Archive | February 5th, 2015

DSWD intensifies campaign against human trafficking

Building a better community. Attending OSYs plot their recommended projects to support the well-being of their health, education, community participation and sports during the Community Orientation on Human Trafficking in El Nido, Palawan.

Building a better community. Attending OSYs plot their recommended projects to support the well-being of their health, education, community participation and sports during the Community Orientation on Human Trafficking in El Nido, Palawan.

El Nido, Palawan – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), in collaboration with the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office (MSWDO) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) conducted a Community Orientation on Human Trafficking to 50 out-of-school youths (OSYs), last January 29, 2015 in this municipality.

“The OSYs are prone to becoming victims of human trafficking,” said Concepcion Deymos, Youth Focal of DSWD Region IV – MiMaRoPa. The Orientation-cum-workshop was conducted to equip the audience with knowledge on RA 9208 or The Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003. The Act refers to trafficking in persons as the recruitment, obtaining, hiring, providing, offering, transportation, transfer, maintaining, harboring or receipt of persons with or without the victims consent or knowledge.

As of 2014, MiMaRoPa recorded a total of four underaged individuals who were victims of trafficking in person. Most of the victims were that of illegal recruitment to work as house-help or bar entertainers.

Madaling mabiktima ang mga kabataan, lalo na ang mga out-of-school youths, (the youth are easy targets [for traffickers], especially when they are out of school)” said Nesba J. Bacuteng, Assistant Provincial Prosecutor of Palawan. “Kaya maganda na alam na nila, sa ngayon pa lang ano ba ang Human trafficking, paano ito maiiwasan, at kanino maaring magsumbong, (it is better that they learn of human trafficking at this point, how to not become a victim and know who to ask for help),” Bacuteng added.

Following the orientation was a workshop where participants were asked to list down programs or projects that will cater to the well-being of their health, education, community involvement and overall welfare as an individual. “Ang gusto po namin ay makapagpatuloy ng pag-aaral para hindi kami naka-tambay lang, (we wish to continue our studies so we don’t remain idle),” said Christian Alcantara, 24, one of the OSYs.

A hand-over of the workshop output to Mayor Gacot-Lim as part of the pledge of commitment was also conducted. Mayor Lim promised to look into the workshop output and include the recommended programs/projects for the OSYs. “I assure you that we will work on turning your proposals into reality,” she said.

Informed leaders

                Some 100 barangay captains and local social workers convened for an open forum on trafficking. “We’ve also gathered the local leaders to keep them informed of what [trafficking] is about,” said Deymos, who also added that a “more informed” officials will have a better response mechanism to trafficked victims.

The attending participants were encouraged to support the combat against trafficking. El Nido, being one of the top tourist destinations in the Palawan is prone to human trafficking. Local leaders are expected to pass an ordinance requiring business establishments to attend an orientation on Human Trafficking. “The proposed orientation will help strengthen the mechanism on reporting human trafficking cases, and solidify the existing Local Committee Against Trafficking,” said Deymos.

DSWD provides assistance to victims of human trafficking through its program called Recovery and Re-integration Program for Trafficked Persons (RRPTP). The program was pilot-tested in the region in 2011 and has helped in the rehabilitation process of trafficked persons.

The DSWD-led orientation also covered discussions on RA 9775 or the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009; RA 9344 or the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006; and RA 7610 or the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.###

 

 

 

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I’m a 4Ps scholar

They call us the lower class, the twerps, a burden to the government. They dub us dependents, supposedly merely after government doles. They call us the poorest of the poor, the beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

Let me tell you people, we are less fortunate but we are not stupid. Yes, we are receiving a certain amount from the government, to alleviate our current situation, which is the program’s primary objective. But, is it really a basis for social discrimination and bullying?

I am a 4Ps scholar, one of the beneficiaries of the Expanded Students’ Grant-In-Aid Program for Poverty Alleviation (ESGP-PA), to be particular about it. So, what do you think? I am giving you the freedom to say something about it. Are you one of those judgmental persons or among the rational ones?

When I first heard about the opportunity to avail myself of the ESGP-PA, I thought of my dreams becoming possible. It was as if chance had found a deserving student who desired to make a difference in her life, in her family, and in her society. Eventually, I became a lucky grantee. I consider that a significant gift that drew me closer to achieving my aspirations.

For me, tuition and other school fees, academic and extracurricular expenses, the purchase of textbooks, the lack of stipend and transportation fare ceased to be constant worries in the pursuit of a college degree. Each grantee is entitled to P30,000 per semester, and that has been making a difference.

But, the difference includes social discrimination and bullying. Some fellow students say something to this effect: “Those 4Ps scholars, they already have the scholarship, and they’re also given special treatment.” Those students who belong to well-off families look down on us when they learn that we are ESGP-PA grantees, as though we were unsightly.

The worst thing was when, in class, a professor presented his opinion on the program’s “dependency” on the government and how our expenses as grantees were being shouldered by taxpayers including himself, all because of irresponsible parenthood. His opinion just seemed so biased. It appeared that he did not realize: What could this mean, how could this affect, an ESGP-PA grantee in his class?

These have happened, not just to me, but also to my fellow 4Ps scholars. It’s like being a 4Ps scholar is a sin, that being less fortunate is a sin.

We are not the proponents of this program; we are merely the chosen recipients. I’ve come to think: What if everyone is a 4Ps beneficiary? Will their views still be the same? Will the treatment be just and fair? Why does social hierarchy matter a lot in building a community? Irrationality will never unite a country.

This is not all about irresponsible parenthood; this is reality. Poverty is present in the country. We are not building a poverty society. In fact, we strongly want to get out of that status. We strive to lift our families out of poverty and eventually give back to the economy.

I feel that I should just shut my mouth whenever they throw gibberish at us and degrade the ESGP-PA. Yet my open mind cannot fathom the fact that those words come from supposedly educated people who should know better than us. It is just a manifestation that someone can be educated but not learned.

Still, I extend my thanks to the government for providing a great opportunity for deserving students to complete tertiary-level education. I will focus on the positive goals. We’ll eradicate poverty; we don’t need irrationality. We are less fortunate, but we are not stupid.

The article is written by Rose J. Bongon, 20,  a third-year IT student at Camarines Sur Polytechnic Colleges. She is associate editor of The Spark (the official CSPC school–community publication). This article was published in Youngblood section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Posted in UncategorizedComments (0)

I’m a 4Ps scholar

They call us the lower class, the twerps, a burden to the government. They dub us dependents, supposedly merely after government doles. They call us the poorest of the poor, the beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

Let me tell you people, we are less fortunate but we are not stupid. Yes, we are receiving a certain amount from the government, to alleviate our current situation, which is the program’s primary objective. But, is it really a basis for social discrimination and bullying?

I am a 4Ps scholar, one of the beneficiaries of the Expanded Students’ Grant-In-Aid Program for Poverty Alleviation (ESGP-PA), to be particular about it. So, what do you think? I am giving you the freedom to say something about it. Are you one of those judgmental persons or among the rational ones?

When I first heard about the opportunity to avail myself of the ESGP-PA, I thought of my dreams becoming possible. It was as if chance had found a deserving student who desired to make a difference in her life, in her family, and in her society. Eventually, I became a lucky grantee. I consider that a significant gift that drew me closer to achieving my aspirations.

For me, tuition and other school fees, academic and extracurricular expenses, the purchase of textbooks, the lack of stipend and transportation fare ceased to be constant worries in the pursuit of a college degree. Each grantee is entitled to P30,000 per semester, and that has been making a difference.

But, the difference includes social discrimination and bullying. Some fellow students say something to this effect: “Those 4Ps scholars, they already have the scholarship, and they’re also given special treatment.” Those students who belong to well-off families look down on us when they learn that we are ESGP-PA grantees, as though we were unsightly.

The worst thing was when, in class, a professor presented his opinion on the program’s “dependency” on the government and how our expenses as grantees were being shouldered by taxpayers including himself, all because of irresponsible parenthood. His opinion just seemed so biased. It appeared that he did not realize: What could this mean, how could this affect, an ESGP-PA grantee in his class?

These have happened, not just to me, but also to my fellow 4Ps scholars. It’s like being a 4Ps scholar is a sin, that being less fortunate is a sin.

We are not the proponents of this program; we are merely the chosen recipients. I’ve come to think: What if everyone is a 4Ps beneficiary? Will their views still be the same? Will the treatment be just and fair? Why does social hierarchy matter a lot in building a community? Irrationality will never unite a country.

This is not all about irresponsible parenthood; this is reality. Poverty is present in the country. We are not building a poverty society. In fact, we strongly want to get out of that status. We strive to lift our families out of poverty and eventually give back to the economy.

I feel that I should just shut my mouth whenever they throw gibberish at us and degrade the ESGP-PA. Yet my open mind cannot fathom the fact that those words come from supposedly educated people who should know better than us. It is just a manifestation that someone can be educated but not learned.

Still, I extend my thanks to the government for providing a great opportunity for deserving students to complete tertiary-level education. I will focus on the positive goals. We’ll eradicate poverty; we don’t need irrationality. We are less fortunate, but we are not stupid.

Rose J. Bongon, 20, is a third-year IT student at Camarines Sur Polytechnic Colleges. She is associate editor of The Spark (the official CSPC school–community publication) and blogs at https://miraqrose.wordpress.com/.

Reposted from Young Blood, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Thursday, February 5, 2015.

Read more: http://opinion.inquirer.net/82291/im-a-4ps-scholar#ixzz3QpoJbh3D

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