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As part of its Social Support Intervention (SSI), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT) track under the country’s conditional cash transfer program popularly known as 4Ps has distributed livelihood kits to members of the Indigenous People groups in the municipality of Liloy, Zamboanga Del Norte.

Out of the 37 barangays in the said municipality, 5 barangays have become recipients of the SSI that totals to 73 family beneficiaries among the various IP associations. The barangay recipients include barangay Baybay, barangay La Libertad, barangay Comunal, barangay Mabuhay, and barangay Tapican.

DSWD-9 Regional Director, Atty. Sittie Raifah M. Pamaloy-Hassan explains that the aim of providing SSI to the IP groups is to uplift the socio-economic status of the MCCT beneficiaries through services such as Cash For Work (CFW), livelihood assistance, grassroots organizing activities, family camp, and rent subsidy for Homeless Street Families (HSF) and IP Itinerant beneficiaries.

The DSWD provides cash aid and livelihood assistance to the IPs, especially those living in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDAs) through its Modified Conditional Cash Transfer Program. As of today, MCCT covers approximately 35% or 95,653 of the total number of active 4Ps beneficiaries in the region.

Apple Sandee Samla, 29, a member of the Kalibugan tribe, expresses her gratitude for being part of the LIBBAY (La Libertad and Baybay) IPs Association and for being a recipient of such assistance from the 4Ps-MCCT.

“I am so grateful to receive the livelihood kit which will definitely help my family’s livelihood for additional income,” Samla said.

MCCT is a sub-component of the 4Ps which uses a modified approach in implementing the conditional cash transfer program for poor families, including homeless street families (HSF), IPs, and Families in Need of Special Protection.

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DSWD-9 joins nationwide 4Ps anniversary celebration

ZAMBOANGA CITY -The regional office of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), together with 16 other regions in the country, simultaneously celebrated the 2nd year anniversary of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) today.

It can be recalled that the Republic Act 11310 or the 4Ps Act was passed into law last 2019.

As part of the celebration, a nationwide simultaneously graduation ceremony was held earlier today to recognize the family beneficiaries who are ready to exit from the program. Those that were not able to conduct face-to-face graduation ceremony were invited to attend the virtual graduation that was initiated by the national office.

Barcelona family from barangay San Roque represented Zamboanga Peninsula in the said ceremony.

Milagros Barcelona strikes a pose as she tells her success story being a beneficiary of the 4Ps.

“Hinde yo forever na Pantawid, sabe yo se. Life changing gayot el programa. Si nohay ese, no sabe yo si puede man enjoy mi maga anak el cosa sila tan enjoy ahora (I know that I will not stay in 4Ps forever. 4Ps is life changing. Without it, I don’t know if my children will be able to enjoy what they enjoy right now,)” Milagros Barcelona said.

Despite the constraints in mobility in the city, the regional program management office of 4Ps was still able to organize a graduation ceremony for the beneficiaries in Zamboanga City while abiding by the safety protocol particularly on No Mass Gathering policy.

As an initiative, the regional office went house-to-house among selected 4Ps beneficiaries in the city to personally present the households’ certificates of graduation. The house-to-house graduation was conducted last June 8 and 9.

DSWD-9 Assistant Regional Director for Operations, Fatima S. Caminan,
turns over the certificate of recognition to the Barcelona family in San Roque.

In Zamboanga Peninsula, first batch of graduates who will soon move out of the program reaches a total of 5,080 households of which 867 are from Zamboanga-Isabela City, 550 households are from Zamboanga Sibugay, 1,211 are from Zamboanga Del Sur, and 2,452 households are from Zamboanga Del Norte.

Among the 5,080, there are 1,193 families who already reached level 3 or “self-sufficiency” in the last Social Welfare and Development Indicator (SWDI) assessment. This means that they can already stand on their own even without the support of the program.

Meanwhile, the Department also held a Gallery Walk activity in their office vicinity for passers-by and walk-in clients to be able to see the highlights of accomplishments and activities of the program since its institutionalization.

DSWD employees check out the photos taken from 2019 to present

4Ps is the government’s major poverty alleviation program that invests in health, nutrition, and education of the poor eligible households. These alongside with the psychosocial and psycho-educational component provided through the Family Development Session (FDS) lead the beneficiaries to an improved and sustained well-being.

Among the program conditionalities include enrolment and attendance of children aged 4-18 in school; deworming of at least twice a year for children aged 6-14; pre and post-natal check-ups for women; preventive check-ups to children aged 5 and below and attendance to monthly FDS.

Currently, the program is being implemented nationwide covering more than 4.3 million households of which 287,165 are active households in Zamboanga Peninsula.

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Over 18,000 households targeted to graduate from 4Ps in ZamPen

Approximately 18,000 households across Zamboanga Peninsula are expected to graduate from the country’s condition cash transfer program or the 4Ps this year. This figure is based on the database of No Eligible Dependents which are subject for exiting from the program.

The Regional Program Management Office (RPMO) of 4Ps in Region 9 is yet to conduct a validation activity on the 18,000 households to determine the final number of beneficiaries that will be delisted.

“The 18,000 households is only a target figure based on the current data. Upon validation, this may be decreased depending on the actual situation of the beneficiaries. In fact, for our 1st batch of exiting households, we targeted more than 7,000 households however in actuality, only 4,837 were confirmed due for exiting,” Flordeliza A. Atuy, 4Ps Regional Program Coordinator, said.

DSWD has already held a few 4Ps graduation ceremonies in some parts of the region particularly in the municipalities of Jose Dalman, La Libertad, Katipunan, Baliguian, Siocon, Sirawai, Gutalac, and Labason in Zamboanga Del Norte; municipality of Naga in Zamboanga Sibugay Province.

Zamboanga City and Zamboanga Del Sur are yet to conduct their graduation ceremonies on the second semester of 2021.

The DSWD calls for LGUs and other social welfare stakeholders to continue providing interventions and services to the exiting households so as not to revert back to survival level of well-being.

DSWD-9 Regional Director, Atty. Sittie Raifah M. Pamaloy-Hassan personally graced and presented thecertificates of recognition to graduating households in Jose Dalman, Zamboanga Del Norte last May 04, 2021

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The 4P’s of Success

When you are tested and beaten by life, you become the best version of yourself. It is when we go through adversities that we are molded into the best form that we can be. A proof of this is a young lad named Kerwin from Liloy, Zamboanga del Norte.

With his undeniable talent in writing and vast vocabulary, he found the words that would inspire the generations of today. Read and enjoy the truest testament of hardships, of poverty, of hope, determination, and victory.

This is the story of Kerwin Fabillaran, a true 4Ps champion.


Poverty. Privilege. Perseverance. Positivity.

These are just among the multifold facets that a dreamer once went through before reaping the sweet fruits out from bitter experiences. If I wandered without this 4P’s formula of life, I would be akin to a paper on the ground – tossed aimlessly by the mercy of winds hither and tither. While everyone has his own fairy tale; I too, have a story to tell.

Poverty. Living under the slums of an economically-challenged family is never rewarding. Back when I was a grade schooler, I hardly had even a single coin in my pocket for my school allowance. I had to walk with an unparalleled pair of slippers or tightly-knitted shoes just to reach an almost 3-km distance heading to our learning site. I was not cynical to reckon that living under poverty was an everyday struggle. I never failed to remind myself that my elder siblings were my parents’ utmost priority. Looking back, I had seen how our guardians suffered from budgeting a 300-peso daily income from my father’s tricycle-driving job and my stay-at-home mother in order to suffice the needs of an incoming tertiary daughter, three high schoolers, two grade school children, and an infant. The shortcomings of meeting our regular meals were a pain in our tummies. My high hopes sank in a rough bottom surface. All the hardships that we went through were a treadmill of our day-to-day living. I eventually came to discern that once a problem became your lockstep, you surely will get used to it. I see poverty more than just a status, but a driving force to keep your feet on track.

Privilege. To be born out from poverty is deemed to be not an ordeal, but to continue subsisting with dearth is a sign of defeat. In the light of a losing battle against the knots in life, there will be a hand that holds and an arm that lifts you up before waning the ends. If ambitions are financial aids, everyone would like to avail. In fact, many of our life’s desires die in their budding stage. I can still reminisce how Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) had shed off the light when we became its beneficiaries in 2010. There were four of us who received financial support from the generous program of DSWD which were our reinforcements to excel better in the parlance of the academe. My mother being the withholder of the said amelioration, has been in a while supportive only wanting us to reach what we purposely aimed. Other than monetary support, it taught us a lot of things in life. It is overwhelming to note that the platform also provides education, livelihood tips, wellness and health to those members of the program. These helpful components are more valuable than any amount that I may seem as its intrinsic support to the households to eke out a living. With its unceasing assistance to the unfortunate and marginalized family, I have seen some tangible transitions in our home that really pushed me to ride on this roller coaster journey. When our eldest sister had her bachelor’s accolade already, still our financial status was inadequate to shoulder the necessities of my upcoming tertiary brothers. Due to some misfortunes, they stopped schooling and had to look for a job after high school. Consequently, I was doubtful if I can proceed to college in spite of a good academic standing being the class valedictorian in my elementary and as a with honor graduate in secondary. With my burning passion, I treaded a collegiate degree with brimful of uncertainties just like traversing in a puzzling route.

Perseverance. In my 4-year college experience, I tasted the most bitter pill of mishaps, I sipped the saltiest sweat of hard work, but I savored the sweetest syrup of being cured up amid with the presence of those ailing dilemmas. I was able to budget the 100-150 peso weekly allowance inclusive of subjects’ photocopies, fares, and other extra fees. I have to coerce the thought of surpassing from the tormenting week of possessing almost nothing. I have to escape from cynical mindset. The agony of my situation succumbed nothing, but a will to continue pacing. I have no one to blame, I did not throw stones. It is irrefutable that we befall under the poverty line. We oftentimes encounter food insecurity because of poverty. No matter how much I tried not to utter any rants and complain that would derogate me, I still ended up dealing with a saddening eventuality. The time traversed from days to weeks and from months to years unmindful of the prosaic routine I was continually dealing with. Others mocked with their 300-peso allowance, some complained with their excess, but I stayed on the thinnest line of suffering and was still hopeful that my day would finally arise. I never put mockery on my parents’ shoulders, though I am loaded with disappointments at times. I reached the peak of losing hope and demeaning chances of pursuing this degree due to the failure of providing financial assistance from the scholarship program I was once affiliated with. I spent countless nights of crying were my hope seemed to sink on the abyss of chances. Despite of the cruel and seemingly hopeless situation, we would still seek a blessing in disguise. Year 2016, I was enlisted as one of the ESGP-PA grantees. Indeed, our dreams are not cancelled, but rather redirected. I firmly believe that stars don’t always align according to how we want them to be. But that time, a guiding star led me to my destination.

Positivity. With the best privilege I have enjoyed along the run as an ESGP-PA grantee, I have seen the lines of motivation that it gives. I kindled the help it brought. Without wasting any centavo, I stood out with the legs it offered. I crafted my career with the helping hand it extended. I would not encompass the trials of being financially unable if not because of the opportunity it propagated.

To my fellow grantees, the sweetest payback we could offer is being concentrated to how it augments our finances and how we can have the earnest response from the call of being labelled as deserving grantees. A bounteous expression of gratitude to the DSWD for the initiative. Positivity is always the remedy. I dream because I have faith in myself. All the odds in life make you a complete being where trials are complementary. No student subsists with perfection and not all brawls with the challenges. I stood out because I believe that I can. Success is not measured on the awards you received, nor the recognition you emulate. To inspire people despite of bearing none delineates a successful man. Attitude over aptitude.

Now, I am pursuing my master’s degree in English education- Thanks to DSWD that once built the ladder up to my dreams. I am halfway there, I know I will. Special thanks to Ma’am Meriam Eve Amparado Dimasuay our active Municipal Link. Also, thank you DSWD Region IX Ma’am Dana Faye Chorla Napigkit and my CED Fam

Civil Service Eligible
Batch 2019

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Zamboanga Sibugay signs ordinance against 4Ps cash card pawning

The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of the Province of Zamboanga Sibugay recently approved an ordinance that prohibits any person and/or business establishment to require and/or accept cash cards of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) as collaterals for financial loans.

The ordinance stipulates the prohibited acts as specified in the National Advisory Council (NAC) Resolution No. 20 of the 4Ps program to include the use of 4Ps cash card and other program documents as collateral/s for loans, requiring or accepting 4Ps cash cards in obtaining any form of financial accommodation, and other similar transactions involving 4Ps cash cards.

It also cites the corresponding penalties to be imposed on individuals and business entities that will engage or violate such ordinance.

For private individuals and government official/employees the following penalties are enacted.

For the 1st offense, a violator will be fined with Two Thousand Pesos (Php 2,000.00) charge for every 4Ps cash card/program document; for the 2nd offense, a fine of Three Thousand Pesos (Php 3,000.00) for every 4Ps cash card/program document; and for the 3rd offense, a fine of Five Thousand Pesos (Php 5,000.00) for every 4Ps cash card/program document or imprisonment of not exceeding One (1) year or both fine and imprisonment at the discretion of the court.

Any group or lending business establishment is also prohibited from requiring or accepting 4Ps documents as collaterals for loans from their clients.

A fine of Two Thousand Five Hundred Pesos (Php 2,500.00) for every 4Ps cash card/program document will be charged to a violator for his 1st offense; Three Thousand Five Hundred Pesos (Php 3,500.00) fine for every 4Ps cash card/program document for his 2nd offense; and Five Thousand Pesos (Php 5,000.00) for every 4Ps cash card/program document and/or revocation/cancellation of the business permit shall be imposed for his 3rd offense.

Prior to the approval of the ordinance, the 4Ps Provincial Operations Office of Zamboanga Sibugay Province headed by the Provincial Link Evalinda Jimeno had several meetings with the author of the ordinance, Hon. Marie Yvonne V. Palma and co-authors Hon. Ma. Bella C. Javier and Hon. Jonathan C. Yambao where they discussed issues involving the alarming reports of cash card pawning.

As a result, the ordinance was enacted on March 09, 2021 and approved by the Provincial Governor, Hon. Wilter Yap Palma last March 24, 2021.

There are 1,656 reported cases of cash card pawning in Zamboanga Sibugay of which 34 accounts have already suspended and others are still being validated.###

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Woman Butchers Gender Stereotypes

In a world where physical strength rules and where generally men dominate, where does a woman stand? The answer is at a slaughterhouse.

Meet Luzvilla Quicay-Salbidos or simply Bella, a 43-year-old mother of four, who works at a slaughterhouse as a Butcher. To many, it may seem odd that a woman is working at a slaughterhouse where physical strength and endurance are two of the major qualifications for a job. But Bella does not seem to care, and neither do we.

Bella shares her story in an interview.

We visited Bella at her workplace all the way in Bangkerohan, Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay as we are searching for empowered women who demonstrates strength and perseverance amidst gender stereotyping issues.

Her hands are still soaked and wet from the work that she has been doing in the slaughterhouse since 2 in the morning. Her fingers are all pruney and wrinkled as she welcomes and tours us in her workplace.

It is a big, high-ceiling room with plastic curtains that cover the doors. The floor is wet and a little bit slippery. You can definitely smell the flesh of the meat and the moisture build-up inside the room.

Bella shares that out of 35 employees in the slaughterhouse, 33 are men and only 2 of them are women. According to her, despite the overwhelming difference in ratio, her gender does not define the quality of work or the performance that she gives.

Kailangan hindi ka malamya kumilos, parang lalake ka rin kumilos. Makisabay ka sa kilos nila na mabilisan. (Acting clumsily is a no no. You must keep up with the fast pace performance of men.)” Bella said.

As a mother of four boys, Bella inculcates this aspect to her children. She says that gender roles have never been an issue in their household. Ever since, she has taught her children the value of gender equality. As a matter of fact, her boys learned to do household chores that are typically considered and are associated with women in a stereotyped society.

Sabi ko hindi porket lalake kayo ay hindi na kayo gagawa ng gawaing bahay. Ganon yung sinasabi namin sa kanila, gender-equality. (I tell them just because they are men does not exempt them from doing household chores. We teach them about gender-equality,)” Bella added.

Gender-equality is discussed in the monthly Family Development Sessions (FDS) of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries as one of the modules that are taught to 4Ps beneficiaries. FDS is a monthly meeting of 4Ps beneficiaries where they learn modules on parenting, financial management, gender and children rights, among others.

Back to Bella’s workplace, her husband, Ronald, greeted us with a smile on his face and a butcher knife on his hand. He had just finished his duty and was waiting for Bella for them to have breakfast together.

They both work in the same slaughterhouse and earn 200 pesos from butchering and cleaning a whole cow. They start working from 2 in the morning until to 2 in the afternoon.

After their shift in the slaughterhouse, they go back home to take care of their new business venture in rice-retail that they hope would help them in their financial stability. They also prepare for the arrival of their kids from their online schooling.

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IP Communities receive livelihood kits from 4Ps

85 Indigenous People (IP) families from the Municipality of Mabuhay, Zamboanga Sibugay have received motorized boats as livelihood kits from the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) under the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT) track.

Turn-over Ceremony of Motorized Boats to MCCT Associations in 4 Barangays of Mabuhay, Zamboanga Sibugay Province

Four barangays and associations benefited from the initiative namely: Taguisian Islanders Association (42 beneficiaries); Tandu-Comot Taguisian Islanders Association (22 beneficiaries); and CaliPam (Caliran and Pamansaan) Islanders Association with 21 beneficiaries.

The turn-over of livelihood kits was possible through the Support Service Intervention (SSI) feature of the program which aims to uplift the socio-economic status of the MCCT beneficiaries through services such as Cash For Work (CFW), livelihood assistance, grassroots organizing activities, family camp, and rent subsidy for Homeless Street Families (HSF) and IP Itinerant beneficiaries.

The Department has utilized a total amount of P360,000 for these motorized boats livelihood SSI.

According to the MCCT Focal in DSWD-9, Germiah Bongabong, “the 4Ps program does not only provide grants for the beneficiaries. More than that, we engage and empower them through capacity building and skills trainings so they themselves could create livelihood opportunities in their communities.”

Missong A. Hadjael, 35, a member of Sama Tribe in the municipality of Mabuhay, Zamboanga Sibugay, recounted his story as a beneficiary of the 4Ps MCCT as he gratefully rides his new motorboat.

Missong Hadjael on his first ride on the newly turned-over motorized boat to their association.

“Malaking tulong ito sa aking pamilya para matustusan ko ang mga pangangailangan nila, lalo na sa pag aaral ng anak ko… natutugunan ang aming pangkabuhayan, gaya nito napabilanga ako sa isang asosasyon na kung saan kami ay nabigyan ng pumpboat na magagamit namin para madagdagan pa ang aming pangkabuhayan. (This is a big help to my family so I could provide their needs especially in the education of my children.. our livelihood needs are met such as this motorized boat which we acquired from being part of the association),” Hadjael said.

The DSWD provides cash aid to the IPs, especially those living in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDAs) through its Modified Conditional Cash Transfer Program. As of today, the program has a total of 95,653 active beneficiaries in Region 9.

DSWD’s Memorandum Circular No. 2 series of 2018 states that the cash transfer program is a sub-component of the 4Ps, which uses a modified approach in implementing the conditional cash transfer program for poor families, including homeless street families (HSF), IPs, and Families in Need of Special Protection.

Turn-Over Ceremony held at Pamansaan, Municipality of Mabuhay, Zamboanga Sibugay last February 23, 2021

Photos by: Abnier Muallam (Community Facilitator)

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Households may take part in Listahanan 3 validation beginning next week

ZAMBOANGA CITY – In order to ensure the credibility of the government’s database of poor households, communities are encouraged to take part during the regional validation of Listahanan 3’s initial list of poor households beginning next week in Zamboanga City, Isabela City, Basilan, and Sibuco, Zamboanga del Norte.

Those (households) who are concerned can either file an appeal or grievance through the Community Desk Validation designated in their respective barangays or online filing via

After the posting of the initial list of poor households in conspicuous places in the barangays, the receiving and resolving of grievances shall begin immediately and will be done at least for four weeks.

The Listahanan 3 Area Supervisor (AS) assigned in the barangay shall be responsible for the receiving and processing of all grievances using the Validation Search Application (VSA). Only grievances from households residing in the barangay shall be accommodated by the assigned field personnel.

Meanwhile, all grievances received through the Listahanan 3 Validation website shall be synchronized with the VSA and Grievance Tracking and Monitoring System (GTMS) for processing. 

Furthermore, those households in rural barangays/puroks/sitios that were not covered during the Data Collection Phase will no longer be required to file grievances. They will be automatically included in the list of households for assessment.

As a rule, any person can inquire whether an individual is in the initial list of assessed households for Listahanan 3. However, the complainant must adhere to the conditions of filing a grievance. He or she must provide his or her complete name, name of the person being inquired about, and nature of complaint or grievance.

The AS will then check if the person being inquired or complained has a record in the database. If no record is found, the AS shall require the complainant to provide other household information.

The AS will take note of all the names requested to be searched, and whether they were found or not found in the database. He or she is tasked to classify the nature of every complaint received.

Upon determination of the complainant’s grievance, the AS must first establish his or her eligibility by requiring him or her to provide significant information regarding the concerned household.  The complainant should also present any government-issued ID or valid photo ID as proof of identity. If he or she is unable to do any of the above, the AS shall inform the complainant that (1) he or she has failed the verification procedure and (2) another eligible person can come and file a grievance.

For those appeals related to re-assessment of the household, the AS will have to inform the complainant that: (a) the conduct of re-assessment shall be decided by the Barangay Verification Team (BVT) and Local Verification Committee; (b) the re-interview shall be unannounced; and (c) there will only be one attempt to secure the interview. The AS  will write the Tracking Number and the name of the complainant in the corresponding Consolidated Grievance Log and the complainant will be required to affix his/her signature or thumb mark in the space provided for the complaint to be valid.

On the other hand, the validation activity for the remaining provinces or areas in Zamboanga Peninsula will begin its operations next month.

To know more about the different grievances that can be filed, kindly refer to the info graphic below:

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