Starting this year, the minimum required age for social pension has been lowered from the original 65 years old to 60 years old.

IMG_1461Aside from the age requirement, qualified to be beneficiaries of the said program are those frail, sickly, or have disabilities, those not receiving pension from the Social Security System (SSS), Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), or Veterans Pension and do not have permanent source of income or regular support from relatives.

Potential beneficiaries may register through their Local Social Welfare and Development Office or at the Office of Senior Citizens Affair for appropriate assessment and recommendation to DSWD Regional Office.

However, applicants will not automatically become beneficiaries, instead they will be included first in the waitlist since the number of slots given to the region is only good for senior citizens who have been identified last 2015, before the directive on lowering of age requirement was given.

Slots of beneficiaries who are delisted due to ineligibility, failure to claim pension and demise, can be given to waitlisted applicants.

DSWD 9 Regional Director Atty. Araceli F. Solamillo said that with the new provision, more indigent elderlies will benefit 6,000 stipend every year, which is given on a quarterly basis.

“We hope that this time we can help more senior citizens who can hardly provide for their basic needs, such as food and medicines.” Solamillo said in a statement.

Currently, the program is serving 81,251 beneficiaries in the region, allocated with Php487, 506,000 for fiscal year 2016.

The social pension is one of the social protection programs of DSWD that provides P500 monthly stipends for eligible indigent senior citizens under Republic Act 9994 otherwise known as Expanded Senior Citizens Act.###