Marlyn and Marcelo Gelacio of La Paz, Tarlac are one of the beneficiaries of the Social Core Protection Programs of the Department of Social Welfare and Development. Gelacio family benefits from the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.

The family depends on Marcelo’s broom making business which is only seasonal, while Marlyn is a stay home wife caring for their five children. Marlyn became a beneficiary of SEA-K which is now known as SLP.

The Gelacios live peacefully in a two-storey nipa styled house. The house is almost empty except for some furniture like chairs and tables but no electronic appliances such as television and radio is present in the house.

The family has been included in the set 3 of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and before that Marlyn has been a beneficiary of the Sustainable Livelihood Program. The couple has been wise in spending the grants that they have been receiving and earned enough money to buy a tricycle and the money worth P 5,000 that they have received from SLP has been used to fund their existing broom business.

When broom making is not in season Marcelo is working as an ice cream vendor or as a taho vendor to provide for the family’s daily needs now that they have been beneficiary of Pantawid Pamilya he and Marlyn has no worries on where they will get the money for their children’s education.

As Marcelo said, “Hindi ka naman magugutom, hangga’t masipag ka.” Though life was hard for the family as long as there is willingness to find work and fulfill the needs of the family and with the help of the social core protection programs of DSWD, the Gelacios are more confident and equipped to face life.# (Bianca Alexine Castaneda-SMU)