Giving Back Compassionate Service

“Wala mi nagdahom na makatukod mi ani na proyekto,” Elizabeth Tandoy shared, “Mao nang amumahon namu ni pag-ayo aron molambo kini ug makatabang pud mi sa mga tain taong nangihanglan ug tabang.” (“We didn’t expect that we can put up a project like this… We will take good care of this project to prosper so that we could also extend help to others.”)

 

Elizabeth Tandoy is the President of Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) San Vicente Association in Butuan City. Established in October 2015, one hundred thirty-six (136) members agreed to start a credit facility, which aims to alleviate the economic condition of the people within the community from unscrupulous money lenders or loan sharks and to eventually uplift the people’s quality of life.

Operating like a bank, SLP San Vicente Association’s project is a socialized micro-lending and social insurance registered in Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Further, its social insurance is registered with Insurance Commission.

 

Partnership Towards Efficiency

The Association strengthened their micro-enterprise through maintaining strong collaboration and partnership with various government agencies and local banks, such as the Barangay Local Government Unit (BLGU), Butuan City LGU, Cantilan Bank, and Landbank of the Philippines.

The BLGU donated a building and created a Barangay Ordinance that aids the effectual operations of the project. The association enjoys tax holiday as a support of the CLGU. Furthermore, one of the Sanggunian Members of the city, Atty Glenn Carampatana, acts as the legal counsel of the group with free of charge. The association forged partnership with Landbank for rediscounting notes.

 

Serving the Community

For almost two (2) years of service, it has touched the lives of its members and has responded to the emerging needs of its community and even the nearby communities in its service area.

Kay natabangan mi sa programa, galantaw pud mi na makatabang mi sa among isigkatawo (Because the program has helped us, we also aim to extend help to others),” Elizabeth narrated. “Gahandom mi na tungod ani na proyekto, makalingkawas pud ang laing tao sa kalisod (We wish that this project will help others to be alleviated from poverty).”

In an attempt to be a competitive and credible credit facility, it is geared towards uplifting the socio-economic conditions of the members through its various financial product and services. It offers various types of loans such as Chattel, Salary & ATM and Micro-enterprise. Apart from its loan services, it also provides insurance services.

Three (3) of the many people who benefited with the association’s services are Alicia Guiral, Fortunata A. Duque and Ceverino L. Guindulam.

After availing the Micro enterprise loan, Alicia and Fortunata both have their own business. “Naa nakoy kaugalingong carenderia tungod sa na-avail nako na loan (I now have my own food eatery business because of the loan that I’ve availed),” Alicia shared. Further, Fortunata also expressed, “Nabalik nako ako negosyo sa humay mao nangg dako akong pasalamat sa SLP San Vicente (I got back in my business in rice production that’s why I’m greatly grateful to SLP San Vicente).”

Due to the association’s insurance, one of the deceased family members of the Principal Insured, Ceverino, has been aided by the insurance.

Moreover, as part of their social responsibility, it has five (5) college scholars and they have annual “AdoptA-Barangay” and tree planting activity.

Headed to Empowerment

At present, the association remains to its goal of helping poor families and those who wanted to engage in businesses by implementing micro-enterprise activities through its multiple credit services. As part of its business expansion, SLP San Vicente Association ventures in a food eatery and catering services.i

Sa nahitabo karon sa amoa, maingon nako na goal met (For what’s happening right now, I can say that it’s goal met),” Elizabeth proudly shared.

 

Written by Mary Carmelle C. Jumawan, DSWD Caraga

Posted in SLP

SLP brings hope, light to Manobos in Agusan del Sur

Who would expect to see a trace of technological innovation in a very isolated place?

A group of Manobos in an isolated place called Sitio Bantolinao in Sibagat, Agusan del Sur claims that positive change can happen.

In January 2012, 25 partner-beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya Pamilyang Pilipino Program in Bantolinao received Php 10,000.00 each through the Sustainable Livelihood Program’s (SLP’s) Self-Employment Assistance-Kaunlaran (SEA-K). Eager to gain a stable income, the group agreed to combine their grants and ventured into General Merchandise.

Evelyn “Inday” Inocente, SKA chairman and a Pantawid Pamilya parent leader, shared her extreme happiness after receiving the grants.

“Dako kaayo among  pasalamat sa tabang gikan sa SLP tungod niini naay maayong kabag-ohan sa among kinabuhi (We are very grateful for SLP’s grant. It brought change to our lives),” says Inday.

“Agig pagbalik sa tabang sa gobyerno, naningkamot kami na naay panginabuhi na matukod alang sa kaayuhan sa tanan (In return to the government’s help, we did our best to create a livelihood for the welfare of everyone),” she adds.

Situated in a far-flung area, access to basic commodities and other supplies has never been easy in Sitio Bantolinao. Thus, putting up a general merchandise is seen practical and feasible. Through the SEA-K fund, financial assistance and logistic support from the municipal local government unit (MLGU), and the initiatives of the members, the efficient implementation of the project has been carried out. Because of the project, the community members no longer have to pass a 15-km treacherous route and spend over a thousand pesos for transportation just to purchase goods in the municipality proper.

With a positive profit and a vision to bring more change, the association has expanded its operations by entering into a joint project with the Sibagat SEA-K Federation on Abaca Production and establishing a very remarkable project called Bantolinao SEA-K Electric Power project.

Through its partner Socio-Economic Uplift Literacy Anthropological and Development Services (SULADS) and with the help of the Municipal Local Government Unit (MLGU), the association has bought a mini-hydroelectric power generator which is now installed at the Bantolinao Falls.

Fifty-two (52) households of the sitio have since been provided with electric power 24/7.

“Dako ang kabag-uhan ug tabang ang nahatag sa kuryente sa amoa (The electricity brought a huge change and help to us),” Evelyn shares.

Because of the power from the mini-hydro, the association has been able to install lighting facilities to the store and the abaca processing area making it possible to operate during gloomy days and during the night.

This trace of innovation has emancipated the tribe from the shadow of ignorance through exposure to radio and television.

Children can now easily study and make their assignments at night. They have acquired more learnings through the educational shows they have watched on TV.  

“Mas maganahan nako mag-study kay naa nay suga sa balay (I am more eager to study because we already have light at home),” one of the daughters in Bantolinao shares with a sweet smile on her face.

To ensure the sustainability of the power supply, the Bantolinao waterfalls and the power generator are maintained by the community members - both male and female.

Furthermore, the association has also ventured into micro-lending, offering loans that have aided both the members and the non-members, especially during emergencies.

With their present economic status, they have gained confidence in dealing with people out of their context and even go to different places without fear of intimidation.

“Tungod sa tabang sa SLP ug sa among pagpaningkamot makaingon dyud ko na kaya ang kabag-uhan (With SLP’s help and our hard work, I can say that we can make a change),” Evelyn concludes.

The huge success of the association has brought hope, shed light, and caused empowerment to the Manobos in Sitio Bantolinao.

Written by Mary Carmelle C. Jumawan, DSWD Caraga

Posted in SLP

KAPWA 123 SEA-K Meeting: A Story of Resiliency and Innovation

Resiliency or the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties is a trait that is exemplified by Ms. Lydia Codiñera and the members of Kapwa 123 SEA-K Marketing. Rising up from the demolishment and relocation of their homes, the members of KSM bounced back and now have a thriving micro-enterprise which creates various household products.

The members of Kapwa 123 SEA-K Marketing started their business with a capital of Php 30,000.00 from the Department of Social Welfare and Development. From this initial capital, the group produced dishwashing liquid, hand wash, fabric conditioner, detergent powder and other household products. The group was then given further assistance in 2015 when they were visited by Ms. Geraldine Mabaet, a Project Development Officer from the Sustainable Livelihood Program who was impressed by their product display. The group was then organized into Kapwa 123 SEA-K Marketing and given seed money of Php 250,000.00 to increase the volume of their production and to innovate with more new household products.

Now, the group has continued to grow and innovate with a new marketing strategy for their group and plans to reach out to 3,000 Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino beneficiaries for training in the production of Kapwa’s products. Kapwa 123 SEA-K Marketing has also bagged second place in the recently held Bangon Kabuhayan Award which recognizes outstanding practices in the micro-enterprise development and the employment facilitation tracks of the Sustainable Livelihood Program.

 

Written by Denise Marygrace O. Santos, DSWD National Capital Region

Organic Blue Crab Fattening Farm

 

Through the financial and technical assistance provided by DSWD’s Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP), the women-led Manhak Association in Looc, Romblon was able to build an organic blue crab fattening farm on their shores in February 2016. SLP provided skills training and cash for building the foot bridge and cottages which the members of the association built themselves; amounting to PhP525,741.00.

Brgy. Manhac, Looc is a coastal barangay, and 64% of its population are fisherfolks, with 53% of the women unemployed and dependent on their husband’s income.

Nine of the 10 members of Manhak Association, or Manggagawang Aktibo na Naglalayong Harapin ang Kinabukasan, are women including the President Luz Soriano. All of them are Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries and fisherfolks.

Manhak Association’s blue crab farm has 23 cages containing a maximum of 2,300 pieces or average of 250 kgs of blue crabs each, allowing them to earn PHP50,000 from each cage. The crabs are cultured organically, using scrap fish and left-over vegetables from households and fishermen, hence the cost of maintaining the farm is kept at the minimum.

The association is currently supplying 11 restaurants in Romblon and Boracay island, along with the local market. Because of the increasing demand for Manhac’s crabs and to sustain the farm’s production, BFAR will be developing a lying-in farm in Manhac which the association will manage as well. The members have also started serving cooked dishes in their farm’s receiving area, coming up with their own unique menu, to cater to walk-in customers. Because of these, the tourism office of Romblon has included Manhak Association’s crab farm as one of the major tourist destinations of the province.

Prior to the establishment of the crab farm, each of the members of the association earned as little as zero to PhP 100 in a day. Now, they earn a minimum of PhP225 per day, to as much as PhP2,000 per week.

Alita Gaito, one of Manhak Association’s members, was able to build a second floor for their house and support her daughter’s college education, through her income from the crab farm. “Magkaka-second floor na bahay namin. Ilang kilo na lang ng crabs yan, matatapos din,” she says, referring to her income from selling blue crabs.

Written by Ivon Claire Domingo, DSWD NPMO

All In For Development: A Mother’s Story

 

“Sa mga lumipas na panahon, natutunan ko na ang pagtaguyod ng pamilya ay tulad din ng pamamahala ng gobyerno, na nangangailangan ng pagkakaisa at pagtutulungan upang makamit ang tagumpay.”

(Over the years, I learned that managing a family is like managing a government, it needs unity and cooperation to succeed), says Maribel Vertudazo, a 47-year-old mother of ten children from the Island of Camiguin. She claims to have learned this over her years of experience being a community volunteer to the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s KALAHI-CIDSS program and as a Pantawid grantee.

“Being a community volunteer taught me to be strong and creative in dealing with various types of people”, says Maribel. “While the Pantawid Pamliyang Pilipino Program is providing aide to my children’s need, I also get to improve our family income through the Sustainable Livelihood Program, an all-in privilege indeed”, she adds.

 

In early days

In early days, Mrs. Maribel’s family was challenged after the near-death encounter of her husband who was once a member of the Civilian Volunteer Organization (CVO) most commonly known as “Barangay Tanod” of Barangay San Jose, Mahinog, Province of Camiguin. Accordingly, her husband was stabbed 5 times in vital parts of his body which he has to undergo vigorous surgery to survive. “Isa ka bulan mi nagpuyo sa ospital tungod sa operasyon sa akong bana, ang iyang tambal kulang ang dos mil kada-adlaw, naglisod gyud ko ato unsaon pagbayad sa mga galastuhon” (Because of his surgery, we were confined in the hospital for a month. His medicines cost two thousand pesos more or less every day. I really had a difficulty in paying for his expenses.), she narrates.

But because of her awareness of DSWD programs, she was able to seek medical assistance and other support to aid their needs. “Nagpasalamat gyud ko sa DSWD kay wala gyud ko gibalibaliran panahon sa among kalisod, (I was thankful to DSWD because they didn’t fail us in times of our struggle”, she affirms.

 

Moving forward

Although Mr. Virtudazo survived the incident, his vital organs were severely weakened that in result he is prohibited to do heavy lifting jobs or any heavy works for that matter. “Pero ang akong bana gadawat gihapon ug ginagmay nga trabaho sa basakan, pangtustos sa among pagkaon kay inadlaw man iyang abot (but my husband now accepts farm labor works on a daily basis or on call basis where he earns a penny just to support our daily need for food”, Maribel says.

Given the circumstances, Mrs. Maribel has to look for other sources of livelihood, she has to earn as well to support her family. Even though most of her children have families of their own, she still has four minor children to attend to.

Three of her children’s education and health needs are being supported by the Pantawid Pamilya program. “Dagko gyud ang natabang sa Pantawid Pamilya program sa among pamilya kay tungod, tanang panghinaglanon sa akong mga anak sa eskwelahan gitubag na sa programa, dili na kayo ko mamroblema (I am really grateful to the Pantawid Pamilya program because it helped tremendously my children’s needs in school apart from the health benefits, I don’t have to worry too much on this matter)”, she says.

As an added income to her husband, Maribel sells “kakanin” or native Filipino delicacies to their neighborhood.

 

Community participation leading to development

Moving forward, Maribel continues to be active in DSWD activities, given that she a community volunteer and a Pantawid grantee, she is always informed about the other development programs of the department. When the Sustainable Livelihood Program came in, Maribel knew she has to get involved. Well, she did. She was one of the thirty-four participants from the municipality of Mahinog, who completed the 15-days Food Processing Training provided by 1 and All Technical School for this particular project. “Wala gyud ko nagduha-duha ug apil sa training, labi na kay ganahan ko magluto-luto (I didn’t hesitate to join the training especially because I really like cooking),” she asserts.

For this particular training, the participants were taught on how to process foods, make it presentable and eventually earn from it.

 

“We are more than privileged to be working hand-in-hand with the government particularly in investing to human capital development, a noble approach to improve their livelihood”, says Ms. Joy Co, the President of 1 and All Technical School.

“Our school’s mission is to develop a workforce of responsible and effective citizen to make significant contribution to the manpower demand locally and globally surpassing the requirements of the industries and the community”, “But beyond this, we also want to genuinely help people like Maribel, who are persistent and resilient, who uses her weakness to rise and succeed”, she adds.

“Human sa among training, gitagaan mi nila ug “starter kits”, galingan, blender, kitchen tools, ug uban pang materials para sa food processing, aron makasugod gyud mi ug negosyo (after our training, the school provided us “starter kits” which included grinder, blender, kitchen tools and other materials needed for food processing necessary for us to start our very own business”, she says.

Maribel further affirms that getting involved in community development programs of the government is really important. “Base sa akong mga na-experience isip usa ka community volunteer ug Pantawid grantee, daghan gyud kog natun-an (based on my experiences as community volunteer and Pantawd grantee, I have learned a lot of things)”, she tells. She confirmed that apart from the technicalities she learned from being a volunteer, she has also evolved as a woman. As a wife and a mother, she now understands the importance of communication and cooperation in sustaining harmonious relationship among families. Most of all, she feels confident about herself.

In her final statement, Maribel emphasized, “kitang tanang pwede mahimong instrumento alang sa kalambuan sa atong nasod (all of should take part in developing our nation, we can be instruments of change)”.

Written by Jamila M. Taha, DSWD Northern Mindanao

Posted in SLP

Street Families Receive Livelihood News

Cagayan de Oro City — Homeless Street Families in Cagayan de Oro engaged themselves in livelihood ventures, to gain employment and other livelihood opportunities with the help of the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s Modified Conditional Cash Transfer specifically designed to provide livelihood assistance to the Indigenous Peoples and Homeless Street Families.

Forty-one (41) street families received Skills Training on Massage Therapy NC II, Beauty Care Services NC II, and Housekeeping NC II from the Philippine School of Science and Technology, DSWD’s partner institution for this specific project.

The training aimed to contribute to the improvement of the socio-economic condition of homeless street families through empowerment and capacity building. This will prepare them for their livelihood ventures, employment, and other livelihood opportunities, in the future.

In preparation for their training, the families were given skills training orientation, for them to be aware of the training processes, allowances, and duration. “Recipients of this training will be provided with uniforms free of charge and livelihood tool kits during their culmination day”, says Mr. Bendisula, the proprietor of the Philippine School of Science and Technology.

“We are hopeful that through our programs, these homeless street families, will be provided with equal livelihood opportunities and eventually improve their living condition”, said Lexa Lappang, a Community Facilitator for the DSWD.

The skills training launched following the orientation and continued up to five (5) weeks.

Written by Jamila M. Taha, DSWD Northern Mindanao

Originally published: 29 March 2016 by DSWD Northern Mindanao

Visually Impaired Father, a certified Electrician

Mark Lester T. Echeveria, a Pantawid Pamilya beneficiary and a father of four children, now works as an Electrician in J.V. Angeles Construction Company in Sumilao, Bukidnon, after passing the NC II Assessment Exam on Electrical Installation Maintenance conducted by 1 AND ALL Technical School, one of the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s partner schools in providing Technical Vocational Skills Training under the Sustainable Livelihood Program.

 

Echeveria lost his one eye due to an accident he incurred years back in line of duty.

“Usa ka dagkong pag sulay ang niabot sa akong kinabuhi, ang maoy nakapawala sa akong paglaom kadtung nadisgrasya ko sa motor, nga maoy hinungdan nga gikuha ang akong pikas mata aron dili maapektuhan ang akong pikas mata (One of the most devastating and demotivating experienced I had in life happened when I incurred an accident that resulted to removal of my one eye to retain the other)”,

he narrates. Because of this, Echeveria lost confidence and quit work for about a year.

 

“Miabot ang mga kahigayonan, usa ka programa nga gi pangulohan sa DSWD na libre nga skwela sa kahanas, pero nag duha-duha ko tungod kay baldado ko, daghan kaayo ang akong mga pangutana sa akong kaugalingon, unsay makuha nako niini, makatabang ba ni sa akong pamilya, (when the opportunity knocks through the DSWD’s free technical vocational skills training, I had doubts whether to take it or not, I even asked myself what’s in it for me or will it benefit my family)”, he tells. But in the in the end, “everything was worth it”, Echeveria adds. “Ang akong pangandoy nga maka graduate ug mkasul-ob sa toga ako ng naangkon (my dream to graduate and wear toga came to reality)”, he says with pride.

 

Echeveria now feels confident that he will be able to provide for his family despite his impairment because of government’s untiring intervention and support“Mao nang dagko gyud ang akong pasalamat sa gobyerno ilabi na sa DSWD ug sa 1 AND ALL Techncial School (this is why I am very grateful to the government especially to DSWD and 1 AND ALL Technical School)”, he praises.

 

Echeveria earns about eight thousand pesos a month apart from overtime pays and benefits.

Posted in SLP