The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has recently declared suspension of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program activities amid crisis facing covid-19.

This is after DSWD Secretary Hon. Rolando Bautista, in accordance to the recommendation of the Inter-Agency Task Force, issued the Advisory No. 1 stating that all activities needing mass gatherings shall be temporarily suspended until April 14.

According to the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of the Republic Act 11310, more popuparly known as the 4Ps Act, the Secretary of the Department may suspend program activities through a declaration of “force majeure.”

This is to ensure the health and safety of 4Ps beneficiaries particularly that of more vulnerable sectors such as the senior citizens, children, and those with prior sickness, and the DSWD staff as well.

The suspension includes all cash card distributions, compliance to program conditionalities such as children’s attendance to school and regular health checkups.

In addition, the conduct of monthly gathering of the beneficiaries during Family Development Sessions (FDS) shall likewise be temporarily suspended.

In consideration of the “force majeure” situation, beneficiaries will still be able to receive their cash grants for the month of February and March.

However, all program beneficiaries are encouraged to continue their usual chores such as maintaining their backyard gardens to ensure healthy food for the family, encourage their children to read and study at home while classes are suspended, keeping their home and environment clean, and only seek information from reliable sources.

4Ps is a human capital investment of the national government that aims to reduce poverty by providing assistance to poor households for education and health. As of to date, the program has 287,000 active beneficiaries in Region IX and 4 million household beneficiaries nationwide.