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Sustaining Community Volunteerism

Lumbang Water System Association (LUWASA) members flash their smiles at the water system sub-project site.

Volunteerism has never been an easy task because it takes time and effort to help a community. To sustain this for years is already an achievement.

A project may have a positive effect, but it must have long-term impacts. The organization who handles the operations and maintenance (O&M) of the project must also be self-sustaining to fully address the issues and its mission in the community.

Through maintainable efforts, the Lumbang Water System Association (LUWASA) in Barangay Lumbang, Pilar Sorsogon has set an example of sustaining the community project.

The LUWASA Incorporated was established last July 7, 2012  from the collective action of the community that aims to provide a safe and reliable water supply to Lumbang’s residents.

The water system was a community-proposed sub-project funded under the Department of Social Welfare and Development Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS) to provide safe and potable drinking water to every household in the community.

According to Jean Poseran, 35, president of LUWASA Incorporated, their community decided to propose a water system sub-project due to the difficulty to fetch water that requires them a  thirty-minute walk to reach the water source which is located in another village.

After the water system project was prioritized for funding, the community provided its greatest effort to implement the community project that will resolve their problem.

Marami ang tumutulong. Hindi iniisip kung may sweldo o yung makukuha kundi mabenepisyuhan lang ng tubig (Many people are helping in the project. They did not expect anything in exchange of their services but they helped because of the benefits of the water system will bring),” Poseran explained.

According to her, the water system originally included 11 units of Level II tap stands with 77 household beneficiaries. The Level II water supply system is a piped water with a communal water point serving four (4) to six (6) households.

AS A FORMAL ORGANIZATION

On October 22, 2014, the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) recognized LUWASA Incorporated as a registered organized.

For Dorris Mendez, 42, chairman of the board of LUWASA Incorporated, their organization is more confident to collect fees from the residents since they are now a SEC-registered group.

Dahil kami ay naka-register, andyan ang karapatan namin gumawa ng rules and regulations na naayon sa tamang pagpapahalaga ng proyekto (Since the organization is registered, we have the right to impose rules and regulations in accordance to the maintenance of the project),” she said.

After the registration, the organization was able to manage and extend its services to Zone 3. Also, they upgraded the services from Level II to Level III water system, a piped water supply with a private water point or house connection thus, supplying to 189 households and one (1) elementary school including free services for the day care center and barangay community garden.

According to Jerome Lipata, 33, bill and account collector, the payment was also reduced from PhP60 per cubic liter to Php30.00per cubic liter as a tariff to cover the maintenance services of the project. Through the payments, the organization was able to acquire a monthly revenue of Php20,000 to Php25,000.00.

As part of the maintenance activities, the organization checks the elbow pipeline and cleans the water tank twice a month. This is also to inspect for any defects to prevent from further damages.

Mendez also cited that everyone in the community has a responsibility for sustaining the project.

Sana po patuloy na alagaan natin ang proyekto na ating sinimulan para pwede pa ito magamit ng mga susunod na henerasyon (I hope that we keep on taking care of the project that we have started so that the future generation can still use it),” she explained. /ramsertan/

About DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS

Sorsogon has implemented DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS in 14 municipalities with a total implementation grant of Php 698,826,588.11 and local counterpart contribution of Php 15,173,647.00 from barangay and municipal local government units (LGUs) to fund community-managed sub-projects.

DSWD had allocated Pilar with Php 46,000,000.00 and local counterpart contribution of Php 2,458,287.00.

Barangay Lumbang has five (5) sub-projects from different modalities of DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS that benefitted 326 households.

Here is the list of community projects in the barangay according to its fund source:

Fund Source Name of Sub-Project Project Cost
KC1 Rehabilitation/Improvement of Farm to Market Road Php1,924,700.00
KC1 Construction of Barangay Water System Level II Php1,216,000.00
AUSAID Construction of Day Care Center Php653,466.00
NCDDP Installation of twenty (20) units of Solar Powered Streetlights Php789,840.00
BUB Concreting of Road in Lumbang Php1,000,000.00

 For more details about DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS, follow this link:

http://ncddp.dswd.gov.ph/site/faqs

 

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