DSWD implements Government Internship Program; employs 80 youths

Legazpi City—The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V employed 80 youths in its offices and various local government units (LGUs) as part of the annual Government Internship Program (GIP).

The GIP is implemented by the DSWD in its 16 regional offices. There are 19 GIP participants deployed at DSWD Regional Office V while the others are scattered all over Bicol region (except for Masbate and Camarines Norte) at the local government units (LGUs).

GIP is one of the components of the Kabataan 2000 program of the government. It aims to provide in-school youths and out-of-school youths an opportunity to learn about the government and develop skills by hands-on experience to work in the government which they can use if they decide to join public service in the future.

“The GIP is also a chance for the youth participants to learn life skills in the workplace and earn additional money to defray a part of their school fees,” Dir. Arnel Garcia said.

The target participants are selected based on the following qualifications: a) 18-25 years old; b) Educational background (High School graduates, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Certificate holders, Alternative Learning System (ALS) certificate holders); c) in good health condition; d) monthly family income not more than Php8,022.00; e) Pag-asa Youth Association of the Philippines (PYAP) member; f) Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiary.

Lloyd Lara, DSWD Region V youth focal person, was able to identify and assess a total 120 GIP applicants last March.

Under this program, the GIP participants will receive PhpP217.50 daily stipend for 30 days based on the 75% of the current regional minimum wage rate. Payment will be computed based on the actual working days rendered and accomplishment report is required as basis for payment.

The GIP participants can claim their stipend after completing 30 days at the DSWD Region V while a cash payout will be scheduled for those deployed at the LGUs.

The program already commenced last April 16, 2018 and is expected to end on May 28, 2018. They are expected to perform office work, perform community work and assist in the implementation of DSWD programs and projects.

Radley Nuñez of Malinao, Albay is one of this year’s GIP beneficiaries who is currently deployed at the DSWD’s Office of the Regional Director. He is expected to receive a total of PhP6,525.00 if there are no attritions during the 30-daywork duration where he plans to buy school supplies and entrust the remaining money to his parents.

“Ang GIP ay isang paraan ng pamahalaan para ihanda kaming mga kabataan sa pagiging future public servants (The GIP is one of the government’s way to prepare our youth as future public servants),” Nuñez said.

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DSWD Region V warns public of epal

Legazpi City—The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V advised the public of incumbent government officials claiming credit for its existing programs in relation to the forthcoming elections.

This followed after incidents were reported by the DSWD field workers in Camarines Sur that the Emergency Shelter Assistance (ESA) of DSWD appeared to be funded by a certain politician that has announced to run in the 2019 local elections.

Ang pera mula DSWD ay ginagamit sa pamumulitika. Ang akala ng mga tao ay pera ito ng pulitiko (The DSWD fund is being used for politicking. People think it is the politician’s money),” DSWD Dir. Arnel Garcia said.

He announced earlier this month that the DSWD will not tolerate any form of propaganda at the expense of its programs and services for the poor. He has ordered its field workers to closely monitor the ongoing ESA payout and provide assistance to the local government units (LGUs).

Huwag lokohin ang mahihirap dahil alam ng taumbayan kung kanino galling ang pondo ng ESA. Hindi po yan galling sa bulsa ng sinuman. Ang DSWD ay nagpadaloy lamang ng pondo ng bayan (Do not mislead the poor because the people know the source of fund for ESA. The funds do not come from anyone’s pocket. The DSWD only disbursed the people’s money,” Dir. Garcia added.

ESA is the provision of limited financial or material assistance (or both) to family-victims of disasters whose houses are either totally or partially damaged. The per capita cost ranges from ₱10,000.00 to ₱30,000.00 per family.

The aftermath of typhoon Nina in 2016 left thousands of Bicolanos in Catanduanes, Albay and Camarines Sur homeless. To aid the affected families, the ESA funds were downloaded to the municipal/city local government units (LGUs) for the totally damaged houses while the provincial LGUs received the cash assistance for the partially damaged houses. DSWD tapped the LGUs to facilitate the payout to the ESA beneficiaries. The ESA payout schedule is set in two batches which will be announced by the respective LGUs. To date, DSWD released a total of PhP 2,412,450,000.00 to the LGUs for ESA payout.

On the other hand, the “Bawal and Epal Dito” Campaign started in 2013 under the stint of former Secretary Dinky Soliman that aims to insulate the Pantawid Pamilya Pilipino Program from undue politicking.

According Dir. Garcia, DSWD Region V will continue to promote the said campaign to empower its clients and beneficiaries under the national government programs. This campaign is not limited to ESA or 4Ps but also encompasses the entire implementation of other DSWD programs.

“Ang taumbayan ang maghusga, kapag epal huwag iboto dahil linoloko lang nila ang mahihirap,” he added.

For ESA queries, the concerned individual or party may consult the Municipal Action Team (MAT) assigned in the municipality.

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DSWD Region V celebrates Women’s Month

DSWD Region V employees along with various groups joined the One Billion Rising Solidarity Walk last March 22, 2018.

DSWD Region V conducted series of events that promoted women’s rights which included an information drive that underscores topics on how to curb violence against women (VAW) in the workplace and at home in connection with the observance Women’s Month this March.
According to Marian Monsalve, Social Welfare Officer II and DSWD Region V Gender and Development (GAD) focal person, the Department was able to conduct orientation series on women protective laws including Solo Parents Welfare Act, Anti-Rape Law, Anti-Sexual Harassment Act. The said topics were tackled by Atty. Joyce Guerrero, the Asst. Regional Prosecutor of Department of Justice (DOJ) to educate the DSWD employees.

“As DSWD workers who provide technical services to our partners, it is our duty to increase our knowledge about women’s rights and continuously upskill to promote these rights to quickly respond to VAW,” Monsalve said.

There was a similar discussion at the Regional Rehabilitation Center for Youth (RRCY), a DSWD residential care facility with an expanded topic on anti-child pornography and Magna Carta for Women.

The DSWD Region V also conducted a Youth Forum last March 14 which also tackled Violence against women and children (VAWC). 90 individuals from Team Albay Youth
Organization (TAYO), Bicol University, scholars of Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), Good Shepherd Home Youth and Latter Day Saints attended the said forum.

Moreover, Monsalve shared same discussions to different radio guestings while the social workers assigned at provincial DSWD offices also provided technical assistance to local government units (LGUs) regarding women and children’s rights.

The DSWD Region V also joined the One Billion Rising Culminating last March 23 at Albay Astrodome which capped the celebration of the Women’s Month in Bicol region with the women’s rights advocate, Vice-President Leni Robredo, as the keynote speaker.

The theme: We make change work for women is adopted from 2017 to 2022 for the Women’s Month Celebration.

DSWD offers different services to women in crisis such as free counseling wherein licensed social workers assess and provide apt interventions. Financial assistance is also given to them
through the Assistance to Indivdual in Crisis Situation (AICS), a social safety net or a stop-gap mechanism to support the recovery of individuals and families from unexpected crisis such as illness or death of a family member, natural or man-made calamities, and other crisis situations.

“The government offers enabling mechanisms to address VAWC and everyone has a stake in this,” Dir. Arnel Gacia said.

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DSWD Region V receives two DSWD national awards in the annual PRAISE

The DSWD Region V honorees in Manila during the 2017 Program on Awards and Incentives for Service Excellence (PRAISE). L-R Cresencia Deri (Social Welfare Officer V, Centers Head), Jindra Mingoy (Social Welfare Officer IV and Gawad Huwaran Awardee), Dir. Arnel Garcia, Lea Daet (Social Welfare Officer II and RSCC Head who received the Best Center Award)

Legazpi City, Albay—The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V received two national awards during the 2017 Program on Awards and Incentives for Service Excellence (PRAISE) held in Manila yesterday.

Along with 15 DSWD workers from different parts of the country, Ms. Jindra Mingoy, Social Welfare Officer IV and head of the Crisis Intervention Section and Community-Based Services received the Gawad Huwaran Award (Mahuhusay, Wasto, at Responsableng Linngkod Bayani ng DSWD) for her dedication, trustworthy service, delivery of outstanding results and personal commitment to public service.

The Reception and Study Center for Children (RSCC), a residential care facility that provides temporary care and shelter to abandoned and abused children, was recognized as the Best Center in the Philippines.

Ms. Lea Daet, also a social worker and the RSCC head, said that the whole team was extremely honored and grateful for the recognition which symbolized service excellence.

“As what our Regional Director (Arnel Garcia) said, we should always be the standard of excellence. He encouraged us to think outside the box and explore infinite possibilities to deliver nothing but the best for the clients we serve,” Daet added.

“I am deeply privileged to work with great individuals in DSWD Region V who possess utmost dedication and commitment to public service, thus, this will serve as our inspiration to continue service excellence in any endeavor we undertake,” Dir. Arnel Garcia said.

The PRAISE is given by the DSWD National Office to give honor to people –the men and women of DSWD who have devoted their lives to the beneficiaries, and to those who continue to use all their strength, skill, intelligence, and compassion to uphold a standard of professionalism that fully benefits the poor and marginalized sectors. (with reports from Social Marketing Service)

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Albay officials acknowledge DSWD’s augmentation support in Mayon Relief Operations

Guinobatan, Albay—The Albay mayors who were present during the Hatid-Tulong: Mayon Caravan last February 28, 2018 expressed gratitude to Dir. Arnel Garcia of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V for the incessant relief augmentation to the affected families by the Mayon volcanic activities.

The Hatid-Tulong: Mayon Caravan is a humanitarian caravan, the first of a series, spearheaded by the DSWD together with other member-agencies of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) mobilized resources for the delivery of additional augmentation assistance.

As of the press time, the DSWD’s cost of assistance reached PhP84,582,344.72 comprised of 150,039 FFPs and other non-food items such as malong, dignity kits, toys, blankets, tents, sleeping kits and laminated sacks. There are 15,710 families inside evacuation centers.

DSWD Region V quickly responded to the needs of the local government units (LGUs) and provided the requested relief goods days after the first blow of Mayon eruption in January. DSWD has also provided the 28-day food requirement for the month of February as agreed.

Nine LGUs namely, Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Ligao City, Malilipot, Tabaco City, Sto. Domingo, Legazpi City and Bacacay received a total of 23,800 DSWD family food packs (FFPs) last February 28, 2018. These FFPs were ferried by 24 trucks from the DSWD warehouse in Pasay City to fulfill DSWD’s commitment to the LGUs with depleted resources.

Tabaco City Mayor Krisel Lagman-Luistro who is present during the caravan said that it is challenging to manage evacuation centers because the LGU needs to spend at least PhP400,000 a day for 2,000 affected families but thanked DSWD for the additional aid.

“Digdi ko sana namati ang bilog ang suporta ning mga national government agencies (NGAs) para matabanangan ang mga LGUs. Ang tingog ta tigdadangog asin tigtatawan importansya kang DSWD (This is the only time I felt the full support from the national government agencies (NGAs) to support us, the LGUs. DSWD heed our call for help,” Luistro added.

Camalig Mayor Ahrdail Baldo also added that she felt the presence of the NGAs most specially the assistance of DSWD.
“Dakulang pasalamat kay Dir. Garcia dahil kung wara po ang DSWD, gurutom po kita, gurutom su mga evacuees ta. Indi na kami mamroblema na mga mayors ta DSWD na ang nagpakawn para sa bulan ning Pebrero (Thank you very much, Dir, Arnel Garcia. If not for your help, our evacuees will starve. We, the mayors, are no longer troubled because DSWD provided for February),” Baldo said.

Also, Mayor Herbie Aguas of Sto. Domingo and Ligao City Mayor Patricia Alzua agreed with the other mayors and personally thanked DSWD for all the assistance provided to their constituents given the financial constraints.

Office of the President honors DSWD Region V for the Mayon Relief Operations
The DSWD Region V through Dir. Garcia received the presidential watch that was awarded by the Presidential Adviser on Political Affairs Sec. Francis Tolentino from the Office of the Presidential Coordinator for Mayon Operations last February 27, 2018. The watch was accorded to DSWD because of the agency’s good performance in the ongoing Mayon Disaster Operations.

Guinobatan Mayor Gemma Ongjoco who is the host town of the Hatid Tulong: Mayon Caravan congratulated Dir. Garcia for the recognition received.

“He deserves the recognition because DSWD Region V is hands-on and is our active partner on the ground,” Ongjoco sai.

Similar watch was also awarded to the regional office of the Department of Health (DOH). (with reports from DSWD Central Office)

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DSWD Region V pays tribute to 2017 retirees

Legazpi City—The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V celebrated the contributions of its 2017 retirees by honoring them in a program dubbed as Salamat, Mabuhay! yesterday at Kanzo Hall and Restaurant.
“It is my honor to be part of this celebration. This is the chance to pay tribute to our retirees together with their friends, families and relatives,” Dir. Arnel Garcia said.

Two former DSWD employees namely, Sammy Buenconsejo, a Social Welfare Assistant at Crisis Intervention Unit and Renato Millena, an Administrative Officer I at the Cash Section, received a plaque of appreciation and cash incentives.

Each of them received a total amount of PhP15,000.00 from DSWD Region V and Social Welfare Employees Association (SWEAP) Bicol.
Buenconsejo served the Department for 21 years while Millena reached 25 years. The former was also the focal person for the promotion of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) rights.

Aside from the retirees, Regional Director Arnel Garcia also honored their families for the support.

“Ang retirement ang pagkakataon na babalik ka sa pamilya mo at pasasalamatan sila. Ito na yung time para bawiin yung oras na nawala (Retirement is your chance to return to your family and thank them. This is the time to recover the lost time),” Dir. Garcia said.
He also advised the honorees that retirement should not be seen as the end of their journey and consider it an opportunity to learn a new skill.

Responding to Dir. Garcia’s remark, Millena said that though he misses DSWD, he can now spend all of his time with his family and plans to return to his old hobby of biking and jogging.

“Salamat sa pamunuan ng DSWD at sa lahat ng empleyado. Salamat sa masasayang araw na naging produktibo (I thank the DSWD management and its employees. Thank you for all the productive days),” Buenconsejo said.

He added that both men are extraordinary workers because of their commitment to public service. DSWD employees also prepared audio-video presentations, rendered songs and delivered messages to the two honorees.

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DSWD debunks report in its absence during Mayon Disaster Operations in Albay; DSWD cost of assistance to LGUs amounts to 32.8 million

Legazpi City—The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V clarifies an isolated report published by a national newspaper on Sunday morning about the alleged absence of the Department in the Mayon Eruption relief operations. Currently, the DSWD provided the total cost of assistance of PhP32,833,008.72 to Albay inclusive of food and non-food items and continuously providing technical assistance to local government units (LGUs) in relation to camp coordination and management, protection of the rights of the evacuees and generation and consolidation of its Disaster Response, Operations and Monitoring reports daily.

Just three days after Albay ordered the evacuation of more than 8,000 families within the 7-kilometer extended danger zone, the DSWD Region V was quick to augment 5,500 family food packs (FFPs) upon the request of the Provincial Local Government Unit (PLGU) of Albay and 500 family food packs were provided as initial augmentation to Legazpi City.

Governor Al Francis Bichara acknowledged the assistance of DSWD to the provincial government of Albay.

To date, DSWD provided a 50,095 family food packs amounting to PhP20,007,818.00 and PhP12,825,190.72 worth of non-food items (malong, assorted toys, dignity kits and blankets) to PLGU Albay and nine cities/municipalities (cities of Ligao, Tabaco, Legazpi together with Guinobatan, Malilipot, Bacacay, Sto. Domingo, Daraga and Camalig) affected by the Mayon Volcano eruption with a total of 22,369 families affected as Mayon alert level 4 is still hoisted.

The affected LGUs should submit to DSWD their disaster report and request letter signed by the local chief executive (LCE) to access the said available augmentation support from the DSWD.

DSWD is prepared to support LGUs with food
Dir. Arnel Garcia said that the agency can provide for 20,000 families for 100 days if this need arises.
DSWD Region V has sufficient stocks at the Regional warehouse and is still expecting the arrival of 26,824 additional family food packs from the DSWD Central Office. It has also requested another 1,000,000 family food packs worth P402,000,000.00 to address the food requirement of the affected families if disaster operations continue for another three months. Non-food items like dignity kits, malong, plastic mats and mosquito nets amounting to Php206,808,768.00are expected to arrive at FO V anytime.

However, LGUs reported to DSWD that the evacuees have sufficient food supply because various donors pour out assistance to evacuation centers. To date, DSWD recorded a total of Php10,240,448.00 coming from non-government organizations (NGOs).
Meanwhile, other national government agencies (NGAs) and LGUs also provided assistance amounting to PhP71,673,523.69.

DSWD Cash-for-Work Program
Last Wednesday, DSWD formally inked the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with local chief executives from the cities of Ligao, Tabaco, Legazpi together with Guinobatan, Malilipot, Bacacay, Sto. Domingo, Daraga and Camalig for the Cash-for-Work Program that will provide families with cash assistance in exchange for community works while inside the evacuation centers. The DSWD will prioritize families inside evacuation centers in its Cash-For-Work with a budget amounting to 61,973,000.00.

The Mother Proposal for the said program has been forwarded to Usec. Emmanuel A. Leyco, OIC-DSWD Central Office last Feb. 1, 2018.

While the DSWD Region V is expected to receive the submission of the LGU’s Project Proposals and Sangguniang Bayan (SB) resolution as part of the program’s documentary requirements.

DSWD will immediately download the funds to LGUs once they complete the documentary requirements.
Augmentation to camp management in Guinobatan, Albay

Similarly, Presidential Adviser on Political Affairs Sec. Francis Tolentino from the Office of the Presidential Coordinator for Mayon Operations has ordered DSWD to act as co- Camp Managers of Guinobatan. 48 additional DSWD personnel will be deployed in 20 evacuation centers to augment in the management of evacuation centers starting tomorrow.

The DSWD Region V visited the evacuation centers in Guinobatan last Friday checking the actual situations of the displaced families. DSWD will also conduct psychosocial processing for the evacuees together with DOH as the lead agency.
Other response efforts

Dir. Arnel Garcia of DSWD Region V as the Vice-Chair for Response regularly presides Response Cluster Meeting to cull out important issues and concerns of the evacuees.

DSWD continuously to monitor, validate and assess of evacuation centers to ensure that the needs of IDPs are met and are compliant to zero sexual and gender-based violence environment.

Moreover, there are additional members of the Quick Response Team (QRT) in the Regional Office to augment in the monitoring. The QRT at the Regional Office will report in two shifts: 8:00am-4:00 pm, 3:00pm-11: 00 pm, to generate and validate disaster reports from different affected areas of Mayon eruption.

The QRT members will also provide technical assistance to LGUs specifically the camp managers, local social welfare and development offices (LSWDOs) and local disaster risk reduction and management offices (LDRRMOs) in the protection of the rights of the the evacuees.

DSWD field workers are also checking the relief distribution of DSWD food packs in the evacuation centers. DSWD also pre-positioned two tents at BRTTH for the possible influx of patients

The Emergency Telecom Equipment is on standby in case stable data or network connection and communications lines are cut in Albay.

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DSWD can provide food aid to LGUs affected by Mayon eruption for three months

Legazpi City—Dir. Arnel Garcia said in a press conference earlier today that the agency can provide for 20,000 families for 100 days if this need arises.

He added that the agency can call the National Office to augment delivery of family food packs (FFPs) amounting to PhP402,000,000 to sustain the food requirement of 20,000 in three months.
DSWD still expects the number of evacuees to rise as Mayon volcano remains in alert level 4 status. Based on the 12noon DSWD data today, there are 19,249 affected families or 74, 290 individuals coming from nine municipalities namely, Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Ligao City, Malilipot, Tabaco City, Sto. Domingo, Bacacay and Legazpi City.
“Hindi po kayo mauubusan ng pagkain at tulong dahil may karanasan na tayo sa malawakang evacuation noon (You will not run out of food and government aid because we have experienced extensive evacuation before),” he said.

Relief assistance to Albay
As of the press time, the province of Albay through its provincial government and city government of Legazpi already received the total cost of assistance amounting to PhP17,123,024.72 which includes the following food and non-food items:
 13,503 Family Food Packs – PhP 5,297,834
 14,000 pieces of Malong – PhP 3,500,000
 6,503 pieces dignity kit – PhP 7,023,240
 2,000 pieces assorted toys – PhP 194,880
 6,503 pieces blanket – PhP 1,107,070.72

Moreover, the DSWD Regional Office has already requested a total of 69,000 family food packs from its National Office. Twelve trucks (trucks courtesy of World Food Programme) ferried a total of 19, 500 family food packs (FFPs) from the National Office today while the Provincial Government of Albay picked up the remaining 4,343 of the requested 12,003 FFPs from the DSWD Regional Warehouse this morning.

One (1) DSWD family food pack contains six (6) kilos of rice, four (4) tin cans of corned beef, four (4) tin cans of sardines and six (6) packs of energy drink or coffee sufficient for five members of a family good for two days. The LGUs also provide relief supplies to affected families but the packaging and content vary.

DSWD promotes the evacuees’ rights
In a meeting of the Quick Response Teams (QRTs) yesterday, Ms. Corazon Pitero, Social Welfare Officer V, emphasized the importance of validating the data enclosed in the disaster report submitted by the local government units (LGUs). She said that the generated reports are the basis of DSWD, other national government agencies (NGAs) and non-government organizations (NGOs) for the relief efforts.
The QRT members will also provide technical assistance to LGUs specifically the camp managers, local social welfare and development offices (LSWDOs) and local disaster risk reduction and management offices (LDRRMOs) in the protection of the rights of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) or the evacuees.

“We look after the safety and wellbeing of our IDPs especially the vulnerable groups including the elderly, women, children and persons with disability (PWDs),” Garcia added.

Evacuation centers should be clean, healthy and safe for everyone. DSWD recommends that these evacuation centers must have child-friendly spaces for their protection and women-friendly spaces for gender sensitivity.

The QRT will also monitor the general facilities if there are existing medial stations, hand washing and laundry areas, waste disposal area, kitchen for cooking, breastfeeding rooms, conjugal rooms and domestic animal pens.

Selling, buying of relief goods punishable by imprisonment of up to 12 years
Section 19 of Republic Act (RA)10121 or the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 prohibits the selling of relief goods, equipment, or other aid commodities intended for distribution to disaster victims. It also prohibits buying, either for consumption or resale, of relief supplies both from disaster relief agencies and from the recipient disaster-affected persons.

Other prohibited acts include preventing the entry and distribution of relief goods in disaster-stricken areas; diverting or misdelivery of relief goods; forcibly seizing of the goods intended for a specific group of victims or relief agency; and, accepting, possessing, using or disposing of relief supplies not intended for nor consigned to a person.

The prohibited acts further include misrepresenting the source of relief goods either by covering or replacing the labels, repacking the goods into containers with different markings, or by making a false verbal claim that the goods came from another agency or persons; and, substituting or replacing relief goods, equipment or other aid commodities with the same items of inferior or cheaper quality.
Under the law, those who commit any of the prohibited acts face a fine ranging from P50,000 – P500,000 or imprisonment of six years up to 12 years.

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