “Para nako kung unsay mga kalisdanan nga matagamtaman dili kini angayan surrenderan apan himuon kini nga oportunidad nga mahimong malig-on (For me, whatever challenges one encounters, it should not make one surrender but take it as an opportunity to become stronger)”.

Colorful dances from the Cebu Normal University (CNU) Kudyapi Folkloric Ensemble featuring various Philippine dances add spectacle to the event while the dancing grannies of the Goldies & Goodies from Brgy. Guadalupe, Cebu City showed their dancing prowess to the delight of the audience.

Creative and artistic headdresses promoting various DSWD programs and services were the centerpiece during the 4th Panaghiusa Festival parade.

Deniez Abregana presented again her winning piece under the Draw and Tell category during the recently concluded 2018 Regional Children’s Contest.

Prior to the opening salvo, DSWD-7 staff joined the festival parade that started from DSWD regional office going to Ayala Center Cebu. DSWD-7 staff also promoted their own programs and services by showing their own banners and creative headdresses in the major thoroughfares of Cebu City.

“In this festival, not only that we talked about highlighting products but this is also showing the impact of the programs of DSWD to the lives of our partner-beneficiaries and through their stories we will also learn their successes,” said DSWD Assistant Regional Director for Operations Shalaine Marie S. Lucero during the opening salvo.

The opening salvo ended with a SLP fashion show which showcased partner-beneficiaries’ livelihood products from Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental and Siquijor provinces like hablon, macramé, sinamay, raffia, fashion accessories, guitars, recycled products, nito basket, hand painted table cloth and placemats, pan bisaya and various souvenir items.

For the 2-day exhibit, the SLP partner-participants gained an accumulated gross sale of Php 106,625.00.

After the ceremonial ribbon cutting of SLP trade exhibit and information booth, a symposium entitled Embracing Knowledge Exchange was conducted in partnership with the Social Welfare Development Learning Network (SWDL Net) composed of various Civil Society Organizations (CSOs). ###


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DSWD 7 joins #ENDVAW culminating activity

Participants from different LGUs, NGOs, Inter-agency councils and International Ministries gathered as one in prayer to #ENDOSEC (End Online Sexual Exploitation of Children) on Thursday, December 6, at the Robinsons Galleria Cebu for the Visayas Prayer Gathering (VPG) 2018.

Regional Director Ma. Evelyn B. Macapobre urges everyone to join this fight against OSEC through prayers.

The VPG 2018 was a culminating activity for the annual celebration of 18-day campaign to end VAW (Violence against Women) which is pursuant to the Proclamation 1172 s. 2006 – Declaring November 25 to December 12 as the 18-Day Campaign to End Violence Against Women (VAW) with the theme “VAW-free community starts with me”.

“The violence now has become more complicated,” said Ma. Evelyn B. Macapobre, DSWD 7 regional director pertaining to the use of internet in sexual crimes. Taking some verse from the bible she added “According to Matthew 18:20, For where two or three gather in my name, truly it will be done”. “We are more than two here, dako gyud nig epekto ang atong gathering (this gathering will have a huge impact),” said Director Macapobre.

“Philippines is the global hotspot of this (OSEC) crime. We must be one in combating against OSEC,” said Mr. John Tanagho, Cebu field office director of International Justice Mission (IJM).

Aside from the directed prayers for the different agencies who took an active part in this campaign, praise and worship songs filled the area. Moreover, as a pledge of commitment, participants took part in the signing of the #ENDOSEC Commitment Boards.

The activity ended with a community dance to the “One Billion Rising” theme song of the campaign. ###


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DSWD 7 celebrates 4th Panaghiusa Festival

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII will stage the 4th Panaghiusa Festival at the Ayala Center Cebu on December 11-12, 2018.

Panaghiusa Festival was created four years ago to increase public awareness on the accomplishments and gains in the implementation of DSWD programs and services in region 7.

“The festival aims to showcase the positive impact of the programs in the lives of our partner-beneficiaries through their success stories and to empower them to become model and inspiration to others as well,” said Regional Director Ma. Evelyn Macapobre.

The 2-day event will be participated in by DSWD staff, guests from local government units (LGUs), partner national government agencies (NGAs), non-government organizations (NGOs), academe and media. It is also open to the general public.

The first day of the event will have a thanksgiving mass at the DSWD regional office to be followed by a ribbon cutting of trade exhibit of Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and information booth of DSWD featuring the centers and institutions and Knowledgement Management Fair at the Ayala Activity Center.

“I am inviting the public again to visit DSWD-7 information booths and buy SLP products as their way of supporting and helping our partner-beneficiaries improve their livelihood,” added Director Macapobre.

The product display will include home decors like native waste baskets, hand painted products like dress and shawl, products made from raffia, fashion accessories like necklace, bracelets, earrings, bags, belts, slippers, sandals and various souvenir items made of recycled materials.

In the afternoon of December 11, there will be a festival parade by DSWD-7 staff starting from the regional office going to Ayala Center Cebu. An opening salvo will be conducted after the parade.

“The opening salvo will feature partner-beneficiaries from various sectors who will share their inspiring stories on how they were able to rise above the difficulties in their lives and remain positive and resilient in ever changing times,” said Director Macapobre.

In the second day, Regional Director Ma. Evelyn Macapobre will deliver the State of the Region Address (SORA) to present the accomplishments of its various programs and services.

Other highlights of the festival will be the awarding of the 2018 Regional Search for Huwarang Pantawid Pamilya, Exemplary Pantawid Pamilya Children, Indigenous People (IP) Model Community and Kalahi-CIDSS Bayani Ka! winners. ###


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DSWD spearheads 2018 Regional Children’s Contest

The spirit of holiday season filled the air as the children of region 7 shared an early Christmas gifts of wits, talents and skills to the parents, day care workers, NGOs and LGUs in the 2018 Regional Children’s Contest on Wednesday, November 28 held at the Robinsons Galleria, Cebu City to culminate the 26th National Children’s Month (NCM) celebration.

“Children are vital part of our existence,” said Ms. Marion Concordia Saguisag, mall operations manager of Robinsons Galleria Cebu who allowed the free use of the venue.

Deniez Abregana representing Mandaue City clinches the first place in the Draw and Tell category through her moving description of her beautiful drawing that depicts the child and her natural environment.

DSWD 7 Regional Director Ma. Evelyn B. Macapobre encouraged parents to let the children freely express themselves not only on speaking but also through their talents. “Dili angay pugson ang mga bata kung unsa ang dili nila gusto (We should not force children on things they don’t like). This is the day of the children. Let us allow them to be children,” said Dir. Macapobre

Almost 200-day care kids from the different municipalities and cities of region 7 participated in the singing, draw and tell and folk dance categories.

In the singing category, Richlynn Rayne Bernardo of Danao City won the 1st place in her very soothing rendition of “Tomorrow”. Samantha Raganas from Talisay City got the 2nd place and Whane Matthew Sarigumba, of Carmen, Bohol took home the 3rd place.

In the Draw and Tell category, Deniez Abregana, representing Mandaue City captured the hearts of the audience with her innocent yet moving description of her beautiful drawing that depicts the child and her natural environment. Cyresha Gale Salim of San Jose, Negros Oriental and Keshia Abay of Trinidad, Bohol placed 2nd and 3rd respectively.

In the Folk dance category, the children of Cebu City bagged the first place with their Tinikling dance. They were followed by the 2nd placer, Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental with their Polka sa Plaza dance and Talisay City as the 3rd place winner who danced Jota Quirino.

All the winners went home with a customized, colorful medals; certificates; toys and goodies that cheered them up.

Moreover, kids were enthralled by the look-alikes of Ana and Elsa of Frozen who belted out the theme songs of the movie. Gella Vergara, the 2012 Regional Children’s Contest winner also entertained the audience with her singing prowess. Likewise, the children from different organizations showed their talents to everyone.

Other activities in line with this NCM’s celebration were the Parents-Children Dialogue on Nov. 22, Online Sexual Exploitation on Children (OSEC) campaign in the schools of Lapu-Lapu City and Cordova on Nov. 6-7, the Advocacy and Awareness Walk on Nov. 10, radio guestings and Kapihan sa Philippine Information Agency (PIA).

The Regional Children’s Contest is a yearly culminating activity for the National Children’s Month celebration. ###


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DSWD-7 celebrates National Children’s Month, holds Parents-Children Dialogue

As part of the lined-up activities prepared for the 26th National Children’s Month celebration, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII through the Regional Council for the Welfare of Children (RCWC) conducted a whole-day Parents-Children Dialogue on November 22, 2018 at the Golden Peak Hotel and Suites, Cebu City.

Two children raise their answers “Karapatang Mag-aral” and “Edukasyon” to the questions “What are the rights of the children?” in a short trivia game conducted during the Parents-Children Dialogue on November 22, 2018 at the Golden Peak Hotel and Suites, Cebu City.

The activity was participated by the parent and children representatives from different Local Government Units (LGUs) and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) in Cebu.

With this year’s National Children’s Month’s theme “Isulong: Tamang Pag-aaruga para sa lahat ng bata,” it is fitting that this parents-children dialogue is organized, in which positive parenting and discipline towards children was the significant focus.

Assistant Regional Director for Operations, Shalaine Marie S. Lucero in her welcome message said “Parents, discipline your children and they will never go wrong. Children, listen to your parents because no parent would want their children to be led into a crooked path.” ARDO Lucero also emphasized the importance of good relationship between parents and children in establishing a good family bond as it necessarily contributes to a rich and productive nation.

Two separate workshop with participating parents and children were facilitated by the RCWC staff and representatives from the World Vision Development Foundation Inc. Presentation of outputs followed thereafter, where children expressed their thoughts and feelings about the parenting styles applied by their parents, while parents on the other hand were able to clarify as well the parenting styles they applied towards their children.

One of the concerns tackled during the presentation of outputs was the importance of open communication between the parents and children in the family.

When asked how they would want to be disciplined in their home, one of the answers voiced by a child-participant was “It would be better if parents will explain calmly to their children that what we have done was wrong and correct us accordingly instead of immediately shouting at us.”

A parent participant, also expressed thoughts on how a child should be disciplined at home during the presentation of outputs. She said, “A child should be taught in a right approach on how to be good citizens in the community and we should also strengthen our teachings on good values towards them.”

Prior to the conclusion of the dialogue, recommendations for and commitment from both parents and children on reviving family values, improving familial practices and strengthening parent-child relationship were crucially considered. ###


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329 DSWD’s MCCT support services intervention funded

The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office VII (DSWD-7) funded a total of 329 support services intervention (SSI) through the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT).

This is equivalent to Php 119,927.670.68 that funded the identified projects based on the submitted and approved proposals of the beneficiaries

Some of these SSI projects are hog raising, cattle raising, communal garden and general merchandise.

A MCCT partner-beneficiary together with their harvests in Brgy. Taytay, Duero, Bohol.

These projects benefit a total of 12,559 MCCT partner-beneficiaries which are composed of three categories: home street families in Cebu City, Mandaue City and Lapu-Lapu City; indigenous peoples in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDA) and the families in need of special protection (FNSP) who were affected by Super Typhoon Yolanda and the 2013 Bohol earthquake.

One of the MCCT partner-beneficiaries is Roselyn Sedillo, 35 years old, from Brgy. Amio, Santa Catalina, Negros Oriental and a Tribung Bukidnon.

Nalipay ko nga naapil aning MCCT kay nakatabang kini sa pagpa-eskwela sa duha nako nga mga anak labi na nga ang akong bana magbunotay og lubi (I am happy to be part of MCCT because it helps in the education of our two children especially that my husband is just engaged in coconut husking),” said Roselyn in dialect.

Roselyn actively attends the monthly Family Development Session (FDS) and serves as one of the parent leaders in the barangay because of her leadership capabilities to lead other MCCT partner-beneficiaries.

Later, she became the President of their association and manages their general merchandise store.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) provided a free entrepreneurship training that helped them effectively manage their store.

According to Roselyn, she meticulously practices the tips that DOLE taught her and the rest of the members who operate their own personal store aside from the association store they have. Some of the tips she got were on how to arrange the items in the display store and how to entertain the customers.

Members of Tribung Bukidnon in Brgy. Amio, Santa Catalina, Negros Oriental listen to the entrepreneurship training conducted by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

Another group of MCCT partner-beneficiaries are the Taytay Eskaya Tribe Farmers Association (TAYETFA) of Brgy. Taytay, Duero, Bohol who established their own communal garden.

With the help from the Department of Agriculture (DA) and a Non-Government Organization (NGO) called KOPIA or Korea Program on International Agriculture, the association was able to successfully harvest vegetables like lettuce, chinese pechay, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and carrots last September 25, 2018.

The MCCT covers poor families who were not included in the regular Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps). It provides assistance to homeless street families, families in need of special protection and indigenous families, which are not limited to education and health grants, but also includes safe and responsive housing assistance with access to SSI for the improvement of their living conditions. ###


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DSWD 7 conducts Consultation-Dialogue on Listahanan

The National Household Targeting Office (NHTO) in coordination with the NHTU-FO7 conducted recently a Consultation-Dialogue with Association of Local Social Welfare and Development Officers (ALSWDOPI) on Listahanan and the DSWD Guidelines on Data Sharing in Cebu City.

Assistant Regional Director for Operations Shalaine Marie S. Lucero in her message inspires the participants to smile despite the challenges they have to face.

The two-day activity was attended by more than 230 members of ALSWDOPI from the different provinces of regions VI, VII and VIII.

The activity was held to facilitate discussions on the challenges faced by the local social workers during the Listahanan 1 and Listahanan 2. Furthermore, issues about data sharing and getting data information were discussed.

DSWD-7 Chief of Policy and Plans Division of DSWD-7, Mr. Graeme Ferdinand Armecin provided an overview on the Social Protection Framework. He emphasized the principles of Social protection that it should be a basic human right, transformative and inclusive. Its primary goal is to reduce poverty by 14% by the year 2022.

Regional Field Coordinator Hillton John Edrial discussed about Listahanan as a system of identifying who and where the poor are in the country to become potential beneficiaries of the DSWD’s programs and services.

During her welcome message, Ms. Shalaine Marie Lucero, DSWD-7 assistant regional director for operations, inspires the participants to smile despite the challenges a social worker has to face. She also encouraged the participants to address the problems they have to endure, so that we will come up with the resolution.

Ms. Julie Ann Arroyo, Project Development Officer III from Central Office talked about the protocol on Data Sharing as pursuant to RA 10173 or Data Privacy Act of 2012. There are requirements that needs to be complied before the requested data will be given. Also, data to be shared shall be used for social protection and it will be monitored.

One of the requirements mentioned in requesting for data is the designation of Data Protection Officer (DPO) that will check and ensure that requesting LGUs are compliant to the Central Office.

The participants were given the opportunity to air out their concerns which were immediately answered by the organizing staff. Also, forms were given to those who still have questions and recommendations and were submitted to the staff.

The result of this consultation – dialogue will form part in the enhancement of DSWD’s policy on Data sharing and improving Listahanan 3 guidelines. ###


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