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Pantawid Pamilya conducts Family Day Congress in Torrijos Marinduque

Family Day Congress in Torrijos Marinduque

Torrijos, Marinduque – More than 400 beneficiaries gathered on September 8, 2018, Saturday in Torrijos Municipal Covered Court, Torrijos, Marinduque to attend the Family Day Congress 2018 of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office MIMAROPA with the theme “Pamilyang Pilipino: Nagsusumikap, Nagtutulungan, Nagtatagumpay”. Families from the 25 barangays of Torrijos joined the event, which employed a combination of methods of fun-filled activities and plenary and individual/group discussions to infuse positive life-affirming event for the members of the family.

Mr. Primo Pamintuan, Board Member for Mayor in Torrijos, Marinduque welcomed the beneficiaries of the program to officially start the event. Through the support of the Local Government Unit of Torrijos and the Local Government Unit of Marinduque, the activity was successfully conducted.

In order to ensure a festive vibe, the event was filled with booths and stalls from the different partner agencies of the program such as the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Agriculture (DA), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and Marinduque Police Office which offer free services to the beneficiaries. Other than services from the partner agencies, the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office of Torrijos through Ms. Mary Anne Larracas, MSWDO, set up a Kiddie Corner to offer children toys and free ice cream during the conduct of event. The Pantawid staff, on the other hand, set up a Games Corner which let children and adult play different games such as pabitinpalayok, and other simple ball games. A photo booth was also set up to help the families commemorate the event.

One group sharing their output during the the first part of the discussion

The event was divided into discussion part in the morning and the family day fair in the afternoon.

Pastor Francisco De Jesus of the Norwegian Mission Alliance, one of the CSO partners of the program led the discussion proper on topics: 1)”Ano ang Masayang Pamilya”; and 2.) “Paano masosolusyunan ang di Pagkakaunawaan sa Pamilya”. On the first discussion, all families were grouped into 20 groups and were tasked to illustrate what defines a happy family. Meanwhile, on the second discussion, the parents, teens, and children were separated to discuss the second topic using film showing for the children, role playing for the teens, and plenary discussion for the parents.

On the afternoon, the Family Day Fair commenced to conduct the three major contests of the event such as the Gulayan Cooking Contest, Collage-Making Contest, and the Recycled Art Contest. The Gulayan Cooking Contest were participated by five (5) families. Since the program is strengthening backyard garden of its beneficiaries, all vegetables used in the contest were picked from the backyard garden of the family or their communal garden. The challenge was to prepare a nutritious meal with vegetables as their main ingredient. For the Collage-Making Contest, the eight (8) families who participated created a collage about the theme of the event. Meanwhile, the ten (10) families who participated on the Recycled Art Contest used 80% recyclable or trash materials which they collected to create a material which can be used at home.

Simultaneously, while the three contests were being conducted, other families played Filipino games such as putukan na, rice planting, spoon feeding, egg relay, balloon relay, race around chairs,  calamansi relay, and balloon relay. All booths were open on the afternoon hence, those families who did not join the games can visit them.

Cooperation of the family members during the Gulayan Cooking Contest

According to DSWD MIMAROPA Regional Director, “mahalagang magkaroon ng isang pagdiriwang ang pamilya tulad nitong Family Day Congress upang mapagtibay natin ang kanilang komunikasyon at suporta sa bawat isa, maging responsableng miyembro ng pamilya, at mapagtanto ang kahalagahan ng isang pamilya (it is important to conduct activities such as the Family Day Congress to strengthen communication and support of the family members to each other, to become a responsible member, and to understand the importance of a family).”

Ating hinihikayat ang bawat pamilya na magkaroon ng bukas na komunikasyon sa kanilang tahananan at magsagawa ng iba pang gawain na makatutulong upang mas mapagtibay ang kanilang samahan (we encourage all families to have open communication in their houses and to conduct other activities which can help them strengthen their relationship),” she added. ###

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Pantawid Pamilya visits Tau’t Bato Tribe in Palawan

IP beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries from Sitio Signapan attends FDS

On May 21-25, 2018, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program visited the Indigenous Peoples (IPs) of Brgy. Ransang, Rizal, Palawan.

Before going to Sitio Signapan to meet with the Tau’t Bato tribe beneficiaries, the team stayed for a night in Sitio Ogis where they met Panlima Eldino Goling, one of the tribal leaders in the community. Panlima Eldino, a program beneficiary under RCCT, shared that he was originally from the Tau’t Bato tribe who decided to reside at the foothill of the mountain. According to him, it was hard for the tribe to access health care and education because of their distance hence he decided to build a permanent home in Sitio Ogis with his family.

Pantawid Pamilya with IP beneficiary before going to Sitio Signapan

Since malaria cases are rampant in their area, two of Panlima Eldino’s children became volunteer health workers who conduct Malaria Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) through the Kilusan Ligtas Malaria (KLM) program. Panlima Eldino also sought assistance to KLM to help him build health center and daycare center in his own land. Already on process, Panlima Eldino initiated the construction of the centers to cater to the IPs in Sitio Ogis and to their neighboring sitios. He also started building kubol-kubol or small houses where students or families can live once the centers were built.

From Sitio Ogis, it took the team a 5-hour trek to reach Sitio Signapan. From there, they met 17 members of the Tau’t Bato tribe, who took part in the focus group discussion (FGD) led by the IP focal, Ms. Karen Uson. Since the payout was scheduled a day after the visit of the team, only few beneficiaries attended as some of them already went down from the mountains to be early for tomorrow’s payout. In the discussion conducted, it was learned that most children-grantees in the sitio attend non-formal schools and daycare centers.

Due to the distance of elementary schools in their sitio, most children, whose age grade should be in the elementary level, are likely to attend daycare centers and non-formal education. According to the parents, it is hard for them to let their children study in the lowland since they cannot monitor what they are doing and they fear that something might happen to them. Adding to that is the fact that most of their children help them in farming or kaingin. They suggested to build an elementary school situated in their sitio to make it easier for the students to go to school. Jonathan Diklay, MCCT- Social Welfare Assistant, who is also a member of the tribe, shared that they already started lobbying to the authorities to build a school in their community but the documents submitted were declined to be signed by the barangay officials due to unknown reason. It was agreed upon during the visit that the construction of school in Sitio Signapan will continue its petition with the help of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and Pantawid Pamilya.

Most people of the tribe believe that education is important so that their children can learn how to read, write, and count. They believe that through education no one can take advantage of them. However, they do not consider education as a way to escape poverty or their difficult situation because of their culture. Since they are used to farming and living in the mountains, they still fear that if their children reach a higher level of learning, they will change behaviors and will not go back to their tribe again. This also affects parents’ action towards sending their children to school outside their community. ###

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‘Ka Inato’, creating tasty opportunity for PWDs

Luscious cuisine, festive ambiance, quality food service, this is the usual praise you’ll hear when people indulge in ‘Ka Inato’, restaurant owned by Eric John G. Yayen located in Puerto Princesa Palawan.

But fineness of the restaurant is not limited to satisfying cravings, excellence is upscale to zenith degree when you realized that their advocacy is not just to give you a 5-star restaurant experience, but also to empower Persons with Disabilities — majority of their restaurant staff.

Motivation in hiring PWDs

Being exposed in the wretched reality that their province is the largest in the country, with approximately 800,000 population, but still suffering from limited access to medical services and opportunities for the PWDs, Sir Eric decided to make tracks for the vulnerable sector.

“Truth is, hearing impairment is ranked as 2nd most prevalent disability in the Philippines, and 28% of the population (29,019 people) is suffering from this disability, however, medical assistance for them is really not ample. Imagine, there is only 1 EENT doctor for 2017,000 people and only 1 audiologist for 3,000,000 people. With this reality, I promised myself that I have to do something for them. “explained Sir Eric.

With innate passion to help and boundless motivation to aid the well-being of the PWDs, Eric decided to serve the deaf sector in 2009-2010 when he became the President of the Rotary Club of Puerto Princesa under Rotary International District 3830.

“I adopted one signature project during my term to serve the Deaf community in collaboration jointly with (D.E.A.F Inc.) Deaf Evangelistic Alliance Foundation Inc. in their mission of carrying out hearing test for all day care centers in Northern Palawan.”

Screening will aid in the early identification, early intervention and early rehabilitation of the children with hearing impairment.

“Sometimes, we just blame children for being a slow learner, not knowing that main cause of their learning difficulty is hearing impairment. If we were able to identify this immediately, we can provide proper intervention and early rehabilitation for them,” said Eric.

After Eric’s term as President of Rotary Club, his desire to help PWDs didn’t cease.

“ I told myself that even I’m no longer the President of Rotary Club, in my own initiative, I’ll create opportunity for the PWDs. Thus, Ka Inato came,” exclaimed Eric.

Ka Inato started its operation on January 18, 2018 with only 15 tables and capacity of 60 persons.

Aiming to provide opportunity for PWDs to have equal opportunities for employment and empowering them to help their family as well, Sir Eric started employing 11 PWDs in Ka Inato.

 

“At first, it was really challenging.  I don’t have any idea about their culture. And my former staff have hesitations accepting them. I need to explain to them why I’m employing PWDs. Eventually, they accepted my reason and my advocacy,” said Eric.

 

Small steps towards inclusivity

Success isn’t as simple as wandering in the magnificent islands of Palawan where you have tour guides to escort you in your journey.

In Eric’s expedition towards empowering PWDs, everything was unknown. Usually he trusts his gut instincts and relies on his past experiences.

As he was building the team, challenges inevitably arise.

“There are lots of challenges that we faced as we start employing PWDs. Sometimes, they are very sensitive so we need to be conscious of their feelings and way of thinking. We also need to eliminate discrimination of their co-workers and customers towards them,” told Eric.

Hiring of PWDs also cost additional financial toll, Eric invested in contracting interpreters and studying sign language to fully adapt to the needs of his staff.

“It’s pricey but it’s worth it. Investing in this stuff is okay because I know that we will all benefit from it. I’ll understand them more and they can relate to me more. This will also increase productivity of each of us.”

Through perseverance and unwavering thirst to help PWDs, he managed his new team in his own systematic and resourceful way.

At first, he helped his PWD staff understand the importance of ‘Ka Inato’ as a tourism services facility, its vision and mission, as well as train them with basic knowledge about customer service.

Then, he invested in strengthening their camaraderie, skills and confidence through team building activities.

Third, he created his own communication tool for his deaf staff to help them adjust and deal with customers and co-employees.

For instance, a gentle tap on the shoulder, stomp in the wooden floor, or a simple wave will catch the attention of the person they would like to communicate with.

Then, Eric studied the unique culture of his staff and their life aspirations. He attended their family gatherings and brought them to business establishments and interesting places to widen their perspectives.

Lastly, Eric tried to empower them by allowing them to decide for themselves and letting them participate in their business decision-making.

With his pintsize yet innovative steps he was able to train his staff and establish a commendable team.

Cultivating ‘Malasakit’ culture

Another secret ingredient to the tasty success of ‘Ka Inato’ is their ‘Malasakit’ culture.

“Our restaurant will not prosper without the unwavering support of people around us. Thus, I ensure that ‘Malasakit’ is instilled in each of our staff,” highlighted Eric.

According to Eric, there should be ‘Pagmamalasakit’ in workplace, co-workers, customers, suppliers, community, environment and PWDs to taste the sweet success.

“This values (Malasakit) taught them to think not only of themselves but also of other people. For example, they always ensure that they have empathy for their co-workers and extend a helping hand when in need. Also, quality service is provided to customers because they know that they should add love and care to what we offer in Ka Inato.”

Giving back to the community and taking care of the environment is also part of their system which make them a more admirable and model team.

“We are so blessed that’s why we also need to share what we have to the community and our environment. We conduct outreach programs and tree planting activities.”

Advocating PWD empowerment

Advocating PWD empowerment didn’t end in the four corners of ‘Ka Inato’.

Sir Eric widened his advocacy by sharing his humble experience and journey of giving opportunities for the PWDs during fora and symposiums.

“If we will not give them opportunities, who else will do? It’s fulfilling to help them. It’s more than money,” said sir Eric.

During the 40th National Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation Week Regional Celebration in Mamburao, Occidental Mindoro, sir Eric inspired the participants to create more chances for the PWDs so they can showcase their knowledge, talents and skills which will eventually free them from discrimination and poverty.

I choose to serve the DEAF Community although they are small numbers but they deserve to feel the love of our community, to be productive and sharing their talents, abilities, and to show how wonderful they are if we give them a chance and a chance to change their perspective in life.

I wish to continue my passion on my vocation by cultivating their skills, empower them through training’s and skills development and to inspire others with disability to free themselves from the chain of poverty and hopelessness.

God have blessed me not just to enrich myself, but to be a channel of blessings to others,” ended sir Eric. ###

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More evacuation centers closing as ‘Habagat’ evacuees return home in OcciMin  

Continuous distribution of relief assistance to affected families in Occidental Mindoro

Only two (2) evacuation centers managed by Local Government Unit (LGU) in Occidental Mindoro remain open as temporary housing for 176 families or 824 persons affected by South West Monsoon (Habagat) enhanced by Typhoon ‘Josie’.

At the height of ‘Habagat’, close to 105 evacuation centers were opened to accommodate the affected families.

On the other hand, 78 families or 370 persons are currently staying with their relatives and friends.

Department of Social Welfare and Development MIMAROPA Regional Director Wilma D. Naviamos today said that even the number of evacuation centers decreased the Department is continuously giving disaster assistance to affected families.

“The decrease in opened evacuation centers may be a good sign that affected families are now ready to start anew. We all know that Filipinos are resilient, even how may typhoons and disasters strike us we will recover quickly. But in our part rest assured, that department will not be complacent in providing the necessary assistance to affected families, even they are inside or outside the evacuation centers,” said RD Naviamos.

As of this writing, a total of 250 Family Food Packs are being distributed in the Municipality of Calintaan, Occidental Mindoro.   While 446 Family Food Packs amounting to Php 186, 428.00 were already distributed to Rizal, Paluan, and San Jose Occidental Mindoro.

To date, the Department has recorded a total of 8,817 affected families or 41, 575 affected persons in 92 barangays of OcciMin and OrMin.

DSWD in coordination with Provincial and Municipal Disaster Risk and Management Office and Local Government Unit of Occidental and Oriental Mindoro continuously monitor and validate the affected areas and families in order to provide appropriate assistance for them. ###

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DSWD extends relief assistance to families affected by ‘Habagat’ in OcciMin and OrMin

Distribution of Family Food Packs (FFPs) in Occidental Mindoro

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) MIMAROPA intensifies the operation of its Quick Response Team (QRT) in responding to the needs of affected families in Occidental and Oriental Mindoro due to Southwest Monsoon or ‘Habagat’ enhanced by Tropical Depression ‘Josie’.

DSWD also maintains its vigilant coordination with LGUs in Occidental and Oriental Mindoro for the provision of relief assistance.

As of July 24, 12 noon, the DSWD has distributed a total of 162 food packs amounting to Php 67, 716.00 in the municipalities of Rizal and Paluan Occidental Mindoro while prepositioned goods in municipalities of Sablayan and Mamburao are scheduled to be distributed today.

As of press time, the Department has recorded a total of 7,165 affected families or 32,812 affected persons in 68 barangays of OcciMin and OrMin.

Of this data, a total of 1,890 families or 8,734 persons are staying in 30 evacuation centers in Occidental Mindoro. On the other hand, 591 families or 2,768 persons are currently staying with their relatives and friends.

DSWD MIMAROPA Regional Director Wilma D. Naviamos assured the preparedness of the Department to provide assistance to affected families in Occidental Mindoro especially after it has been declared in state of calamity.

“The department has always available stockpile of Family Food Packs per SWADT offices of MIMAROPA region and 200 to 300 prepositioned goods per strategic cluster municipality and identified Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Area (GIDA) /critical areas.  So during disaster, assistance can be given immediately to affected families,” said RD Naviamos.

DSWD also converged with the Local Government Unit and other partner-agencies to expedite aid to affected citizens.

“Right now, we are closely coordinating with the LGU for the augmentation of resources and extending aid to affected families due to ‘Habagat’. In fact, as of this moment, there’s an ongoing DSWD relief distribution in Occidental Mindoro,” said RD Naviamos.

Child-friendly spaces were also set up in evacuation centers in Occidental Mindoro to provide games, informal education and other activities for displaced children.

“In times of disaster, we shouldn’t forget the wellness of vulnerable sectors such as children, senior citizens, persons with disabilities and women. The department ensures that friendly spaces are provided for them,” sited RD Naviamos.

RD Naviamos also reminded the public to become vigilant especially the province has been declared in state of calamity due to continuous heavy rains and flash floods.

Four (4) casualties were reported in Sablayan, Occidental Mindoro. Of four casualties: two (2) were victims of landslide; one (1) was strucked by a falling tree; and one (1) drowned.  On the other hand, two (2) persons were reported missing in Mansalay, Oriental Mindoro.

“We encourage the public to remain safe. If you were advised to evacuate your place, please do so in order to avoid further casualties.”

To date, there are available stockpile of 33, 470 family food packs in all Social Welfare and Development Team (SWADT) and Regional Warehouses of MIMAROPA.

Also the Regional Office is scheduled to repack additional 1, 366 family food packs to be delivered in affected areas.

Quick Response Team will continue providing reports about the status of affected population and disaster operations.   ###

 

 

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Work Now Pay Later Scheme– the Secret to the Success of Road Implementation in Agojo

The only way used by the residents of Sawang going to the center of the barrio to which daycare center, elementary school, health center and barrio hall are situated is the Sawang/Datag Road, and people from the southern part of Barangay Agojo who wants to go to mainland Looc during Monsoon/Typhoon season is through the same road, the Sawang/Datag Road. Using this road during such season is a dangerous journey not only for children and women but to the elderlies as well.

Flood during rainy season reaches to 3-4 feet that is why pupils will absent in their class most of the time during this season that leads to declining grades of the pupils. Aside from that, this road becomes muddy that when floodwater subsides, mud is knee depth. Agricultural products and marine products by the fishermen cannot be peddled to the mainland due to bad condition of the road, and if luckily reaches the market in Looc proper, it is sold in much lower price because it is not fresh anymore and even in deteriorating condition, that really affect the economic survival of the people of Agojo. Patients and pregnant women cannot immediately brought to the hospital which is again located in mainland Looc and sometimes it resulted to worsening condition or death. Local and foreign tourist and even visitors from Looc are discouraged to visit Agojo because of the unfavorable condition of Sawang/Datag Road.

Sufferings of people of Agojo from this Sawang/Datag Road is prevalent for a long time. According to Ruby Mondia, a resident of Sitio Sawang and became Community Volunteer (BAC member) “simula pa noong bata pa ako at nag-aaral ng elementarya hanggang noong akoy nagkaanak, di ko naranasan magsuot man lang ng sapatos dahil sa putik ng daanan galing dito sa aming sitio papuntang Barrio. Hanggang yung mga ank ko ang nag aaral at hinanhatid ko sa school ay ganun padin ang kalagayan ng kalsadang iyan”. She was narrating her dilemma while crying. She added, “ayaw ko na sana maranasan ng mga anak ko ang mga naranasan ko dati pero wala naman akong magawa”. The same sentiment was expressed by other resident living in Sawang and Datag (adjacent sitio) Lito Santillan. They added that some of the residents of Sitio Sawang sustained injuries beacause of accidents in the same road that was confirmed by Brgy. Secretary Jovel Socito based on the Barangay Tanod’s logbook.

RAY OF HOPE

All the worries of the Residents of Agojo was turned into excitement when their Barangay was prioritized during MIBF in KC-NCDDP 3rd Cycle and the project proposal submitted for prioritization was for the concreting of 1.3 Km Sawang/Datag Road with RCBC and Stone Masonry. Majority of the Community Volunteer are from that Sitio who were most affected by the Sawang/Datag Road problem. They are much willing to help and work for the fulfillment and realization of their dreams to have a concrete road to alleviate the hardships of the people for so many years. The Sub-projects has a budget allocation of Php 5,603,574.00 and it was started on November 7, 2017.

 

SUB-PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION PROBLEM

Sub-project allocation for the Sawang/Datag amounted to Php 5,603,574.00 but half of that budget cost was for the hauling cost of materials. There were no construction materials available in Barangay Agojo like sand, gravel, cement, stone (rubbles) and round bar iron. All these materials were purchased and hauled/transported from Looc mainland to Barangay Agojo by boat that cost a lot, aside from the risk from strong winds and rough to very rough sea caused by monsoon and typhoon season.

Apart from hauling problems by the suppliers, weather conditions and low tide dilemma, lack of laborers contributed to the delay of implementation the Sub-Project. Additional problem cropped up prior to the Sub-project Implementation when Suppliers are hesitant to bid because of the huge expenses that they will incur in delivering the materials, the risk and safety of their personnel and supplies is also at stake during transporting of the same. Also, no pump boats are allowed to travel during typhoon and monsoon season because the sea is rough due to strong winds that was the policy of Philippine Coast Guard and Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office.

Laborers are also scarce in Barangay Agojo, because of its location which is near to the island of Boracay, workers are enticed to work in that island which is paying double rather than working in KALAHI Sub-Project which is just paying Php 250 (Municipal Rate). Barangay Agojo already delivered its Bayanihan commitment worth Php 200,000 but it not enough since work to be done is huge especially on the embankment this is to raise the road so that flooding will not be a problem anymore.

 

“WORK NOW PAY LATER SCHEME” PROPOSAL

In the middle of Sub-Project implementation when the Community Volunteer were able to hurdle many problems related to supply of materials, weather conditions, lack of laborers and failure in bidding; Another major problem cropped up, the budget for the laborers for first tranche was already consumed and the next budget for labor is to be requested in 2nd and final tranche. The materials were available but there is no available budget for the payment of the laborers to sustain the remaining number of days of work. The requested fund for 2nd and final tranche is about 1.2 million and it will take many weeks before it can be downloaded from the Regional Office and these are still subject to review

During 4th Barangay Assembly last February 2018, issues and concerns with regards to the halt of work on the Sub-Project and labor cost were tackled by ACT, MCT and BLGU officials. According to the Municipal Area Coordinator Neil Fopalan, there is a need to finish the Sub-Project before the timeline of Asian Development Bank on April 2018. According to him, failure to obligate the fund for 2nd and final tranche before the deadline, will mean fund for the requested tranche shall not be downloaded to the community bank account, which means that in order to finish the project the M/BLGU will shoulder the remaining balance for the project cost to complete the project 100%. According to the Technical Facilitator Cyril Gado, requirements for the request of 2nd and final tranche is to have 60% Physical accomplishment, and according to him, the Physical Accomplishment of Agojo is just 50% below the required target of Kalahi-CIDSS.

Barangay Captain Minnie Torrente challenged her constituents to come up with a positive action in order continue the implementation of the project and ultimately finish the Sub-Project before the timeline even if budget for Labor is still to be requested and soon to be downloaded and she fears also that weather condition might change from good to worse for the next month, which could cause further delay in the implementation.

Community Volunteers and willing citizen responded to the call of the ACT/MCT and BLGU by presenting themselves to help resume work or volunteer to work as soon as possible for continuation of Sub-Project Implementation even if the payment/salary for laborer is to be paid after the downloading of funds for 2nd and final tranche, just to meet the timeline of ADB and the project could be used as soon possible by the people. That proposal was approved by the Barangay Assembly they called that scheme “WORK NOW PAY LATER”. Under this arrangement

Approved by the community, CV’s and Laborers will do the following:

  • Mag tratrabaho sila habang hinihintay ang pag download ng 2nd and Final tranche na kung saan doon kukunin ang kanilang pambayad.
  • Mag papaluwal si Kapitan ng sarili niyang pera para doon sa mga emergency na pangangailangan ng mga trabahador.
  • Mag tratrabaho ang 15 o mahigit pa na trabahador na ayon sa kanilang kagustuhan at walang sapilitan
  • Kahit linggo ay magtratrabaho ang mga laborer na gusto para lang matapos ang project bago sumapit ang deadline
  • Mag dodonate ng meryenda sa mga trabahador ang ang mga pamilya na malapit at madadaanan ng ginagawang kalsada.
  • Magbibigay din ng meryenda sa mga trabahador ang mga kagawad at iba pang gustong mag donate nito.

For the people of Barangay Agojo, MONEY IS SECONDARY and what is important to them is their commitment to finish the Sub-Project as soon as possible for the benefits of the community.

 

BEAT THE DEADLINE

Because of the willingness and sacrifices of the people of Barangay Agojo using the scheme

“WORK NOW PAY LATER” and able to fulfill the following

  • Installed the stone masonry on the side of the concreted pavement
  • Box Culvert was completed within 3 days
  • Riprapping was accomplished by one week
  • From 50% Physical Accomplishment they were able to complete the concreting of the road by 15 days.

The 2nd phase of Sub-Project Implementation go on smoothly and finished it last March 16, 2018 and inaugurated April 20, 2018. Fund for 2nd and final tranche was downloaded to the Community Bank account on April 3, 2018 and all the Laborers were paid immediately (good for 30 days works) and including the Suppliers of the materials.

The commitment of the people of Barangay Agojo paid off and they can use the SP earlier than expected and the whole community are happy to their accomplishments. “Completing the Sub-Project on time is much sweeter than the salary we received, but we got it both “Dominador Gregorio Jr. (Foreman) said.

 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

When the Sub-Project was finished, the lives of the people of Agojo changed, according to Kagawad Segundino Buenaventura these are the changes happened in their community:

  • Maaga nang nakakapasok ang mga bata sa iskwelahan na safe at naka sapatos na
  • Madali nang sunduin ang mga bata sa school ng mga nanay at tatay sakay sa mga motorsiklo
  • Hindi na nalalamog and mga gulay at prutas kasama na ng mga lamang dagat papunta ng palengke ng Looc at dahil diyan lahat ng ito ay nabebenta sa mataas na presyo
  • Madali nang madala sa hospital ang mga may sakit at buntis.
  • Dumami na ang mga turista at madami na ang bumili ng lupa dito sa Agojo.
  • May bumabyahe nang mga single na motor at tricycle para maghatid ng mga bata sa school at mga pasahero
  • May peace of mind na at di na nag aalala sa mga anak na pumapasok sa daycare at elementary school.
  • Maliwanag na maglakad sa gabi at masarap na mamasyal

 

TEARS OF JOY

Sub-Project of Barangay Agojo was built by unity and sacrifices of the people. As a result, the finished road according to the people is “Sadya-sadya guid” (beautiful) “ag tibay guid” (well-built/quality work”. During inauguration last April 20, 2018, community volunteers specially the Project Implementation Team (PIT) Head Victor Tayco cried while narrating the hardships they experienced during implementation of the SP. He thanked everybody for the help and he said, “Why I am crying? It is a tears of joy” he said. He is happy because the project was finished and the people of Agojo specifically the children will never experience the hardships of travelling the muddy road anymore, but instead they can now use their bikes and can wear their shoes everyday going to school.

 

RECOGNITION BY THE STAKEHOLDERS

The Municipal Mayor of Looc, Hon. Leila M. Arboleda expressed gratitude to the Community Volunteer for the successful SPI and thanking the Laborers and the people of Agojo for their unselfish effort to work even if salary was not yet available only after the downloading of 2nd and Final Tranche. Because of their noble deeds, all Community volunteers were given a plaque of Recognition/Appreciation by the Mayor.

As a result of the extraordinary accomplishments of Barangay Agojo to beat the timeline of Sub-Project Implementation compelled by the funder, it was considered as a contributing factor why the Municipality of Looc was given again a BONUS CYCLE by KC-NCDDP under the THEMATIC/CDD Cycle.

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DSWD Kalahi CIDSS orients TWG on Thematic CDD

Pasig City, Metro Manila- Technical Working Group (TWG) who will serve as guide to the Local Government Units on the implementation of Thematic (Community-Driven Development) CDD pilot project are gathered last July 16-17, 2018 at the Linden Suites to discuss how Thematic CDD will be implemented and how the team can fully provide technical support to the LGUs in the implementation of this pilot project.

The Thematic CDD is a new pilot project of DSWD Kalahi CIDSS wherein the LGUs will select a concept based on their development plans in which they will incorporate the process of CDD to the chosen theme that they will implement.

Deputy Regional Program Manager for Kalahi CIDSS Maria Liza Peraren discuss with the TWG the Thematic CDD Concept

Area Coordinators, Municipal Financial Analyst, and Technical Facilitator comprised the TWG. On the two-day activity, the Regional Program Management Office of DSWD Kalahi CIDSS discussed with the TWG the Thematic CDD and their roles in its implementation and the DSWD promotive programs directives.

The TWG discussed the challenges they faced on their previous implementation of Kalahi CIDSS NCDDP and how they can improve/prevent these challenges in the LGUs’ implementation of Thematic CDD. Moreover, the TWG crafted their workplan on the Thematic CDD implementation.

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Fear No More

“ Taong 2010, bago akong sesaryan, binuhat ako nang asawa ko papunta sa Barangay Hall, mga 3PM dahil rumaragasa na yung tubig, at mataas na yung baha. Sobrang takot ko noon dahil hindi ako marunong lumangoy, inisip ko baka ako naman yung mamatay.” [It was year 2010, i was newly cesarean and my husband carry me to the barangay hall. It was 3pm and the flood was getting higher. I was so afraid because I do not know how to swim, I was thinking i might die. ]

 Irene Milagrosa, 51, a resident of Barangay Pili recounted her experience before as she faced the cruel and ravaging Looc River that had also took the lives of the people dear to her in year 1988. Irene recalled when she received a call in Manila from her family in Romblon which shook her from her seat. Their house was taken by the huge flood together with his nephew and brother-in-law.

From then on, Irene always feared for huge floods whenever their community is drummed by heavy rains and severe weathers.

 

Danger amidst thriving community

Roughly three (3) kilometers from Poblacion, Barangay Pili is considered as one of the poorest Barangays in the Municipality of Looc. Nevertheless, it is blessed with fertile land and enough water coming from the Mt. Bongan-bongan that allowed the people to produce crops mostly of rice, banana, and rootcrops to feed their family and their community.

The people of Pili have a dream of an improved life by producing more crops and by sending their children to school. However, on the onset of heavy raining, their crops die and their children are not able to attend school. Heavy raining also raises the water in Looc River which then poses threat to the lives and livelihood of the people in Pili.

Over the years, the flooding gets worse and eventually erodes huge parts of the road used by people to transport their produce and by the pupils to go to their school.

Amelia Ibabao, 59, BSPMC Secretary of Pili, narrated how she felt whenever she crosses the said road before. “Mahirap dumaan nakaka-kaba at nakakatakot, dahil ang lupa kasi unti-unti siyang nakakabkab, lalo na kapag umuulan at bumabaha.” [It was difficult to cross, I was noervous and scared because the path is slowly eroding, mostly when its raining and flooding].

Parents and teacher will always fear for the safety of their children, especially during the severe rainy days.

Levie Palacio, the principal of Pili Elementary school had been worrisome to the pupils during breaks and after class as many of them play in the river. “May mga tanod na nag babantay doon (sa tabing ilog) para mapigilian ang mga bata,” said Principal Levie. Yet, she recalled that the pupils still jumped into the water as if there are no threats to them being taken away by the strong river currents. [there are security officers guarding (by the riverside) to prevent the children from playing there.]

More so, Principal Levie also shared the worries of the parents whenever heavy rains started pouring. “Pag uumulan na, sinusundo na ng mga magulang ang anak nila, wala naman kaming magagawa kaya hinahayaan na namin.” [When heavy rains started pouring, the parents start to fetch their children, we cannot do anything about it so we just allow them the parents to do so.]

During days of continuous raining, the school mandatorily suspends classes to prevent casualties among the students.

Principal Levie added, that she was grateful whenever the pupils are able to attend class on rainy weathers, but they still fear for the safety of their pupils as the river may rise anytime.

 

Standing up for safety

 The continuous erosion of the riverbank  and the threat brought by the flooding of Looc River had made the people of Pili anxious about their family’s and livelihood’s safety. When Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan, Comprehensive and integrated delivery of social services (Kalahi CIDSS) came to barangay pili, the people had identified their most pressing needs through the process of Participatory Situational Analysis (PSA) wherein the people will analyze the root causes of their problems and identify the solution to these root causes.

The flooding caused by Looc River had topped the problems faced by the community. In that case, the people had identified the long-term solution to their problem which is the extension of the flood control.

It was never an easy task, as attested by Segundino Nadal Jr., the BSPMC of Barangay Pili.

His dreary eyes speak of the difficulty they faced during the project implementation as he recalled how they built the project. “Two weeks kaming naghukay, at sa panahong yun, ay nagkaroon pa nang baha at landslide. Ang hirap nang pinagdaanan namin, kasi maghuhukay ulit kami. Pero hindi kami sumuko, nagpatuloy padin kami.” [ We’ve been digging for two weeks, and by that time, a landslide and flooding had occured. It was very difficult becasue we need to start digging again.]

The mishap caused by the landslide had caused a delay in the construction. However, for BSPMC Segundino, it was not a setback. “Sa kabila nang mga kinaharap na problema, mabilis padin yung naging trabaho dahil nagtra-trabaho din yung foreman namin. Magagaling din yung mga laborer namin. Nakatulong din na pinapa-snacks nang mga tao at nang Barangay ang mga nagtra-trabaho. Siniguro ko din na lage akong nandon para ma-monitor yung proyekto at mga trabahador at volunteers.” [Despite the hardships we’ve faced, the work has been relatively fast because our foreman also worked in the project. Our laborers were also excellent workers. More so, the people and the barngay officials gave snacks for the laborers. Nevertheless, I always ensure that I am present in the project site to monitor the laborers and my co-volunteers.]

Not everything went smoothly during the implementation as, PIT head Jenny Fontamillas shared how she mediated the conflict among the laborers. “Nagrereklamo sa schedule nang pa-trabaho (ang mga laborers), pero naipaliwanag naman nang maayos, at naintindihan naman nila na kailangan bigyan nang pagkakataon ang iba nagusto din magtrabaho (sa sub-project).”

PIT Jenny also noted how her family complains as she usually go to attend the Kalahi CIDSS meeting. She noted how her children complains about her being away and working for kalahi without pay. Nevertheless, Fontamillas explained to her family how she enjoyed her work as a kalahi cidss volunteer and how she appreciates the praise and gratitude of the people because of the sacrifices she made as a kalahi cidss community volunteers.

 

Safe at last

 At present, the people of Pili, no longer worry about rising water during severe weathers. Classes are no longer cancelled and the people’s crops reach the market place even during severe rainy weathers. Most importantly, the people realized that their unified efforts could make a difference in their community.

“Namulat yung mga tao na pwede sila makagawa nang project. At makikita mo talaga yung difference nang project ng KALAHI at ibang project ng gobyerno, sa quality.” [The people are enlightened that they can have a project built.A nd you can see the difference of KALAHI and other government projects in terms of its quality.]  Barangay Chairperson of Pili Rey Dalisay said as he recalled how he saw the bayanihan spirit of the people of Pili even after the completion of the flood control.

The .80 Meters Flood Control Project, truly made a difference in the lives of the residents of Barangay Pili. Despite the flood and landslide that occurred during the implementation, and the misunderstanding among volunteers and workers, they persevered and rose above their situation. Their sacrificial investment of time and effort just to finish the sub-project, motivated with their own and their children’s welfare and safety had made the sub-project into fruition and can be summarized with BSPMC Chairperson Nadal’s note–“the Kalahi Experience was all worth it.”

The Barangay officials having witnessed the practice of good governance during the implementation of the sub-project, which led to the volunteers and the Barangay officials in pursuing funding for their non-prioritized sub-project during the MIBF-PRA.

The flood control built through the efforts of the people of Barangay Pili

They lobbied the sub-project to the Local Government Unit and were granted with multiple sub-projects, which funding even extended to the provincial level as Governor Eduardo Firmalo himself offered to fund the extension of the flood control.

With grateful hearts, the people of Pili continue to hope for more projects from KALAHI-CIDSS as they see it of good quality, and because of the sense of involvement and ownership that they felt. The people together with the Barangay Officials, assured that they will continue to work together as one community towards the development of their Barangay.

Now, Irene and the rest of the people of Pili will no longer have to worry on their lives and property’s safety as the flood control has finally been built and is protecting the people from the ravaging waters of Looc River.

With a wide smile on her face, Irene said, “Wala na kaming takot ngayon, at para mapangalagaan ang proyekto, kami po ay lagi namang tumutulong sa mga bayanihan na pinapatawag nang barangay sa kalahi man o hindi.” [We are no longer have fear, and to help with the maintenance of the project, we will always assist in the bayanihan in the barangay whether it is for Kalahi or not.]

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