Archive | June 9th, 2021

DSWD welcomes new executive order on devolution

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) welcomes the signing of the Executive Order (EO) No. 138 or the “Full Devolution of Certain Functions of the Executive Branch to Local Governments, Creation of a Committee on Devolution, and for other purposes.”

Under EO 138, some of the functions, services, and facilities of national government agencies related to local infrastructures, health care, livelihood, agriculture, and social welfare, among others, will be transferred to local government units (LGUs), with accompanying budget allotment.

The DSWD believes that the devolution of social welfare and development (SWD) services to LGUs will translate to their closer, more efficient, and accountable delivery, especially to those in need of immediate assistance.

The Department is hopeful that the Committee on Devolution will be able to issue the rules and regulations within the 30-day timeframe stipulated in the EO.

The DSWD will focus more on its steering role and assures the public that it will continue to work closely with LGUs. This includes capacitating them, and providing technical assistance and resource augmentation to ensure that the devolved SWD services will be effectively and sustainably implemented. ###

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DSWD, POPCOM team up to address teenage pregnancy in the country

In an effort to address teenage pregnancies in the country, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Commission on Population and Development (POPCOM) will undertake the Social Protection Program for Teenage Mothers and their Children (SPPTMC) as mandated under the special provision of the 2021 General Appropriations Act of 2021.

This partnership will be reinforced through a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to be signed by DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito D. Bautista and POPCOM Undersecretary for Population and Development and Executive Director, Juan Antonio A. Perez III, on June 10, 2021 to be broadcasted live via DSWD and POPCOM’s official Facebook pages.

The partnership aims to establish a social protection program specifically for teenage mothers who are minors and their children.

Both agencies commit to undertake the activities specified in the MOA to achieve the program’s objectives, including data gathering and  research, mobilization, sharing and exchange of databases and advocacy campaigns.

Under the MOA, the DSWD, through the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), and POPCOM have an approved and existing data sharing agreement (DSA) to facilitate the data exchange towards convergence of programs and services for the existing 4Ps beneficiaries. Both agencies agree to utilize said DSA to develop possible interventions or programs specific for teenage mothers, who are minors, and their children covered under the 4Ps.

Another DSA may be developed to address the needs of teenage mothers, who are minors, and their children not covered by the 4Ps. The DSWD and POPCOM shall ensure compliance to Republic Act No. 10173, or the Data Privacy Act of 2012, for the protection of personal information gathered towards and during the implementation.

The development of the SPPTMC is in its preparatory stage with both agencies collaborating on the conduct of consultation workshops with stakeholders and rapid appraisal on the situation of teenage pregnancy in the Philippines.

SPPTMC seeks to prevent teenage pregnancies and establish sufficient and accessible measures to protect the well-being of teenaged mothers and their children, as envisioned in the Philippine Development Plan and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

DSWD and POPCOM mutually recognize the importance of preventing pregnancies among teenagers who are minors because of the life-long implications on the wellbeing of young people, a population group that is vital in national development

DSWD initiative vs teenage pregnancy

Meanwhile, in 2020, the DSWD through the Social Technology Bureau, in its response to address teenage pregnancy, has initially developed a concept paper on “TEEN SUPPORT: Psychological Support and other Interventions for Teenage Parents and their Families”, with teenage parents below 18 years old as beneficiaries. It aims to protect and promote the psychological well-being of, and improve the capacity of teenage parents in performing their expected roles as young adults and responsibilities as parenting youth.

The project components include, Online Psychological Support; Family Life Enrichment Sessions, and Direct Assistance and Referral Services, either online or face-to-face.  It will be implemented for a period of six months in 2022 after the finalization of the program design based on the results of the rapid appraisal research.

Through Teen Support, it is envisioned that young parents are able to prevent future unplanned and repeated pregnancies; cope with the demands of parenting, and perform their social roles both as teenagers and parents. -30-

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Majority of DSWD employees receptive of Covid-19 vaccines

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has seen an increase in the receptiveness of its employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Based on the two Pulse Surveys conducted, the number of employees willing to be inoculated with the vaccine grew from 35 percent in February to 74 percent in May 2021.

When the employees who are now willing to be inoculated were asked what factors led to their change of mind, most referred to the information they received on the vaccine as the factor that influenced their current willingness to be inoculated.

The rise in vaccine confidence and receptiveness was due to the consistent information dissemination activities done by the Department, in partnership with the Department of Health, to promote the importance of getting inoculated to protect them and their families against the virus.

Likewise, among the common materials or activities on the COVID-19 vaccine deployment program used by the Department included e-mail blasts and memoranda on updates related to the vaccine. Half of the employees or 50 percent of those who answered the survey also reported satisfaction on the dissemination of information related to COVID-19 vaccine, while 21 percent were very satisfied.

The facilitators of the survey emphasized that the research design was devised as a rapid assessment survey and that more sophisticated research methods may be used to more accurately describe the changes in the vaccine confidence of the employees.

Meanwhile, the DSWD has started the registration of essential workers for vaccination. As of the latest count, more than 9,000 personnel from the Central Office and in various DSWD Field Offices have already registered their intent to get vaccinated.

The Department pledges to continue to help in the government’s dissemination and promotion of the COVID-19 vaccination and vaccine deployment program to achieve population protection. ###

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June 2021