After a series of social preparations, including consultations with partner agencies, strategic planning, coordination with recipient Local Government Units, and information dissemination, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office V (DSWD FO V) has formally commenced the full-scale implementation of Project LAWA at BINHI in the Bicol Region.

During the pilot launching of the program in one of its recipient LGU, the Municipality of Batuan, Masbate on April 26 to 28, 2024 DSWD Field Office V Regional Director Norman S. Laurio urged the partner-beneficiaries to participate in this program wholeheartedly and with dedication.

“Napakalaking pakinabang ng programang ito lalo na sa ating mga farmers at mga kababayan na kapos-palad at lubos na naapektuhan ng matinding tag-init at El Niño sa ating bansa. Kami sa DSWD sa pangunguna ng ating Mahal na Pangulo Ferdinand Marcos Jr. at sa ating Kalihim Rex Gatchalian ay nakikiusap para sa inyong buong pusong pakiki-isa para sa tagumpay ng Project LAWA at BINHI sa inyong komunidad,” he stated.

In the Bicol Region, the agency allocated a Financial Target amounting to PHP37,706,700.00 for 4,733 partner-beneficiaries across 15 municipalities in the three provinces, including Masbate, Catanduanes, and Sorsogon.

In Project LAWA at BINHI, or the Local Adaptation to Water Access (LAWA) and Breaking Insufficiency through Nutritious Harvest for the Impoverished (BINHI) implementation, partner-beneficiaries will undergo the 20-day Cash-for-Training and Work Modality.

During the first step, partner-beneficiaries will undergo a 3-day Learning and Development Session (LDS) about Risk Resilience Program (RRP), Disaster Risk Reduction, Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation, and DSWD programs and services. This includes training in executing identified projects such as water sufficiency, crop-related disasters and pest control, Waste Management, Environmental Protection, and Vermi-Composting.

In the second step, the partner-beneficiaries will proceed to the actual cash-for-work program. This involves 15 days of implementing Projects and Interventions focusing on Water Sufficiency (Phase 1) and Food Security (Phase 2).

The last step will be the two-day CFT Sessions on different strategies for the sustainability of the projects.

The Cash Assistance Rate and compensation to the partner-beneficiaries are 100% of the prevailing Regional Daily Minimum Wage Rate (RDMWR) range of the project area.

The partner-beneficiaries were identified based on the following criteria: Families of Farmers, Fisher Folks, Indigenous Peoples, and other climate and disaster-vulnerable families identified as poor by Listahanan 3 or upon assessment and validation of the Local Social Welfare and Development Office (LSWDO), families who reside within the program’s target areas who are willing to participate in the project/activity, only one representative per family shall participate per project implementation year regardless of modality, and the family representative must be at least 18 years old at the date of participation.

The 15 recipient municipalities were identified as highly exposed to EL Niño based on the Climate Outlook of DOST-PAGASA and within the most number of poor families based on the Listahanan 3.

The program aims to strengthen the adaptive capabilities of poor and vulnerable families during severe droughts and mitigate food insecurity and water scarcity caused by the El Niño phenomenon.

It is also one of the proactive interventions and sustainable solutions of the agency to combat hunger, alleviate poverty, and decrease the economic vulnerability of communities by addressing food insecurity and water scarcity exacerbated by disasters and climate change in the country.

Currently, the DSWD FO V’s RRP Focal Persons are conducting simultaneous implementation of the program within the recipient LGU in the Bicol Region.##