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DSWD-7 beneficiaries, partners join Panaghiusa Festival

Some beneficiaries and partners of the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office VII (DSWD-7) joined the 5th Panaghiusa Festival and spoke about how they have been benefited by its programs and services during the opening salvo of the festival held on October 22, 2019 at the Activity Center of Ayala Center Cebu.

Jason Sanchez shared his inspiring story as an adoptive parent to the audience.

“If God will not give you a child (your own child), you can have the opportunity to share your love to other child. It is a very nice feeling that we were able to adopt a child as we have been praying for a child,” said Jason.

Mr. Jason K. Sanchez, an adoptive parent, shares his experience in rearing an adopted child.

He further shared that they offered a prayer to the Señor Sto. Nino de Cebu during the Sinulog on 2016 and in November of the same year they were blessed with a child named Francheska whom they adopted with the help of DSWD-7.

“I love you even though I am not your biological dad but I love you more than anything else,” expressed Jason when asked for his message to Francheska during the live interview at the Ayala Activity Center.

Albert Bompat, Brgy. Captain of Bil-isan, Panglao in Bohol, enthusiastically expressed how their family donated a lot for the construction of a Kalahi-CIDSS high school building in their community.

Sangko sa langit nga pasalamat nga na-realize ang high school building sa among barangay (Greatly thankful to God that we were able to realize the high school building in our barangay),” expressed Albert, one of the twelve siblings who agreed to donate the 5,000 square meter lot.

Kabilin ni sa among amahan mao nga nakapangalan sa iyaha ang eskwelahan ang Felix E. Bompat High School ug mag-ani kini pipila ka mga kabataan nga mapahuman nato og high school (We inherited the donated lot from our father that is why the school is named after him, Felix E. Bompat High School which will enable more youths to graduate high school),” said Albert.

Tommy Daomani, a former Pantawid Pamilya partner-beneficiary, shares his desire to empower his fellow Sama Bajau. He is a graduate of Social Work and recently passed the board exam.

Gusto nako maipakita sa ubang tawo nga aduna pud mi mga pangandoy nga gustong kab-oton (I want to show to other people that we also have our dreams that we want to achieve),” said Tommy.

The DSWD-7 performing arts ensemble composed of its workers performed an energetic opening number while the Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC II) composed of PWD active-trainees showcased their angelic voices and performed two folk songs.

DSWD-7 Regional Director Rebecca Geamala leads the ribbon-cutting together with the members from the Social Welfare Development Learning Network (SWDL Net).

The Sama-Bajau women of Brgy. Mambaling, Cebu City also performed a tribal dance. They are partner-beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.

Regil Alby Gador presented again her original song composition entitled “Paglaom sa Pag-ampon.” She is the first placer of the ‘Duyog sa Paghigugma’ Songwriting Competition held in February 2019 during the Adoption Consciousness Week Celebration of the Department.

Jessyl Hyacinth Hernandez, 8 years old, rendered a Cebuano song. She is a student of Tunga Elementary School, a Kalahi-CIDSS subproject in Moalboal, Cebu.

Prior to the opening salvo, DSWD-7 staff joined the festival parade that started from DSWD regional office and ended at Ayala Center Cebu. DSWD-7 staff also promoted their own programs and services by showing their own Panaghiusa t-shirt design in the major thoroughfares of Cebu City.

The opening salvo ended with a fashion show of different SLP livelihood products made by partner-beneficiaries from Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental and Siquijor provinces like nito basket, guitar, shell craft, raffia table top, macramé bags, pandan bags, bags made from recycled materials and other souvenir items.

For the 2-day exhibit, the SLP partner-participants gained an accumulated gross sale of Php 144,000.00.

As part of the Panaghiusa Festival, a symposium entitled Edukar OSEC Prevention Advocacy Project was also held at Ayala Center Cebu in partnership with the Social Welfare Development Learning Network (SWDL Net) composed of various Civil Society Organizations (CSOs). The activity was participated in by social work students from various schools like University of Cebu, University of Southern Philippines and St. Theresa’s College.

DSWD-7 employees showcase the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) products in a fashion show at the Ayala Activity Center during the opening salvo of the 5th Panaghiusa Festival.

“This festival is a manifestation of our convergence efforts in addressing social concerns not only of DSWD but also with other partner stakeholders. I am delighted that we have this activity that we are doing our best to ensure that our less fortunate brothers and sisters are being protected and served by the different agencies lead by the DSWD,” said DSWD-7 Regional Director Rebecca Geamala. ###


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DSWD-7 warns public on 4Ps listing

The Department of Social Welfare and Development in Central Visayas warns the public of the alleged ongoing house-to-house listing of applicants for membership of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) in the province of Bohol specifically in the towns of Carmen, Anda and Garcia Hernandez conducted by some individuals who are not connected with the agency.

“Our office has received reports from our field staff about this incident and we encourage the public to be vigilant and to report to the nearest City or Municipal Action Team Office of DSWD-7,” announced Regional Director Rebecca Geamala.

“We also inform the public that DSWD is not also collecting any fee from individuals to become a Pantawid beneficiary,” Geamala added.

The Pantawid beneficiaries are objectively selected through the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction, also known as Listahanan, which is based from an assessment of the physical structure of their houses, the number of rooms and occupants, their access to running water and other factors affecting their living conditions.

“Even if the household was already assessed by the Listahanan enumerator, it does not mean that it will automatically become a beneficiary of Pantawid or any government program,” Director Geamala emphasized.

All collected information from the household will go through a process using a scientific method called Proxy Means Test or PMT. The PMT is a statistical model that estimates the income of household based on the variables included in the family assessment form.

Households with estimated incomes that are equal to and above the latest provincial poverty thresholds will be considered non-poor and those with estimated incomes falling below the poverty thresholds will be considered poor.

“Once the household is identified as poor, they will become potential beneficiaries for various social protection programs of the government like the 4Ps. However, their inclusion in the programs still depends on the programs qualifications or eligibility criteria,” Geamala stressed.

Aside from being identified as poor from Listahanan, a Pantawid partner beneficiary must have children aged 0-18 or have a pregnant member at the time of the assessment and must be willing and able to comply with the conditions of the program as part of their co-responsibilities. ###


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DSWD-7 to stage 5th Panaghiusa Festival

On its 5th year, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII will once again stage the Panaghiusa Festival at the Ayala Center Cebu on October 22-23, 2019.

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

The festival further aims to showcase the positive impact of the programs in the lives of its partner-beneficiaries through their success stories and to empower them to become model and inspiration to others as well.

The festival will have its two-day trade exhibit of Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and DSWD information booth at the Ayala Activity Center.

The product display will feature products from the different provinces in the region which include house décors, key holders, sling bags, back packs from Bohol; shell craft, flower base, coco baskets, fashion accessories, macramme products, hand bags made of recycled items from Cebu; nito decorations and pandan bags from Negros Oriental and fashion accessories from Siquijor.

In the afternoon of October 22, there will be a Panaghiusa festival parade starting from the regional office going to Ayala Center Cebu. An opening salvo will be conducted after the parade.

In the second day, Regional Director Rebecca P. Geamala will deliver the State of the Region Address (SORA) to present the accomplishments of DSWD-7’s various programs and services.

Other highlights of the festival will be the awarding of the 2019 Regional Search for Huwarang Pantawid Pamilya, Exemplary Pantawid Pamilya Children, Indigenous People (IP) Model Community, Pantawid Pamilya Best Focal Persons, SLP Sulong Bayanihan and Kalahi-CIDSS Bayani Ka! winners. ###


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DSWD-7 celebrates National Indigenous Peoples Month, holds IP Summit

In commemoration of this year’s National Indigenous Peoples Month, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII once again conducted an Indigenous People (IP) Summit, participated in by the different IP groups in region 7.

Decina Nida Salingay, chieftain of the Eskaya Tribe in Candijay, Bohol provides a brief history about their tribe during the Indigenous Peoples Summit held by the DSWD-7.

The Eskaya Tribe in Candijay, Bohol; Bajau Community in Dauis, Bohol; Magahat Tribe in Basay, Negros Oriental; Tribu Bukidnon in Ayungon, Negros Oriental; and the Sama Bajau in Cebu City, Cebu who participated in the activity are among the IP groups covered under the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program of the DSWD.

The two-day IP summit aims to recognize the Indigenous Cultural Communities/Indigenous People who preserve Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices, demonstrate positive traditional tribal Filipino culture and build affirmative influence in the cultural community where they are inherent in.

On the first day of the IP summit, the participating IP groups performed their respective tribal dances during the Monday convocation held at the field office.

During the activity, participants were discussed with the basic concept of gender sensitivity and the means of addressing possible gender-based violence and other gender related issues that may be faced by both men and women of the different tribal groups that might lead to non-compliance to the Pantawid Program conditions.

Preparing a catch up plan to address program issues and concern and developing response/commitment from the partners in the next year’s program implementation were also part of the workshop in the activity.

Also present during the summit were representatives from the different partner stakeholders of the department such as the Department of Health (DOH), Department of Agriculture (DA), PhilHealth, National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) Cebu Provincial Office, and the Badjao Integrated Development Program of the Presentation Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

On the second day of the summit, two IP groups were declared as model IP Community for their responsible adherence to the Pantawid program conditions and their excellent performance in developing their communities through and in partnership with the different stakeholders of the program.

The two Model IP Community are the Eskaya Tribe of Candijay, Bohol and the Sama Bajau of Cebu City, Cebu. ###


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DSWD-7’s AVRC II commemorates 45th year

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) -7’s Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC) II recently celebrated its 45th foundation day through gathering of its partner stakeholders, PWD graduates, current trainees and staff.

The Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC) II Chorale which consisted the PWD trainees, the homegrown talents of the center, serenades the guests of the 45th Foundation Day celebration.

During the short program held, Mr. Joseph G. Jumantoc, former AVCR orthopedically-impaired trainee and is now the president of the Regional Federation of PWDs, recounted his wonderful experience in AVRC and shared how the center has helped him become a competent individual.

“Through AVRC, I’ve mastered the three major skills: technical, vocational, and leadership, which up to now I get to apply wherever I go.

I am thankful to DSWD, as well as to its partners, who helped in reducing the unemployment rate of persons with disability,” said Jumantoc.

To recognize the significant contribution of the center’s partners, the department’s AVRC II awarded plaques and tokens of appreciation to the different national government agencies, non-government organizations, civil society organizations, and foundations who have consistently shown active commitment to help the center in looking after the welfare of the persons with disabilities in the community.

DSWD-7 Assistant Regional Director for Operations Shalaine Marie S. Lucero in her message during the program, encouraged the guests and attendees of the celebration to let their friends or any PWDs they know to visit the field office’s training center and enroll in technical and vocational courses. She also shared that AVRC II faculty and staff are all out in ensuring that they boost enough the confidence of the trainees before they graduate.

“We continue to expand our horizon. Anyone you know who are PWDs, encourage them to come here because our training facilities offer opportunities. Our staff (in AVRC) strive to help our trainees develop enough self-confidence as they leave the center after graduation,” said Ms. Lucero.

The trainees of the center also showcased their talents by performing song numbers to entertain the guests of the foundation day celebration.

The Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC) II is a non-residential institution of the DSWD that provides enabling environment for the Persons with Disability (PWDs) and other special groups in honing and training them to acquire skills and competencies and be deployed in a decent career. ###


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DSWD-7 continues advocacy on solo parents welfare

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD-7) has continued its advocacy on solo parents welfare to cater more solo parents in Central Visayas.

Daisy Lor, DSWD-7 focal person on family, explained to the public through the weekly Kapihan sa  PIA, which is broadcast live over DYMR-Radyo Pilipinas and telecast over Skycable Channel 53 the provisions of the Solo Parent’s Welfare Act or RA 8972 to inform them about the law and to also encourage the national agencies and the local government units to strengthen the implementation of the law and continue providing services for the welfare and protection of the solo parents.

Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) FO VII focal person on family, Ms. Daisy C. Lor (in purple blouse) talks about the Solo Parent Law, with Mr. Kevin Rodriguez the assistant regional director of NACPHIL and ERPAT Regional Officer.

“The act provides benefits and privileges to solo parents and their children. Its primary objective is to give solo parents the chance to rebuild themselves,” said Lor.

Under this act, this solo parents are given comprehensive social development and welfare services which include: livelihood development services, counseling services, parent effectiveness services, and critical incidence stress debriefing.

Moreover, educational benefits are also offered under this act wherein solo parents and their children can avail of scholarship programs from the Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on higher Education (CHED) and from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

They are also entitled to a seven-working day parental leave once they have already rendered at least one year of service.

Lor explained that a solo parent is any individual who falls under the following categories: 1) a woman who gives birth as a result of rape or crimes against chastity, provided that the mother keeps and raises the child, 2) a parent who is left alone with the responsibility of parenthood due to death, spouse is detained or is serving sentence for criminal conviction for at least one (1) year, physical or mental incapacity of spouse certified by a public medical practitioner, legal separation or de facto separation from spouse for at least one (1) year as long as he/she is entrusted with the custody of the children, declaration of nullity or annulment of marriage as decreed by a court or by a church as long as he/she  is entrusted with the custody of the children, 3) unmarried mother/father who has preferred to keep and rear her/his child/children instead of having others care for them or give them up to a welfare institution, 4) any other person who solely provides parental care and support to a child or children, 5) any family member who assumes the responsibility of head of family as a result of the death, abandonment, disappearance or prolonged absence of the parents or solo parent.

Meanwhile, Lor encouraged those who want to avail of the services and benefits under this act to visit their respective city or municipal social welfare and development office for application, assessment, other inquiries and issuance of solo parent ID.

Based on the latest Listahanan data of DSWD-7, Central Visayas has a total of 68,667 solo parents of which, 17,782 are males and 50,885 are females.

Central Visayas includes the provinces of Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental and Siquijor. ###


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Sickly and fragile social pensioners not required to attend payout

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reiterates that beneficiaries of the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens who are sickly, frail, fragile, with disability are not required to personally claim their stipend during payout to avoid untoward incidents that may be detrimental to their well-being.

According to the DSWD Omnibus Guidelines in the Implementation of the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens, the nearest relatives of the beneficiaries can claim the stipend provided that they bring with them an authorization letter from the social pensioner and their identification cards as authorized representatives during the payout. Aside from the actual payout, the stipend can also be given to the social pensioners through door-to-door delivery scheme.

DSWD made this reiteration following an incident in Catigbian, Bohol, where a social pensioner passed awayduring a payout on September 26, 2019.

The Department, through Field Office VII, expresses its condolences to the bereaved family and is already coordinating with the local government unit (LGU) for the provision of appropriate assistance.

The Department pointed out that before a payout is conducted, concerned DSWD-Field Office coordinates with the host LGU for necessary preparations such as the provision of well-ventilated venue that can protect the senior citizens from heat and rain; availability of seats and drinking water for all beneficiaries; presence of police officer/tanod for security, peace and order; and presence of medical staff and ambulance in case of emergencies.

DSWD recognizes that working closely with LGUs will lead to the efficient implementation of the Social Pension program. ###


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DSWD-7 provides program updates during AGIO-7 and CAOCAMPIO fora

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)–7 through its Social Marketing Unit (SMU), shared some updates of its programs and services in two separate occasions-the Association of Government Information Officers (AGIO) region 7 and Cebu Association of City and Municipal Information Officers (CAOCAMPIO) fora.

Planning Officer III Anthony G. Arsenal presents the accomplishments of programs and services implemented by the DSWD-7.

The sharing of program updates to the different participating national government agencies were done by Regional Information Officer Leah T. Quintana, Pantawid Information Officer Kerwin R. Macopia and Planning Officer III Anthony G. Arsenal.

During the activity with AGIO-7 member agencies, Mr. Macopia talked about the Republic Act 11310 or the Institutionalization of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program while Ms. Quintana discussed about Adoption and the salient features of Republic Act 11222, an act allowing the Rectification of Simulated Birth Records and Prescribing Administrative Adoption Proceedings for the Purpose during the AGIO-7 forum/meeting.

During the forum with Cebu Association of City and Municipal Public Information Officers (CAOCAMPIO), DSWD-7 Planning Officer III Mr. Anthony G. Arsenal presented the accomplishments of the Field Office from January to September, 2019.

Moreover, Regional Information Officer Leah T. Quintana discussed to CAOCAMPIO members the DSWD Branding and the Salient Features of the Republic Act (RA) 11222.

In both fora, Ms. Quintana encouraged the members of AGIO-7 and CAOCAMPIO to share the information about DSWD’s different program and services to their beneficiaries, community residents, townsfolk or officemates for them to be aware and to be able to avail of the government’s programs and services. ###


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