Food is one of the biggest aspects of a culture, and cooking is one of the greatest skills a person can ever have. That is why Edna G. Masiba, a Pantawid beneficiary grabbed the opportunity given by Sustainable Livelihood Program through Skills Training.

Edna, married to Edilberto, has five children. Edilberto farms for a living while Edna works as a day care worker at the barangay office of Muyo in Buug. Edilberto could only harvest every after three (3) months and would earn at least P5,000.00per month while Edna earns P5,000.00 from her job as well. As estimated for a family of 7, the daily expenses may amount to at least P500.00 a day for food alone. It was truly a struggle since all of their children are attending school, two of them were in college, one in high school, and two in grade school.

                As described by Edna, they did not have furniture at home, since it was the least of their concerns, they prioritized the welfare and academics of their children. Since their home was far from the schools in the area, the children going to college had to spend P50.00-100.00 for fare alone.  They were lucky enough if their father could take them and fetch them from school, but this was not a regular thing since their father usually starts at the farm early, living them to commute to school themselves. Life is tough for them during those times despite of their parents’ sacrifices and efforts to earn a decent living. The other children were forced to walk from their residence to school and end up having their shoes torn. Living in a far-flung barangay in the municipality was such a struggle because children, or students, needed to wake up early and get home late, since they need to walk to and from school. Fortunately, there are times when good Samaritans allow them to hitch on their habal habal.

                Providing adequate allowance for her children was not easy, as she had other expenses they had to spend on. To make things worse, the El Niño Phenomenon took a hard blow on them, when they were not able to harvest goods from their farm, and they did not earn anything for 3 months.

                Fortunately for the family, DSWD became an opportunity for improvement for them, as Edna was given a slot to be a Pantawid beneficiary.  She decided to be a full-time housewife since her husband needs more of her help in attending to the children. Edna was also chosen to be one of the beneficiaries of the Sustainable Livelihood Program projects on Seed Capital Fund for barangay Muyo and was elected as president of their association. Aside from this, she was also given the opportunity to be one of the participants of the Skills Training in Cookery National Certificate II on November 2017 since this was the most relevant training for their skills. Edna as a pantawid beneficiary said she used part of the financial assistance with the approval of her children to cook viands and sell it to the people in the neighborhood so that she could contribute and assist to the needs of their family.

                Through the training on Cookery NC II, Edna was able to widen her knowledge on cooking and was able to use or apply her learning on the training in their SLP Food House. She is currently working as a full time Head Cook of the SLP Food House which of course adds to their family’s income. She is also cooking pre-ordered meals from significant personalities like the Mayor of the Municipality and other LGU workers since she was able to establish a good impression on her cooking.Slowly she was able to provide enough baon for her children; and is also able to reward them with their wants. Also she was able to acquire furnitures and appliances to improve the comfort of the family at home.  Moreover, she could now send her three (3) remaining children to school without being frustrated with all the dilemmas that they will encounter along the way.

Unang-unasa ating PoongMaykapal, I’m so thankful na ganito ang narrating ko, mga taong naging instrument niya tulad ng mga sa government agencies na nag-facilitate sa mga projects, sa DSWD mismo dahil sakanila man itong under na programa and then, sa mga workers nito at lahat. So, nagpapasalamat din talaga ako dahil naibigay nila kung ano talaga ang nararapat sa mga tulad namin. Wala man akong masabi dahil hindi ko ma-measure kung gaano ako nagpapasalamat sa kanilang lahat.”