DSWD, partners promote better programs, services for IPs

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Participants during the SWD forum assess various programs and services for the indigenous peoples.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through its Field Office IV-A, together with local government units (LGUs) and non-government organizations (NGOs) implementing programs and services for the indigenous peoples (IPs), continuously promotes strengthened programs and services for the improved living condition of the IPs.

During the recently held Social Welfare and Development Forum in Alabang, Muntinlupa City, at least 30 partners assessed their experiences and challenges in the implementation of different programs and services directed to the IPs this year.

In the CALABARZON Region, IP communities include Dumagat, Aeta and Sama-Bajau, majority are in the provinces of Rizal, Quezon and Batangas.

Based on the discussions during the forum, initiatives such as birth registrations, medical missions, livelihood assistance and scholarships for alternative learning system are among the projects that best responded to the needs of the IPs.

To further strengthen these initiatives, the participants committed to regularly coordinate with the concerned agencies particularly the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples (NCIP). They have also asked the assistance of the DSWD to continuously provide trainings and inputs on managing and evaluating programs and services.

“We look forward for more trainings and orientation on IP culture sensitivity so we can effectively implement and sustain our programs and services for them,” said Choleta Calzado, an LGU representative from Infanta in Quezon Province.

During the forum, the DSWD Field Office IV-A presented its programs and services directed to the sector and called for the continuous support of the LGUs and NGOs.

Among these programs are the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT) where IP families receive cash grants for their educational and health needs, considering that they follow the program’s conditions which include 85% monthly school attendance of children, regular health check-ups and regular attendance to monthly Family Development Sessions.

Other programs presented include the Sustainable Livelihood Program for livelihood and employment assistance, the Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) for the improvement of delivery of social services in tribal communities and the Comprehensive Program for Sama-Bajau that aims to provide beneficiaries with permanent shelter, education, livelihood and other support services carried out by partner LGUs and NGOs.

Nulhidaya Biri Bayani, a Sama-Bajau from Batangas City in Batangas Province and a beneficiary of the comprehensive program and MCCT, shared her gratitude and experiences on the assistance she received from the DSWD.

“Dati, pakalat-kalat lang kami sa daan at nanlilimos. Ramdam namin na takot ang mga tao sa amin. Pero sa mga tulong ng DSWD, marami kaming natutunan at nagkaroon kami ng mas maayos na pagkakakitaan. Natuto kaming makisalamuha at ramdam namin na tanggap kami sa lipunan,” shared Nulhidaya during the forum.#

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DSWD seeks continuous support from civil society organizations

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Executive Director Joselito Rodriguez of E. Zobel Foundation shares their organization’s engagement with the DSWD, particularly the beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program in Calatagan, Batangas Province.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) continuously seeks partnership with civil society organizations (CSOs) towards improving the living condition of its beneficiaries.

In a recently conducted Advocacy cum Consultation Forum with CSOs in Sta. Cruz, Laguna Province, the DSWD advocated for the CSOs’ possible engagement with the agency, particularly in helping the DSWD achieve its goals for its beneficiaries.

According to Ms. Virgie Arenasa, head of the Standards Unit of the DSWD Field Office IV-A, the role of the CSOs is important in providing more opportunities to the beneficiaries of the different DSWD programs and services. She said that the CSOs can engage in providing livelihood opportunities and skills training for beneficiaries, conducting Family Development Sessions (FDS) for Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiaries and providing services to clients in various centers and institutions.

Executive Director Joselito Rodriguez of the E. Zobel Foundation, one of the active CSO partners of the DSWD IV-A, shared that their engagement with the agency is a means to help the beneficiaries, particularly on the gaps on health, education and livelihood.

The E. Zobel Foundation has partnered with the DSWD last 2014 and now provides various services such as livelihood and capacity building activities to help improve the economic condition of the beneficiaries in Calatagan, Batangas Province.

Just recently, they have provided a basic sewing training and a startup sewing machine under their Grassroot Livelihood Project to 19 Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries in the said town.

Dir. Rodriguez encouraged other CSOs to help the DSWD particularly in the provision of livelihood opportunities to the program beneficiaries.

Meanwhile, Arenasa called for the continuous support of current CSO partners and encouraged other organizations to identify possible areas of partnership based on their resources and capacities.

Besides engaging in the provision of services to the beneficiaries, the CSOs can also engage in ensuring transparency in the planning and implementation of DSWD projects particularly on the use of public funds.

To date, there are 22 active CSO partners engaging in various programs and services of the DSWD. Majority of this number engages in the conduct of the monthly FDS for the parent-beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilya program.# with reports from MADiaz & HMaligaya

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DSWD beneficiaries celebrate positive ‘change’ in their lives

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Pantawid Pamilya and SLP beneficiaries showcase their different livelihood products in the Paskujuan 2015 last November 29, 2015 in Pacific Mall, Lucena City

More than 1,000 beneficiaries of the three core poverty alleviation programs of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) from all over the CALABARZON Region celebrated the change in their lives during the recently concluded Paskujuan 2015 held in Pacific Mall, Lucena City.

With the theme “Sama-sama sa landas ng pag-unlad,” the said activity gathered beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and community volunteers of the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS).

During the Paskujuan, various activities were conducted including a unity walk, a bazaar showcasing the products of Pantawid Pamilya and SLP beneficiaries, a discussion with Kalahi-CIDSS volunteers and awarding of volunteers, beneficiaries and partners in the implementation of the said programs.

According to Dir. Annie E. Mendoza, Asst. Regional Director for Operations of the DSWD Field Office IV-A, the Paskujuan 2015 is a celebration of the feat of the beneficiaries of the different programs of the DSWD signifying that they are doing something to improve their living condition.

“Pinapatunayan natin dito na hindi tamad ang mga benepisyaryo ng mga programa ng pamahalaan. Ang DSWD ay gumagabay lamang pero lahat kayo ay nagsusumikap para magkaroon ng pagbabago ang inyong mga pamilya at ang inyong mga komunidad,” shared Dir. Mendoza in her message to all the participants of the Paskujuan 2015.

A showcase of ‘products’ of beneficiaries

Selected beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilya and SLP showcased their livelihood products in a bazaar. Products include handicrafts, processed foods such as longganisa and tocino, homemade delicacies such as coco jam, peanut butter, ube, coffee and candies among others.

“Ang mga produkto na tinitinda ng ating mga benepisyaryo ay patunay lamang na may ginagawa ang bawat isa para magkaroon ng dagdag kita at matulungan ang kani-kanilang mga pamilya para makapaghanap-buhay,” shared Dir. Mendoza.

According to Estrella Atienza, a Pantawid and SLP beneficiary from San Francisco in Quezon Province who showcased their ube products in the bazaar, she is grateful that through her business, she is able to help her family.

From a housewife, Atienza is now able to help with the family’s expenses through buying and selling crops in their town and selling various ube products in the market.

“Sa tulong ng DSWD, natuto akong maghanapbuhay. Nagkaroon kami ng mga seminars at ang dating maliit na taong katulad ko ay may tindahan na ng tricycle spare parts kasama ang iba pang mga benepisyaryo ng programa,” shared Benito Miel, an SLP beneficiary from Lucban, Quezon.

In the implementation of the Pantawid Pamilya program, the DSWD provides various opportunities to beneficiaries to help improve their living condition. The SLP, which is implemented alongside Pantawid Pamilya, provides skills training to program participants to help them start a micro-enterprise or lead them to gainful employment.

‘Sama-sama sa landas ng pag-unlad’

Another highlight of the Paskujuan 2015 is the discussion with the beneficiaries, majority of them are community volunteers of the Kalahi-CIDSS from all 20 municipalities implementing the program in Quezon Province.

During the focused group discussions, the beneficiaries highlighted the change in their families and communities brought by the different programs of the Department.

“Dahil sa tulong ng Kalahi-CIDSS, nagkaroon kami ng boses. Kaya na naming sumigaw, kaya na naming sabihin kung ano ang aming mga pangangailangan para matulungang umunlad ang ating komunidad,” shared Angelito Panol, a Kalahi-CIDSS volunteer from Plaridel, Quezon Province.

Margarita Medina, a Pantawid Pamilya beneficiary from Laurel, Batangas, thanked the program for opening her eyes to work for the future of her children.

“Proud po akong ibahagi sa iba kung bakit kami umunlad. Natutunan kong magtipid at mag-ipon para sa pamilya ko. Hinding-hindi na mararanasan ng mga anak ko ang hirap na dinanas namin noon,” Medina shared.

Further, during the unity walk, which served as the opening activity of the Paskujuan 2015, the program participants shouted their commitment towards working together to continuously experience a positive change in their lives.

“Ako, kami, tayo, may magagawa para sa pagbabago,” shouted the beneficiaries in unison during the walk.

During the Paskujuan, the DSWD Field Office IV-A also awarded the regional winners of the Kalahi-CIDSS’ Bayani Ka! Awards and Pantawid Pamilya’s Search for Best Parent Groups 2015. Program partners of the SLP were also recognized for their support in the implementation of the program, particularly in helping the Department in meeting its goal of improving the well-being of the beneficiaries.#

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World Bank: “Kalahi-CIDSS grant has been spent well”

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PROUD WITH THEIR PROJECT. Nestor Marabe, the head of community volunteers in Brgy. Callejon in San Antonio in Quezon Province, shares to DSWD Secretary Corazon “Dinky” Juliano-Soliman and World Bank officials how the farm-to-market road project they implemented eases the transportation of goods to the market and provides safer travel for students going to school.


Officials from the World Bank (WB) are confident that the grant provided to the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) program was spent well after hearing stories of community volunteers on how they worked together in improving their communities.

They have heard these stories during their visit in the villages implementing the Kalahi-CIDSS program in the town of San Antonio in Quezon Province last November 5, 2015.

According to DSWD Secretary Corazon “Dinky” Juliano-Soliman, the said visit aimed to let the WB officials directly see the impact of the program to the local communities.

“These are the stories behind the numbers and figures that we usually see in the reports. The stories also demonstrate if our main objective is being met, which is to empower the people to work for change,” said Sec. Soliman.

The Kalahi-CIDSS is a poverty reduction program of the DSWD that aims to empower ordinary citizens to engage in the local development process by identifying and implementing need-responsive projects for their communities.

The WB, one of the development partners of the Kalahi-CIDSS, has allocated PhP115.36 Million grant for the implementation of 197 sub-projects this 2015 in Quezon Province alone. Projects include farm-to-market roads, health centers, school buildings, water system, and electrification among others.

The stories of community volunteers

Judilyn Encomio, a community volunteer from Brgy. San Jose in the said town, shared the importance of voicing out opinions and telling what the community really needs.

Their community decided to implement a community center sub-project worth PhP1.57 Million. The said project can also be used as evacuation center in times of disasters.

“Sa dami ng bagyong nagdaan, wala kaming ligtas na lugar na napupuntahan. Ito ang kailangan namin at binigay ko ang opinyon ko. Sa Kalahi-CIDSS, naramdaman kong mahalaga ang boses ko. At heto na nga, napakinggan ako,” said Encomio.

On the other hand, Nestor Marabe from Brgy. Callejon shared that participation is their key for successfully implementing their farm-to-market road with spillway sub-project. By working together, he said that they will soon finish concreting their village road and constructing the spillway, which costs PhP1.89 Million.

“Mas madali na naming madadala ang produkto namin sa sentro dahil hindi na magiging maputik ang daan kapag umulan. Makakapasok na rin nang ligtas ang mga bata sa school,” said Marabe.

Effective implementation

According to Antonio Henrique Pinherio Silveria, WB Executive Director, these stories of residents are enough proof that the community-driven principle of the program is already instilled to the local people.

On the other hand, WB Executive Director for United States Matthew McGuirre said that they have learned a lot from the local people which they can use for coming up with recommendation on other programs they support and other future studies.

“We now know first-hand how the grant provided to the Kalahi-CIDSS program was utilized for and by the communities. Hearing their success stories is enough inspiration for us to work more for the people,” said McGuirre. #

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Going beyond the usual–A woman’s discovery of what she can do for her community

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WORKING TOGETHER. Miraflor Pielago does not mind the heat of the sun as she helps laborers in the construction of their multi-purpose hall project. Through DSWD’s Kalahi-CIDSS program, she learned that every task can be successfully completed as long as it is done together.

Like most women who have chores in the morning, Miraflor Pielago gathers her tools and prepares for the day’s work. However, unlike most women who work with clothes and soap doing laundry, she works with construction tools helping with the construction of their barangay’s multi-purpose hall.

“Sa halip na ang alam ko lang ay maglaba, natuto ako ng iba pang bagay–mga bagay na kadalasang ginagawa ng mga lalaki, pero kayang-kaya rin pala ng mga babae,” said Miraflor, 56.

Miraflor is a resident of Brgy. San Vicente in General Luna, Quezon Province. She volunteers for the improvement of their barangay’s multi-purpose hall under the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) program.

The Kalahi-CIDSS is a poverty reduction program of the DSWD that involves the citizens in the local development process of their communities from the planning, implementation, and monitoring of their need-responsive projects.

According to Miraflor, their multi-purpose hall is just one of the many things that Kalahi-CIDSS has brought to their community. More than this structure, the program has educated and engaged the residents in the implementation process. This made her and the rest of the villagers feel that their voices and participation have value in their community’s development.

Volunteer at heart

Miraflor lives with her husband Artemio, 65, who works as an on-call coconut and banana farmer and her granddaughter Maria Angelica, 16. They have four children, with families of their own now, who provide them monthly allowances to support for their daily needs.

Aside from doing daily household chores and attending the needs of the family, Miraflor volunteers in their community chapel for two years now where they provide health and spiritual care to malnourished children by conducting monthly home visits and feeding programs.

“Hindi ako sanay ng nasa bahay lang. Mas maligaya ako na nasa labas ako at tumutulong sa aking mga ka-baranggay,” Miraflor said.

Thus, when she learned about the Kalahi-CIDSS program that started in their barangay in 2014, she did not hesitate to volunteer.

“Naging interesado agad ako dahil gusto kong malaman ang iba pang paraan para makatulong sa mga tao. Ang dami kong natutunan sa Kalahi at mas naging malawak pa ang nagagawa ko para sa barangay,” she added.

Beyond the usual

In the implementation of the Kalahi-CIDSS multi-purpose hall, Miraflor was assigned as the bookkeeper. She admits that she had little knowledge about bookkeeping but through the trainings and seminars provided to them, she managed to perform her task well.

During the project’s construction, Miraflor also went beyond her tasks as a bookkeeper. She learned to mix cement and fasten steel bars from other laborers and later helped them to hasten the task.

“Walang magiging mahirap na gawain basta’t sama-sama sa paggawa. P’wede namang tumulong kahit babae o lalaki dahil ang mahalaga, mapapabilis ang paggawa ng trabaho,” she added.

Seeing her efforts and of the community

As of October 2015, their multi-purpose hall is nearly finished and will be completed before the year ends.

By then, Miraflor happily shares that they will finally have a permanent place to hold community activities and an evacuation center in times of disasters.

“Ang sarap makita na malapit nang mabuo ang project namin. Pakiramdam ko na may pakinabang ako sa baranggay dahil isa ako sa mga gumawa nito,” Miraflor said.

For Miraflor, her experience with Kalahi-CIDSS has taught her to go beyond the usual things she does as a woman. Today, she sees herself as a community member who can bring change in their community.#

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Quezon residents analyze community situation, start new Kalahi-CIDSS cycle


I AM INVOLVED IN THE PROCESS. Janetha Jaen, a resident of Brgy. Poblacion I in General Luna in Quezon Province, discusses the common problems in their barangay during the Participatory Situational Analysis workshop conducted under the DSWD’s Kalahi-CIDSS program. According to her, she greatly appreciates this process of involving community residents like her towards the development of their barangay.

Residents of 15 municipalities in Quezon Province are being involved in the analysis of their community’s situation and identification of actions to address the problems at the barangay level. This is through a Participatory Situational Analysis (PSA) workshop conducted under the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) program.

The PSA is part of the first stage of the implementation cycle of the Kalahi-CIDSS program where local
residents identify community projects based on their determined problems and needs.

The municipalities of Agdangan, Alabat, Buenavista, Burdeos, Catanauan, General Luna, Macalelon, Perez, Quezon, San Andres, San Antonio, Unisan, and Tagkawayan are doing the said workshop as part of the second cycle of implementation of the Kalahi-CIDSS program, which began last August. On the other hand, the towns of Padre Burgos and Pitogo are also doing the same activity for their first cycle of Kalahi-CIDSS implementation, which also started last August.

In the conduct of the PSA, each sitio in the barangay is represented by three residents. They do focus group discussions to understand and identify the needs of their community and verify these by conducting home visits and interviews among the residents in the barangay.

After which, they identify possible solutions in a form of community projects or barangay programs and activities. They put these into a Barangay Action Plan for endorsement to their barangay council.

The results of the PSA will also be presented in a barangay assembly where the residents will agree on the best project to be prioritized and proposed for funding under the Kalahi-CIDSS program. A group of volunteers will also be nominated to take charge in the preparation of requirements for their proposed project.

Janetha Jaen from Brgy. Poblacion 1 in General Luna, Quezon Province said that she was able to understand how to effectively plan for a community project that will best address the people’s needs. In their case, they saw the need to resolve the flooding problem in their barangay to prevent their road from being destroyed and avoid the spread of sickness.

“Masaya po na naisasama kami sa mga ganitong pagpaplano dahil nakakatulong kami sa pagpapaunlad ng aming komunidad,” said Jaen.

The Kalahi-CIDSS is a poverty reduction program of the DSWD that aims to empower citizens to participate in the local development process and implement projects that can improve the delivery of social services in their communities.

In the CALABARZON region, it has implemented 619 sub-projects last program cycle which include farm-to-market roads, community centers, school buildings, health centers and electrification among others.#

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