Civil Society Organizations (CSO) in Cebu together with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII recently conducted an event dubbed as “Voice of the People” to strengthen its partnership especially in implementing core poverty alleviation programs. The event took place at Emma Hall of Cebu Normal University where active CSOs like Primary structures Educational Foundation Inc., Center for Industrial Technology and Enterprise (CITE), Paglaum Training International (PTI) and Lamac Multi-purpose Cooperative joined the activity.

“Dako kaayo ang involvement sa atong mga CSO partners on capability building sa mga partner beneficiaries. Ang DSWD giya lang. Usa kami sa mga National Agencies nga mohatag og programs and services apan dili namo mapalambo ang among mga programa kung wala kitang tanan, ga-convergence (Our CSO partners play a big role in capability building of partner beneficiaries. We, in DSWD serves as guide. We are one of the national agencies that provide programs and services and we need convergence to improve the delivery of these programs)” said DSWD-7 regional director Mercedita P. Jabagat in her opening message.
The CSO’s on their part thanked DSWD for the partnership. “We thanked DSWD headed by Secretary Soliman and the Aquino Administration for supporting our consequence to the grass roots level in terms of livelihood.” said Dr. Bonifacio, Mercado Jr., Industry Linkage and community relations manager of CITE. Mercado added that CITE has two programs, the 3-year Industrial technician program which focuses on the electromechanical technology and the Industry skills training program.

Ms. Paulette D. Liu, Chief Operating Officer of Primary Structures Educational Foundation Inc. disclosed that they have an on-going partnership with DSWD-7 through the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) that is expected to cover some 300 partner-beneficiaries. Primary Structures offers skills training in carpentry, masonry, reinforced steel bar installation, household services and housekeeping. Moreover, Janice Ubaldo, job readiness manager of PTI shared that they provide scholarships and skills enhancement trainings to DSWD beneficiaries. “It is our vision to help facilitate and process economic, social and spiritual reconciliation for under resource individuals in Metro Cebu”, Ubaldo said.

Partner beneficiaries also joined the event and shared their stories of positive change. “Nagpasalamat ko sa DSWD labi na sa Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program og Sustainable Livelihood Program tungod kay dako ni nga kahigayunan nga maka usab sa among kinabuhi (I thanked DSWD especially the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and Sustainable Livelihood Program because these programs will surely help improve our lives),” shared by Selvistre Basera. Basera is among the 250 partner-beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya and SLP who enrolled in CITE. He took up production technology and presently having his On-the-Job training at Lear Corporation.

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