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SLP as Part of a Recipe for a Better Tomorrow

Perlita Cahatol and her family of seven were coping with the demands of living in Cagayan de Oro City until they were challenged with bigger trials starting with her husband’s accident. This incident forced the family to migrate to Kibawe, Bukidnon in hopes to have a better quality of life. The house they built were made of upcycled materials which is not protective against weatherly elements as they now depend on their income as farmers.

Life is hard enough as it is but Perlita finds herself pregnant with their sixth child. The birth of the baby was also the day her husband got into another accident that left him permanently disabled from walking again. It was dark times for the family in coping with her husband’s accident that Perlita thought of giving up the baby for adoption. With her husband’s consent, the baby was turned over to a family who can best provide the developmental needs of the child. A hard decision to make but it was for the best interest for the child that Perlita wants for her baby. She sets her focus on caring for his now-PWD husband and growing children who are also in need of her. Through fervent prayers for mercy that Perlita finds comfort to allay her worries and guilt. Little did she know that things are about to turn around for her.

With her gained skills from Cookery NCII training she received through SLP, Perlita set up an eatery business that proved profitable even during the health pandemic.

As a 4Ps beneficiary, Perlita joined the Cookery NCII Skills Training by DSWD through the Sustainable Livelihood Program. The gained skills opened new opportunities for her as she opened her own eatery after completing the course. Six years on, the business has grown and the family is living comfortably as she hoped. All children are doing good at school as scholars. They have been in close communication with their youngest who is living with his adoptive family, who will be migrating with them to another country soon. From dried fish and shrimp paste as staple meals to affording healthy meals; light materials to concrete and tiled home; from living on a day-to-day basis to having savings, things are indeed looking up for Perlita.

The Cahatol family are now living a more comfortable life as the family greatly benefitted from Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and Sustainable Livelihood Program of DSWD.

For Perlita, SLP paved the way to a brighter future and cannot be more grateful for how her life turned out despite the many trials she had to overcome.

Photos and story contributed by Norwel C. Placer, Project Development Officer II

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DSWD clarifies posts on alleged cash benefits for employees

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) clarified the text messages and Facebook posts that are currently circulating on the alleged provision of cash benefits for former and present Agency employees. There is no truth to these messages.

The DSWD stated that all benefits stipulated in the General Appropriations Act are provided to permanent, co-terminus, contractual and casual personnel; while only those benefits stipulated in the Memorandum of Agreement of Contract of Service / Job order workers are provided.

The DSWD also emphasized that official platforms, including internal memoranda coursed through official email addresses or individual correspondences, as appropriate, are being used to communicate with officials and staff with regard to compensation and benefits. Individuals particularly those receiving messages such as this, are encouraged to verify said information with the Department through its Human Resource Management and Development Service and/or its counterparts in the field offices.

The Department also reminded the public, especially its employees, not to provide their personal details through the given links as this may be phishing scams.###

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IPs in Northern Mindanao lead community-driven development projects through KALAHI-CIDSS

The DSWD KALAHI-CIDSS, through the Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan Indigenous People Community Driven Development (PAMANA IP-CDD) modality delivered 47 community-led sub-projects throughout Region X in 2020, promising a sustained effort to push for IPs’ welfare in 2021.

Operating in the provinces of Bukidnon, Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental, the PAMANA IP-CDD has an ongoing implementation in the same provinces with 20 sub-projects underway this year.  

2020 Accomplishments

DSWD, through KALAHI-CIDSS, supports the PAMANA framework—the government’s peace and development framework, by providing micro-level interventions that promote the convergent delivery of services and goods focused on households and communities utilizing the Community-Driven Development (CDD) strategy.

Started in 2017, through the engagement of DSWD with the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process (OPAPP), the project aims to: Deliver basic services to IP communities through supporting the implementation of the Ancestral Domain Sustainable Development and Protection Plan (ADSDPP); strengthen partnership of local governance institutions and the Indigenous Political Structures (IPS); and build communities’ resilience to conflict.

2021 Ongoing implementation

11 barangays within the provinces of Bukidnon and Misamis Occidental are yet to begin their sub-projects located in the municipalities of Impasug-ong, Sumilao, Tudela, and Oroquieta City (Capital).

The KALAHI-CIDSS IP CDD Area Coordinating Teams (ACTs) constantly undergo capacity buildings and technical sessions to ensure effective facilitation of community-led projects, fostering empowerment among IPs through their active participation and inclusion in the local development process.

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DSWD-X issues cash cards to UCT beneficiaries for their safety

DSWD Field Office X and Land Bank of the Philippines strengthens partnership to deliver safe and quality service to DSWD clients.

MAKING THINGS SAFER. Having seen the importance of ensuring the safety of its beneficiaries during the pandemic, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office X distributed cash cards to 1,139 residents in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte who are eligible to receive the Unconditional Cash Transfer (UCT).

Issued by Land Bank of the Philippines, the cash cards will enable UCT beneficiaries to claim their stipend from the DSWD Field Office X from ATM machines, without having to queue in off-site payouts.

As an agency that responds to the needs of the poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals, families, and communities, the DSWD Field Office X continues to seek recommendations from the Department of Health, and the Regional Inter-Agency Task Force for Emergency and Infectious Diseases (RIATF) and implement measures that will help lessen the effects of COVID-19 in Northern Mindanao.

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For the Community, By the Community

In August 2004, KAWOSA (then KASAPI) was organized by a select group of women who saw the financial need for fiesta celebrations and other festivities. To address this need, the group decided to contribute Php300.00 as start-up capital for a micro-lending activity. They charged an interest of 10% per month. To keep track of their micro-lending project, they agreed to meet every last Sunday of the month at the school’s waiting shed. The proceeds (dividends) from the micro-lending activity are distributed every December, during their Christmas party.

In May 2005, KASAPI decided to re-organize the association and change its name to Kasapi Women’s and Savings Association (KAWOSA). Through the Barangay Council, some KAWOSA officers and members were selected to attend the Pre Membership Seminar (PMES) facilitated by Balay Mindanao Foundation, Incorporated (BMFI). KAWOSA benefited from the capability building activities facilitated by Balay Mindanao. Seminars that were conducted include bookkeeping, auditing, laws that protect the rights of women and children, agrarian land reforms, and other laws relevant to the needs of the association.  

In June 2005, KAWOSA opened a sari-sari store and a canteen inside an elementary school campus with a capital of Php2,700.00 from the contribution of the twenty-seven (27) members at Php100.00 each. A month after, KAWOSA registered itself in the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

Humble beginnings. the store was initially made f wood. Through perseverance in saving money from their earnings, the store was eventually concretized.

KAWOSA was formalized into an association with a legal personality, having a complete set of officers, written constitution and by-laws, and development plans. The partnership with Balay Mindanaw continued and in September 2005, KAWOSA received livelihood assistance amounting to Php10,000.00 for pig dispersal livelihood project for ten (10) members.

Later, the sari-sari store and the canteen inside the school campus had to be transferred as advised by the new school in-charge. KAWOSA decided to purchase a 100 square meter lot from Mr. & Mrs. Aurelio Camus in the amount of Php 5,000.00, just enough to build a small building strategically located across the school campus. The association continued its hard work in sustaining its economic activities and in 2012 they applied for accreditation with the City Government of Gingoog that paved the way to receiving a Php 340,000.00 livelihood project for corn and swine production from Community Fund And Development (CFAD) through the City Agriculture Office. The CFAD project has continued to date (swine and cattle raising), except for the corn production which was replaced by Falcata.

As an accredited association by the City Government of Gingoog, KAWOSA was invited to participate in the BUB project orientation and workshop. KAWOSA proposed for a consumer store and the project was approved amounting to Php240,000.00, which was funded and implemented through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on December 2014.

he association envisions to the city’s source of pride and aspiration for al other livelihood associations, as much they are continuously learning and growing to better within their local community.

The seed capital fund from DSWD was a substantial amount that KAWOSA decided, through a general assembly, to select few members whom they trust and has the skills, capacity, and commitment as the “management team”. The management team is entrusted with the planning, budgeting, and implementation of the project. One of the major decisions that the management team came up was to construct a two story building. The first floor will house the consumer store and kitchen and the upper floor will serve as the meeting hall of the members.

Currently, the association has a consumer store and micro-lending service. They ventured into ginger farming but it did not prosper, so the members replaced it with a vegetable garden in hopes to generate added income and provide members with fresh vegetables. Capital for food and snacks vending is also   offered to interested members who want to have additional income, utilizing the associations’ kitchen and space (suitable display area) as the store is located in front of the school. With their diverse source of income, KAWOSA fully paid the livelihood grant to DSWD in February 2017.

Regular meetings ensure cooperation, transparency, and unity of members.

The store has undergone renovation which gave it gave added value. The association practiced Christmas as a gift giving month not only to distribute profit shares from the store and micro-lending operations to its members but also to the community who patronized the store. Bags of groceries are given to senior    citizens, barangay tanods, and neighbors of the store who helped oversee the KAWOSA building during the night. Aside from their profit shares, the members are also given cash gifts. But perhaps the best benefit given by KAWOSA to its members is paying for the SSS monthly contribution of each member.

KAWOSA employs five members as treasurer/cashier, inventory clerk, saleslady, collector and manager. Besides being able to generate employment among members, it encourages membership especially the Pantawid beneficiaries.

The association admits that it is a continuing challenge to encourage members to share the vision of KAWOSA, that of attaining the kind of development that each member dream of. For them, there is no substitute for hard work, continuous education and valuing the opportunity given by the government.

The members can only look forward on what the association Photo taken November 2019.

In the near future, KAWOSA hopes to establish a mortuary fund for all members, cash gifts for birthday celebrants, KAWOSA Bigasan, and KAWOSA Mini Pharmacy. They also plan to buy another piece of land to expand their business.

*Originally published at the SLP Lambigit 2020 compendium. Copies available at the Social Marketing Unit.

Story and photos contributed by Maria Estela T. Berdelao, Project Development Officer II

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Former rebels in Impasug-ong receives help from DSWD-X

896 former rebels in Impasug-ong, Bukidnon receive P10,000.00 and family food packs from DSWD to smoothly reintegrate them to their communities.

DSWD Field Office X takes part in the whole-of-nation approach institutionalized by Executive Order No. 70 to address the root causes of communist armed conflict such as poverty, social inequality, and lack of inclusivity, among others.

In Impasug-ong, Bukidnon, 896 former rebels were able to received family food packs and P10,000.00 each from the DSWD Field Office X, the latter’s support to enable them to reintegrate smoothly to their communities.
Mandated to respond to the needs of the former rebels, the DSWD Field Office X, former rebels are provided with social welfare and development interventions emanating from DSWD regular programs: Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, Sustainable Livelihood Program, and Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation.

DSWD Field Office X continues to support the needs of residents in Bukidnon by augmenting resources to their local government units.

FR women and children may also be given immediate interventions such as temporary shelter and debriefing while preparing them and their families for reintegration. Similarly, limited financial assistance for the education of children, medical needs, burial assistance, and food may be availed as well by the FRs.

DSWD Field Office X in partnership with the Armed Forces of the Philippines and local government units distribute government aid to former rebels under the implementation of Executive Order No. 70.

The implementation of E.O. 70 is focused on areas that are reported to have presence of armed conflict, widespread violence or other risks of harm to people or limited access to basic services and/or lack of good governance which may foster insurgency.

The DSWD Field Office X continues to strengthen its programs and services that will respond to the pressing needs of former rebels by providing them access to social services from the government.


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DSWD Field Office X recognizes active partners and exemplars

In celebration to its 70th Founding Anniversary, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office X recently gave honor and distinction to individuals, groups, and organizations whose commitment was to share their time, selves, and resources to ensure that the various sectors benefit from the enhanced service delivery and better opportunities.

From left to right: Undersecretary Camilo Gudmalin, Assistant Secretary Rhea Peñaflor, Regional Director Mari-Flor A. Dollaga, and Undersecretary Felicisimo Budiongan, DSWD FO X is grateful of the ending support extended by the Central Office in its service delivery in Northern Mindanao.

The “Salamat Po” Awards, which is a commendation given by the DSWD Field Office X to its development partners and volunteers who provided assistance in the Department’s delivery of social protection services and achievement of goals, was proudly presented to Mr. Ramon C. Ortega of Land Bank of the Philippines, Dr. Lorraine M. Nery of the City Health Office of Cagayan de Oro, Mr. Teodoro A. Sabuga-a, City Administrator of Cagayan de Oro, Mr. Vicente Gregorio Tomas of the DSWD Field Office NCR, the Local Government Unit of Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte, Atty. Celso L. Vocal, Regional Director of the Commission of Audit, Director Franklin P. Gumapon, Regional Director of Philippine Information Agency – X, Dr. David Mendoza, Assistant Regional Director of the Department of Health – X, Dr. Adriano P. Suba-an, Regional Director of the Department of Health – X, and Director Arnel M. Agabe, Regional Director of the Department of the Interior and Local Government Region X, the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Philippine Coast Guard, Director Rosauro Arnel Q. Gonzales of the Office of the Civil Defense, and Director Manuel Orduna of the National Intelligence Agency – X.

Undersecretary for Standards and Capacity Building Camilo Gudmalin reminds the DSWD FO X workers to serve our clients with passion and compassion.

The first presentation of awards was graced by DSWD Undersecretary Camilo Gudmalin held last February 22, 2021 at DSWD Field Office X, and the second presentation of awards for uniformed government personnel was graced by DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista held last February 24, 2021 at 4th Infantry Division, Cagayan de Oro City.

MGen Andres C Centino PA assures DSWD of their continued support in its program and service delivery in the years to come.

The engagement of the different agencies with the DSWD has been strengthened with a Memorandum of Agreement early on in 2020 addressing the security of DSWD personnel in the conduct of its activities especially on the implementation of the Social Amelioration Program; and provision of safe housing of food and non-food relief goods that expedited and efficient delivery to all municipalities and cities of Region 10. In his message, Secretary Bautista heartfully thanked the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police for supporting the DSWD Field Office X in the implementation of its programs and services in Northern Mindanao.

During the said occasion, Secretary Bautista announced the Presidential appointment as Director IV for Director Mari-Flor A. Dollaga and conducted the oath-taking during the course of the programme.

DSWD Secretary Bautista formally inducted Regional Director Mari-Flor A. Dollaga during the “Salamat Po” Awards.

Director Mari-Flor also sent her expression of gratitude to all its partners whose support have greatly contributed to the success and accomplishments of DSWD Field Office X in 2020.

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DSWD-X helps children in BARMM through BangUn

DSWD Field Office X Regional Director hands over a hot meal to a little child who will be benefitting from BangUn in Lanao del Sur.

In response to mitigate the high incidence of hunger and malnutrition in Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office X, headed by Director Mari-Flor A. Dollaga graced the launching of Bangsamoro Umpungan sa Nutrisyon (BangUn) Project in Bubong and Buadiposo Buntong in Lanao del Sur, yesterday, March 2, 2021.

BangUn is a special project implemented by DSWD which reduces vulnerabilities among malnourished children while providing health support to pregnant and lactating mothers.

The project is implemented in selected municipalities in the region. The project addresses as well the worsening concerns on malnutrition among 0-12 years old children brought about by extreme poverty and on-going armed conflict in BARMM.

Initially, 5,000 children were fed with hot meals during the launching of Bangun in Bubong and Buadiposo Buntong, Lanao del Sur last March 3, 2021.

Having seen the need to empower parents, caregivers, and communities to be involved in addressing hunger, the national government also facilitates in building their resiliency by providing them access to various nutrition-support programs of government agencies.

The DSWD targets five provinces in BARMM, namely, Maguindanao, Sulu, Basilan, Lanao del Sur, and Tawi-tawi – enhancing as well its partnership with various government agencies, and local government units whose constituents will benefit from BangUn.

DSWD-X Regional Director Mari-Flor A. Dollaga graced the launching of BangUn in Lanao del Sur, February 3, 2021.

In the launching yesterday, 5,000 children were fed with hot meals during the ceremony, to officially start the project in the said area. Director Dollaga says that the DSWD Field Office X will continue to prioritize and address the needs of children whose health and nutrition are affected due to extreme poverty and armed conflict. She says that its management will monitor and make proper interventions to help the children in BARMM.

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January 2022