DSWD taps health officials for measles prevention

Cagayan de Oro City — The Department of Social Welfare and Development in Northern Mindanao has tapped the expertise of local health officials to prevent possible viral infection caused by measles to Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiaries.

Jerome Humawan, Family Development Session (FDS) focal of Pantawid Pamilya, said the doctors, nurses, and midwives have conducted lectures about the potentially deadly infection during the monthly conduct of FDS in order to protect the beneficiaries against measles, especially children, pregnant mothers and immuno-compromised individual.

Northern Mindanao has 248,606 Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries and is divided into 8,815 cluster group. Each cluster is composed of 30 to 35 households.

Humawan disclosed that during the first two months of this year local health officials intensified its campaign against possible spread of measles virus among beneficiaries.

“It was a region wide activity of FDS where majority of the resource persons are from the Department of Health, registered nurses from RN heals, midwives of LGUs, and city and municipal health officers,” he said.

During the discussion, local health officials emphasized on the importance of measles vaccination to Pantawid Pamilya grantees, as it is a highly contagious disease. A single measles case can infect up to 18 other individuals.

Measles is an infection of the respiratory system, immune system and skin caused by paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus.

During the FDS, the health officials told the parents that most children with measles easily recover, but the illness may cause death because of pneumonia, acute diarrhea with severe dehydration or acute encephalitis.

Pantawid Pamilya is a program of the national government that promotes human capital accumulation by incentivizing the children’s capacity to stay in school. The accumulation of human capital is necessary to break the transmission of inter-generational poverty and to make growth more inclusive while FDS is one of the conditionalities of the program that beneficiaries should comply with in order to receive cash grants.

Written by Oliver Badel Inodeo, DSWD

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Rain or Shine

DSWD’s Pantawid Pamilya workers brave the slippery and muddy road of a hinterland barangay of Kitaotao, Bukidnon to conduct massive validation of potential grantees of the program.

“Caption by Oliver Badel Inodeo; Photo by Cherrylou Acobo”

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Pantawid Pamilya Validation

Potential grantees of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development troop to the on-going validation such as this in the interior town of Kadingilan, Bukidnon.

Bukidnon has 8,054 potential beneficiaries.

“Caption by Oliver Badel Inodeo; Photo by Cherrylou Acobo”

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DSWD validates former Pantawid grantees for possible reinstatement

Cagayan de Oro City — The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) will validate starting today the 44,129 potential grantees of the extended age coverage of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (Pantawid Pamilya) in Northern Mindanao.

The potential grantees are former beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya coming from the five provinces of the region who became ineligible of the program after reaching the age of 15 or above.

The extended age coverage program of DSWD for former grantees of Pantawid Pamilya aims to go beyond the five-year limit to cover up to high school education; to extend the age coverage up to eighteen (18) years of age, taking into account the K-12 program of the Department of Education; to provide a higher grant amount of P500 per child in high school; to remove the health grant for households who have  been in the program for more than 60 months or 5 years; and to maintain the limit of three child beneficiaries per household.

Currently, Pantawid Pamilya provides education grants covering children age 3-14 at the start of the school year.

The validation is part of the implementing rules and regulations set and approved by the National Advisory Committee, the highest policy-making inter-agency body of Pantawid Pamilya, for the extended age coverage program.

In its resolution number 12, series of 2013, NAC recognizes the need to extend support to the child beneficiaries to further pursue the rights of children and enable the program to contribute to the end of the inter-generational cycle of poverty.

”Pantawid Pamilya promotes human capital accumulation by incentivizing the children’s capacity to stay in school. The accumulation of human capital is necessary to break the transmission of inter-generational poverty and to make growth more inclusive,” the resolution said, adding that “Pantawid Pamilya incentivizes school enrollment and consistent attendance by supplementing the household income to cover for the direct and indirect costs of schooling.”

Pantawid Pamilya has been demonstrated to be effective in promoting enrollment in children in this age range and keeping them in school. However, analysis also demonstrates that the program is not able to increase enrollment among children older than this age range.

“The combination of a sizable (roughly 4-10 percentage point) increase in enrollment at ages 3-14 that disappears at ages above the current Pantawid Pamilya cut-off of age 14 has been demonstrated via both the 1st Wave Impact Evaluation of the Program reported in (Chaudhury, Friedman, & Onishi, 2013) as well as complementary analysis of an independent data set, the 2011 Annual Poverty Indicator Survey (APIS), as reported in Paqueo, Orbeta, Castaneda, & Spohr (2013).

“Dropout of Pantawid Pamilya child beneficiaries just above the current age 14 cut-off of the program’s educational grant represents a loss to the government’s education and longer-term poverty reduction objectives and also to households, since a child who fails to complete high school is likely to earn much lower income as an adult,” the NAC noted.

Under the extended age coverage program, the selection of children aged 3-18 for education monitoring shall be based on the following existing policy: For Sets 1-5 households, the child beneficiaries selected by the system will continue to be monitored; For Set 6 households, existing child beneficiaries selected by the household will continue to be monitored; and For Set 7 households and onwards, the household shall select among the children included in the household roster from the registration.

The program will cover poor households with child beneficiaries up to 18 years of age or finish high school, whichever comes first.  Those who turn 19 years of age within the school year will still be monitored until the end of the school year.

Lawyer Araceli F. Solamillo, Regional Director of DSWD in Northern Mindanao disclosed that after validation and enrolled back to the program, children grantees, irrespective of year level, must enroll in school and maintain a class attendance rate of at least 85% per month. For a child beneficiary enrolled in elementary school, the education grant package P300  per month. On the other hand, for a child beneficiary enrolled in high school, the education grant package P500 per month.

Solamillo added that for health conditionalities, grantees are required to have periodic checkups, growth monitoring, and vaccinations for children 0-5 years of age; twice a year intake of de-worming pills for children 6-14 years old, pre- and post-natal care for pregnant women. A health grant package P500 per household per month will be provided to households, irrespective of the household composition, that have only been in the program for 60 months or less.

The grant package will be based on the grade level of the child beneficiaries and years of program exposure of the household. The highest possible grant package is P 2,000 per household per month for households with 3 children in high school and has been in the program for less than 60 months or 5 years.

For Family Development Session, the parent grantees will be monitored monthly irrespective of household’s length of exposure. For households who have been in the program for 5 years and less, this will be tied to the health grant. For households who have been in the program for more than 5 years, this will no longer be tied to any grant.

Also, those eligible for grants for high school extension starting January 2014 will be paid retroactively.

Lanao del Norte province has the highest number of potential grantees with 15,026; followed by Misamis Oriental with 12,960; Bukidnon-8,054; Misamis Occidental-6,814; and Camiguin-1,275.

Written by Oliver Badel Inodeo, Pantawid Pamilya Information Officer/Photo by Cherrylou Acobo, Pantawid CSO focal person

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Up Close and Personal with the 2013 Best Social Worker of DSWD

Public service must be more than doing a job efficient and honestly. It must be a complete dedication to the people and to the nation. This is the philosophy of Evelyn Madrio, the Social Welfare and Development Team Leader of Lanao del Norte and Iligan City, as she continues to serve the Department for 19 years of excellent service.

Being a social worker in the Department is not just an ordinary profession. It has always been about teamwork, pride, courage and commitment to excellence.

How did this woman of excellence delivered high quality of public service?

Her determination to be educated

Lyn, as she is fondly called by her peers, was born on May 27, 1968 and hailed from Jimenez, Misamis Occidental. She graduated at Sinara Elementary School in 1978 and finished her secondary at Jimenez Bethel Institute in 1984.

Life was difficult for this social worker since they are seven siblings in the family and her father is a seasonal carpenter. But this did not hinder Evelyn to pursue her college degree as she enrolled Social Work in MSU-Marawi in 1985 as a full scholar. As a college student, she also had a share of challenges as she experienced waking up in the wee hours of morning to study and only to realize that breakfast served will only be sautéed sayote with eggs, and the same meal is also served during lunch. But the determined Evelyn did not mind this. To support her monthly needs, she also did household chores for her sister during weekends or vacation. Eventually, Evelyn completed her Social Work degree successfully.

Early years

Just like any other newly graduate, the younger Evelyn was full of fresh ideals and principles. She went to Bahrain to work for two years and eight months. But something inside her made her decide to return home.

The calling to become a practicing social worker was her turning point. In November 1994, she finally applied to the DSWD as a casual worker with the position of SWO I. She was assigned at the Home for the Girls which catered sexually abused and maltreated children. In 1997, she was promoted as SWO II and attained permanent status.

Life became more challenging for this dynamic servant when she was tasked as a community-based social worker in the areas of Cagayan de Oro and Misamis Oriental. Part of her challenging task is to implement case management and provision of programs and services to these community-based clients namely: Children in Conflict with the Law clients, Sexually Abused/ Maltreated/ Abandoned/Neglected Children, Minor Travel Abroad, Women in Difficult Circumstances and Trafficking in Persons.

With this undertaking, Madrio monitored the adoption of National Laws for Children and Women at the local level, monitored the current condition and the progress of children placed in foster homes, implemented Rice Subsidy Cash-for-Work/Cash for Training Program to 249 farmers and fisher folks from Munai and Bacolod, Lanao del Norte.

Moreover, this dependable servant prepared project proposals for Emergency Shelter Assistance (ESA), Neighborhood Association for Shelter Assistance (NASA), Educational Assistance and Advocacy Forum.

To top it all, she provided support to 189 IDPs in the provision of Emergency Shelter Assistance (ESA) for Sendong survivors, acted as Special Disbursing Officer (SDO) during releases of Social Pension in the different municipalities of Lanao del Norte and provided technical assistance to Local Social Welfare and Development Officers and non-government partners along case management on court-related cases and other social welfare programs and services.

Juanita Alviola, Bantay Bata Center Head for Iligan City identified Ms. Madrio as a committed worker. “Nakatrabaho nako si Evelyn since 2005 pa. Naay mga cases dri nga gahimoan niya ug mga referrals. Daghan siya ug natabangan labi na sa educational assistance,” she said. (I have worked with Evelyn since 2005. We have cases here in which Evelyn made referrals. She had helped a lot of clients especially in providing educational assistance.)

Ms. Alviola also disclosed that one of her memorable experiences with Ms. Madrio was handling a rape case. “Gi-rescue to ni Evelyn ang bata sa Lanao del Norte and then dri gibutang sa amoa for further safe keeping,” she added.  (Evelyn rescued the child in Lanao del Norte and then she was placed here for further safekeeping.)

“If I am to describe Evelyn, I would say that she is workaholic, committed and approachable. She always made sure that all her tasks are done on time,” she remarked.

Moreover, Golden Eva Castro, Center Head for Children in Conflict with the Law revealed that Ms. Madrio had been very supportive since their partnership in 2005.

“She is very cooperative in terms of referrals and in giving technical assistance to us,” she said.

One of her unforgettable experiences with Ms. Madrio was helping a 17-year old client, who was involved in a drug-related case, popularly referred to as Republic Act 9265.

“Very professional kaayo iyang approach kay aside sa paghatag ug educational assistance ug ALS, nag-offer pud siya ug spiritual enhancement,” she added. (Her approach was very professional because aside from providing educational assistance and Alternative Learning System (ALS), she also offered spiritual enhancement.)

“As a partner, Ms. Madrio is very professional and intelligent as well,” she concluded.

Significant Positions, Innovations and Best Practices

Indeed, this woman of responsibility climbed the ladder of success as she continued to extend her public service. In 2005, she still held the position of Social Welfare Officer II but her area of assignment is now changed to Iligan and Lanao del Norte. As of June this year, this woman of integrity and competence was also promoted as Social Welfare Officer III with the same area; a solid proof of her continuous commitment and professionalism to the Department.

One of the highlights of her career is her involvement of the Department’s Disaster Relief programs and services when Typhoon Sendong hit the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan. The local government unit of Iligan City is the living witness on how Ms. Madrio mobilized non-government organizations, the church and other partner agencies

In the absence of the Regional Director, Ms. Madrio resolved problems, gaps/constraints along camp management and camp coordination. She updated humanitarian partners with the status of relief operations, identified gaps and constraints along emergency response management and was able to come up with appropriate solutions.

Ms. Madrio also made sure that there is transparency when updating with the flow of donations and availability of resources from other humanitarian communities. She complemented relief assistance and services with all other humanitarian organizations to address the growing needs of supervisors. Further, she strengthened and enhanced coordination with other agencies/organizations along disaster operations in Iligan City.

“I have always identified Evelyn as the “link” between DSWD and the LGU. I think that was her most important role during the time of Sendong and even up to now. She made sure that the convergence of two agencies will answer the immediate needs of our people,” disclosed Iligan City Councilor Frederick Siao and Head of Camp Coordination and Camp Management.

“I would like to sum up Evelyn’s character as responsible, in-command and down to earth,” he commented.

“She might be tough but deep inside she is very active in the church and God-fearing. I hope we will maintain the “connection” because her unconditional dedication to serve our constituents here in Iligan is indeed exemplary,” Siao stressed.

During the Sendong crisis, her active involvement also focused on presiding meetings on shelter cluster, food and non-food, protection cluster and camp coordination and camp management. With this, she took charge in giving updates as to status of shelter projects and progress reports on constructed units and relocation sites being developed.

This also included monitoring of evacuation camps with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) where she properly addressed health, sanitation and protection concerns inside the camp. She made sure that on-time delivery of relief assistance to camps particularly food and water, have been practiced. She also considered tracking of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and updating a master list as crucial.

More importantly, Ms. Madrio represented DSWD during different open forums for Sendong survivors in Iligan City and involved herself in the conduct of rapid assessment in selected Sendong-affected areas in Iligan City with international humanitarian teams.

Engaging in partnerships with other humanitarian teams proved to be very significant in the life of this social worker. Ms. Baicon Macaraya, National Programme Officer of World Food Programme, emphasized the role of Ms. Madrio during the occurrence of Typhoon Sendong and Pablo.

“I find Evelyn very friendly. As a cooperating partner from the government, she was very open, transparent and supportive during the time when we organized clusters. And I appreciated that because we need people who can still manage to smile despite the pressure. The kind of quality which a social worker should possess,” she revealed.

The local government of Bacolod, Lanao del Norte also recognized the efforts of Ms. Madrio as MSWDO Henedina Aban narrated how the public servant helped the municipality during the cash for work for the farmers and social pension payouts. Thus, identified as having a “heart for the poor.”

“Si Evelyn all-out support gyud ni dri sa Bacolod ug walay langan motrabaho. Very effective ug sincere motrabaho,” she said. (With Evelyn, she gives her all-out support and does not have any delays when working. She is very effective and sincere in her job.)

MSWDO Aban also relayed how she, herself, was aided by Ms. Madrio when she suffered kidney problems and is now undergoing dialysis.

“Gihimoan pud ko niya ug social case study para maka-avail lang ko ug medical assistance kay ga-dialysis na ko twice a month,” she noted. (She even made me a social case study so that I can avail the medical assistance because I am undergoing dialysis twice a month.)

Going the extra mile on Neighborhood Shelter Assistance (NASA)

Michaela Talento, 38 years old and a resident of Barangay San Roque, Iligan City is just one of the beneficiaries of Neighborhood Association and Shelter Assistance (NASA) as well as Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP).

She recalled how Ms.Madrio facilitated her, together with the rest of the 30 families, who availed the shelter assistance.

“Grabe among pasalamat kay Maam Evelyn gyud kay abi gyud namo nga dli na madayon nga matagaan mi ug balay. Siya gyud ang naghatag sa amo ug paglaum,” the teary-eyed beneficiary said. (I am truly grateful to Maam Evelyn because I thought that the shelter assistance project will not push through.)

The beneficiary also related that Ms. Madrio has provided them excellent technical assistance when they were still preparing the necessary documents. She further described the social worker as kind, approachable and knows how to empathize with them.

“Sa una katong wala pa mi nabalayan, naa ra mi natuog sa dalan nga abog kaayo. Karon kampante na mi kay naa na mi sakto nga matulgan,” she happily expressed.  (Before, when we did not avail yet the shelter assistance, we only slept along the street which is very dusty. But now, we feel comfortable because we have a place to sleep.)

Currently, the beneficiary is also a recipient of the Sustainable Livelihood Program and is now working out with establishing a Community Mortgage Program in the said area.

 

On Children Needing Special Protection

Perhaps the most inspiring of Ms. Madrio’s endeavors is seeing a client who surpassed the challenges of being a child in need of special protection and became successful in real life.

Eleazar Oliveros was just 17 years old when he was rescued by this self-motivated social worker. During his ordeal of facing his traumatic experience, Ms. Madrio never ceased in providing technical assistance and eventually, educational assistance.

Her holistic approach became the guiding force of the young Eleazar to finish high school until college.

“Ang dili nako malimtan ni Maam Evelyn kay maskig nahuman na ko sa akong pageskwela ug wala na ko sa center, iya gyapon ko gi-followup maski naa nako sa college,” he expressed. (What I will never forget with Maam Evelyn is that even if I already finished high school and was already out in the center, she would still make follow-up visits until I was in college.)

Eleazar narrated how Ms. Madrio inspired him to pursue his studies even in the midst of poverty.

“Nag-student assistant ko ug lima ka tuig para lang makaeskwela. Gitagaan pa gyud kog sapatos ni Maam Evelyn kay wala koy masuot man,” he said. (I became a student assistant for five years just to go to school. Maam Evelyn even gave me a pair of shoes because I had nothing to wear.)

When asked about a significant experience with the social worker, Eleazar recalled that he will never forget when Ms. Madrio gave him a treat when he graduated from college.

Dili gyud nako to malimtan nga iya kung gipakaon pagkahibalo niya nga ni-graduate na ko sa college. Mao gyapon iyang gibuhat pagkahibalo niya nga nakapasar ko sa board exam,” he related. (I will never forget when she gave me a treat upon knowing that I already graduated from college. She did the same thing when she knew that I passed the board exam.)

Mr. Oliveros is now 25 years old and finished Bachelor of Science in Criminology. He is currently processing his application to become a law enforcer.

On Foster Care

Another heart-warming story that brings out Ms. Madrio’s admirable accomplishment in social work is the unforgettable experience of Ricardo and Losminda Bayalas. The couple have always wanted to have a child and so have decided to seek advice from DSWD.

Through the technical assistance offered by Ms. Madrio, the couple was facilitated to prepare all the necessary documents required for foster care. In four months, the couple’s prayers were answered. They qualified to become adoptive parents of Jullianne Claire.

“Hangtud karon dako gyud among pasalamat kay Maam Evelyn kay gitubag niya among pag-ampo. Gihatag gyud niya among pangandoy nga magkabata mi sa among panimalay,” Losminda shared. (Until now, we owe our deepest gratitude to Maam Evelyn because our prayers were finally answered. She granted our wish to have a child in our home.

The couple is now exercising at the same time enjoying responsible parenthood to Jullianne Claire, now a Grade 2 student in a private school.

Working with colleagues

Ms. Madrio has also been distinguished as a competent and professional worker not only in the community but also among her peers.

Ms. Gloria Mosqueda, Ms. Madrio’s unit head and Focal Person for Community-based and Social Pension remarked that the nominee is a woman who possessed the knowledge, skills and competence not only as a case manager but also as a SWAD Team Leader most especially during the outbreak of Sendong.

“She has the inherent values in giving worth and dignity of all her clients regardless of social status in the community,” Ms. Mosqueda said.

Arthur Barrero, Cluster Head of the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) also elaborated that Ms. Madrio is exceptional in terms of leadership skills.

“Evelyn has been my partner when Typhoon Sendong hit the cities of Iligan and Cagayan de Oro. During the assignment, she was very active in camp coordination and camp management. She takes the initiative to listen to our suggestions especially on the different issues and concerns affecting the three poverty reduction programs,” he added.

“Maam Evelyn is someone that we highly respect because she really takes time to listen to us, MOA workers and also helps us coordinating with the local government and other partners,” MCCT Team Leader Jahara Pandapan elaborated.

Lessons learned in social work service

If there is one thing that Ms. Madrio appreciated as a social worker, these are the guiding principles as well as the lessons that she learned during her 19 years of committed public service. The social worker revealed how she valued honesty to oneself and to her clients.

This dedicated public servant also values time as she sees to it how this is important in managing both family and career.

“My day starts at 5am when I read the Bible. And when I work, I always value time especially with my clients because this gives me a sense of fulfilment,” she noted.

She also recognizes how important it is to be motivated. “As a social worker, the drive to be motivated especially in helping clients is a gift. Not all people can perform our job. This will always be a blessing to me,” she stressed.

For Ms. Madrio, the most fulfilling part of a social worker is seeing her clients successful in their respective fields. She also emphasized the importance of work values especially integrity, commitment and dedication.

To her, all accomplishments are blessings from God.

“If you only trust the Lord and do your part, everything will fall into place,” she ended.

Ms. Evelyn Madrio is also a registered nurse and a doting mother of two kids, Keziah Keren and Shaniah Keren. She is happily married to her college sweetheart, Edmund Hipolito. As of this time, Ms. Madrio is actively working as an agent and advocate of change in the promotion of social work practice in the Department and to the wider community. (Written by Divorrah Meneses, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer of Pantawid Pamilya)

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Woman fights poverty by training her family to complement her business

Cagayan de Oro City – Starting a business with limited resources is a challenge, especially for women.

For Susana Cabreros, 51, a housewife living in Zone 1, Upper Carmen, this city, life has not been easy. Her husband is a “motorela” driver who earns with only a meager income until they put up a tailoring business, with a group of women beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (Pantawid Pamilya), benefiting from a P10,000 micro-finance scheme provided by the Sustainable Livelihood Program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Susana is now a businesswoman earning a decent income by heading the Upper Carmen Sisterhood Association with 15-woman members who have engaged in tailoring business here. Each of the members shared P10,000 to put up a capital of P150,000 to start the business. The group specializes on making jersey tee shirts and shorts, bags jogging pants, polo shirts, among others.

“I always have a daily income to defray the cost of our daily needs,” she said.

With the new business, she can fulfill her dream to secure her children’s education and provide a better life for her family.

Engaging children with the business

The tailoring business is just four months in operation.

But, Susana is optimistic her group will go beyond the members’ expectation as they are earning. Susana is earning an average of P200 daily which augments her husband’s income from driving.

Aside from that, her eldest son, Ryan, who is now married, is in-charge of printing the t-shirts, short pants, jogging pants, and other orders of their customers. Ryan is good in silk screen and rubberized printing. He gets P100 by just printing a pair of basketball uniform.

Susana’s eldest sister, Florenda Degomio, who is also a member of the group, is the master cutter of the shop. She is in-charge also of training four other sewers of the shop, ensuring quality and aesthetic value of their services and products. The shop started with only Florenda and Susana as cutters and sewers. Susana and her elder sister were forced to train the three other sewers of the group for three months which, consequently, yielded a positive response and result.

“They can perform now without our supervision,” said Susana.

Designing bags, shirts, and pants is not new to Susana. She learned designing from her previous work from a private tailoring company based in this city. However, most of the products of the shop is made out of following the catalogs they bought.

But if the customer wants customized designs for bags, t-shirts, and pants; her 12-year old daughter, Crystal, is ready to do it for them. Crystal has been into customized designing since the start of the operation of the shop.

Susana disclosed that Crystal only helps her design after studying. She considered the participation of the members of her family as individual training in preparation for better future.

“I am just thankful that with DSWD’s help, a better life for poor families like mine can happen,” Susana expresses. “I see now that I CAN make a difference in fighting poverty by what I am doing now.”

Susana’s family is one of the Set 1 beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya who received grants from SLP in Northern Mindanao.

SLP is a community-based capacity building program of DSWD that seeks to improve the socio-economic status of program participants. It is implemented through the Community-Driven Enterprise Development (CDED) approach, which equips the program participants to actively contribute to production and labor markets by making use of available resources and accessible markets.

On the other hand, Pantawid Pamilya is the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program of government implemented by the DSWD so that families are able to get financial assistance, provided they comply with certain conditions imposed by Pantawid Pamilya, which include seeing to the health and education needs of their children.

Written by Oliver Badel Inodeo, DSWD

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DSWD, CHED open 1,706 slots for college scholarship

Cagayan de Oro City – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Commission on Higher Education here has opened 1,706 college scholarship grants for Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (Pantawid Pamilya) beneficiaries.

Cherrylou Acobo, focal person for Students’ Grants-in-Aid Program for Poverty Alleviation (SGP-PA) of DSWD Northern Mindanao, disclosed that the slots is an additional opening for the program which aims at contributing to the national government’s thrusts in effectively addressing poverty alleviation by increasing number of graduates in higher education among poor households and to get these graduates employed in high – value added occupations in order to lift their families out of poverty and contribute to national development.

Of the number of slots, Acobo revealed that CHED is now processing 3,584 applicants, who are Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries coming from the different towns and cities of the region.

She added that applicants will be ranked according to their respective ratings after taking an examination administered by state universities and colleges accredited by CHED.

“Those who will be included in the first 1,706 ranking will be admitted for further screening process of their chosen SUCs,” Acobo said.

Meanwhile, CHED also announced on the additional accredited SUCs which can accept and enroll SGP-PA grantees for school year 2014-2015. These are Bukidnon State University in Malaybalay City, Bukidnon; Misamis Oriental State College of Agriculture and Technology in Claveria, Misamis Oriental; Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology in Iligan City, Lanao del Norte; Northwestern Mindanao State College of Science and Technology in Tangub City, Misamis Occidental; and Camiguin Polytechnic State College in Mambajao, Camiguin.

As of second semester of school year 2013-2014, Northern Mindanao has 212 scholars enrolled at Mindanao University of Science and Technology (MUST) campuses here and in Panaon, Misamis Occidental and at Central Mindanao University in Maramag, Bukidnon.

A student – beneficiary  is entitled to a maximum of P60,000 grant per school year. It means that the scholar will receive P10,000 a semester  for  tuition fee (based on the national average tuition fees of SUCs) and other fees; P2,500 for textbooks and other learning materials; and P3,500 a month for board and lodging, transportation, clothing, health and medical needs, basic school supplies and other related costs.

A scholar has to carry a full load per semester as prescribed in the curriculum and finish within the required period of the program; maintain a satisfactory academic performance in accordance with the policies and standards of the SUC; render a return service of two years after graduation in the Philippines except for highly critical courses determined by local industry and government services; and adhere to terms and conditions as stipulated in the contract. (Written by Oliver Badel Inodeo, Pantawid Pamilya Information Officer)

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Seven LGUs to adopt DSWD projects

Cagayan de Oro City — Seven municipalities and a non-governmental organization in Northern Mindanao are set to adopt and implement projects of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

The local government units from the provinces of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental, through its mayors, signed a memorandum of agreement with DSWD in order to adopt and to replicate projects for the advancement of the welfare of the vulnerable sectors of the society.

Among the projects adopted individually are Share Computer Access Local and Abroad (SCALA), Modified Social Stress Model (MSSM), Sheltered Workshop for Older Persons and Persons with Disability; Youth Productivity Service (YPS), and Family Drug Abuse Prevention Program.

SCALA is a community based basic computer literacy program that aims to enhance the employment opportunities of disadvantaged youth. It includes installation of training facility with appropriate equipment. The program is implemented in partnership with the Engineers without Borders of Canada and the local government units while MSSM is an assessment tool for social welfare for case management in or der to know the individual needs of the clients why they engage in such conditions that are hazardous to their well-being.

Meanwhile the YPS is an integrated skills and job placement project for out of school youth led by LGUs from Region X in partnership with Consuelo Foundation and other government agencies such as TESDA while FDAPP is community-based program that educates and prepares families and the communities on the adverse effects of drug abuse. It involves the promotion of family life enrichment activities to enhance cohesiveness, bonding and harmonious relationship among family members. It also equips the families with parenting and life skills towards a drug free home.

The municipalities include Kibawe, Quezon, Manolo Fortich, and Don Carlos; all of Bukidnon province and Balingoan, Talisayan, and Gitagum; all of Misamis Oriental. The Youth with A Mission, an NGO in this city, is also adopting a project of DSWD.

The Social Technology Bureau is responsible for the development and enhancement of customer- driven social protection technologies addressing the current and emerging needs and issues of the poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals, groups or families.

Meanwhile, DSWD is conducting a research study on the situational analysis of child laborers in minging, pyrotechnics and deep-sea fishing area in Northern Mindanao.

The team has conducted enumeration in the villages of Pagatpat, Kauswagan, Consolacion, Iponan, and Canitoan here and later in Natumulan, Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental and Gango, Libona, Bukidnon.

The study aims to describe, analyze, and understand the phenomenon of child laborers, families, and communities who are engaged in the worst form of child labor.

The identified areas are considered as mining and quarry communities. (Written by Oliver Badel Inodeo, Pantawid Pamilya Information Officer)

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