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DSWD reports over 200k Pantawid beneficiaries in Region 9 are now in self-subsistence

The Department of Social Welfare and Development Regional Office 9 on Tuesday revealed that there are 229,375 Pantawid households now with improved level of well-being, which is 82% of the overall population of Pantawid beneficiaries across the region.

The said households were identified to belong in self-subsistence level after undergoing the Social Welfare and Development Indicator (SWDI) Assessment last year. This means that these beneficiaries are now exposed and can readily access to resources and alternatives provided by the government to make ends meet.

Atty. Araceli Solamillo giving her opening remarks during her first meeting with C/MSWDOs of Region 9.

Atty. Araceli Solamillo giving her opening remarks during her first meeting with C/MSWDOs of Region 9.

“It is inspiring to note that while most of the Pantawid families started on survival when they entered the program, on the fifth year, 82% have moved up to subsistence level, while a good number of 15% of the once identified as poorest of poor households are now with sufficient capacity to live a decent and dignified life.” DSWD 9 Regional Director Atty. Araceli Solamillo said in her opening remarks during a forum with LSWDOs on Tuesday.


SWDI is a tool that aims to determine the level of well-being of Pantawid beneficiaries so that appropriate interventions will be provided to them not just by DSWD, but by other social protection programs implementers as well. Through the administration of the said tool last year, the department was able to identify 6,336 Pantawid households are still in level 1 (survival level), 229,375 are in level 2 (self-subsistence level) and 43,501 are now in level 3 (self-sufficient level).

Following the SWDI result generation, DSWD now makes available the SWDI data to its partner agencies which they can use as a baseline data for planning and implementing interventions to enable beneficiaries to pass through survival, subsistence up to self-sufficient standard of living.

“The SWDI is a comprehensive assessing tool where we can identify the gaps in the services that we provide the Pantawid beneficiaries, and through identifying these gaps, we can tap or partner with other agencies that can give them the appropriate intervention, like livelihood and employment so that they can elevate further to self-sufficiency level.” Solamillo added.

Survival is a set of condition where there is lack of inner and external resources which make households unable to resolve problems and survive in a daily basis. Subsistence is a condition that opens some resources and alternatives to the beneficiaries to surpass basic needs daily, while self-sufficiency means the households have already other sources of income and can already stand without interventions from the government.

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DSWD starts distributing rice to Zambo City farmers

The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 9 (DSWD 9) on Wednesday started distributing rice to 466 farmers in Zamboanga City who have been severely affected by El Niño.

DSWD thru the Crisis Intervention Unit conducted rice distribution in the barangays of Bunguiao (238 farmers), Sangali (49 farmers) and Dulian (179 farmers) as part of the department’s intervention, the Food-for-Work program (FFW).

Each of the beneficiaries received 25 kilos of rice in exchange for ten (10) days of work doing community projects, such as repair and reconstruction of community facilities, clean-up and garbage collection, among others.

Rodora Santos

Rodora Santos gladly claims her share of 25 kilos rice after rendering her services for 10 days under DSWD’s Food-for-Work project

“Nagpapasalamat talaga ako sa DSWD dahil napakalaking tulong nitong bigas sa amin. Wala kaming ani at income mula nung nagsimula ang El Niño. (We are grateful to the DSWD because this sack of rice is really a big help to us since we did not have any harvest and income since the drought started.)” says Rodora Santos upon receiving the temporary aid.

A total of 1.5 million pesos is allotted for the Food-for-Work program that will benefit around 2,000 farmers in the city.

The agency is set to complete distribution of rice within this month as augmentation assistance to drought-stricken families. Beneficiaries of the said program were identified by the Office of the City Agriculture (OCA).

Meanwhile, the other 3,000 identified farmers in the city will be recipients of the Cash-for-Work program.

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Paluwas Min Tahik (Rise from the Sea)

They have always been regarded as the people who jump in the waters of the sea for some coins. But beyond their knowledge and expertise in the command of the waves is a community struggling to rise from the tides of poverty. They are Bajaus.

In the coastal road of Barangay Caragasan, Zamboanga City, there live a community of indigenous people known to us as Bajau. Fishing is their main source of livelihood as they are experts in deep sea diving and fishing. In fact, they are widely known as “Sea Gypsies.” But they are also known for their unique culture that is reflected in their music, fashion and lifestyle.


Sama-Bajau claims her grant for her mat-weaving livelihood at the DSWD 9 regional office

During the payout conducted by the Department of Social Welfare and Development IX (DSWD) thru the Social Technology Unit-Comprehensive Program for Sama Bajau on Monday, we have met Basaria J. Tahaji, 32, a volunteer who selflessly give her service for the good of her community in the Ayuda Badjao.

Basaria narrates how she has personally seen the changes in the lives of her fellow Bajaus. She tells us how DSWD interventions particularly the Empowering Learning System and Values Formation provide an avenue of self-development among these Indigenous People (IP).

“Dati kung makikita mo ang mga Bajau walang tsinelas, karamihan sa kanila walang birth certificate tapos iniisip ng mga tao panggulo sila sa kalsada. Pero ngayon iba na.  makikita mo na talagang gusto nilang matuto. (Bajau before do not wear slippers, most of them do not have birth certificates and people think that they are a nuisance on the streets. But things have changed. You will notice that they are very much eager to learn this time.)” Basaria recounts her observations as volunteer.

Basaria attributes these changes to the learning assistance and self-development approach extended to the IP community. The 15-year volunteer says that her family and the entire Ayuda Badjao community are grateful that the DSWD protects and promotes the welfare of their tribe.

To express her profound gratitude to the department, she initiated a project that will help the adults and elders in their community learn basic education such as familiarizing the alphabet, write and pronounce letters and words and even read or formulate a sentence. Her Adult-Literacy-Program is conducted twice a week from 2 to 3 in the afternoon.

“Eto yung paraan ko para masuklian ko ang DSWD sa tulong nila. Tutulungan ko rin yung mga kapwa ko Bajau lalo na yung mga matatanda na hindi nabigyan ng pagkakataon mag-aral dahil sa hirap ng buhay. Meron nga kameng estudyante 72 years old. (This is my way to give back to the assistance provided by the DSWD. I will do my part to help my fellow Bajaus especially the elders who were not given the opportunity to study because of poverty. In fact, we have a 72-year old student.)” Basaria added.

On the other hand, aside from the educational learning system, the Bajaus also receive livelihood grants from the department. Most of which will be used to finance their livelihood in mat-weaving which is another thing that the Bajaus are known for. Others will put up sari-sari store.

Basaria is among the 2,430 Bajaus who were identified poor by the Listahanan. A total of 113,644 IPs are found to be poor in the entire Zamboanga Peninsula based on the recent household assessment conducted by the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR).

In 2015, 1,305 Bajau families were served by the department providing various assistance in education, livelihood and even in live birth registration.

The tide of poverty may have been high but evidently it becomes lower as interventions are directly felt by the beneficiaries themselves just like the accounts shared by Basaria. With such perseverance and compassion in hand, we can truly ascend from the waters of paucity.


15-yr volunteer, Basaria J. Tahaji accompanies beneficiaries of the livelihood grant for Sama-Bajau

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PHOTO: ICAB, DSWD conduct training on inter-country adoption


“Working with children is a very challenging working arena, where when we’re able to place the children into a permanent home, we feel we became a part and a significant person in the life of every child that we have placed out of foster home or permanent placement be it local or inter-country adoption”, ARDO Consejo Usman shared her experiences working with children through adoption during the ICAB’s weeklong Training on Inter-Country Adoption Program at Astoria Hotel, Zamboanga CIty.

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DSWD 9 urges newly-elected officials to prioritize poor households in the region

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) urges newly-elected Local Chief Executives (LCEs) to utilize the national household targeting system in determining potential beneficiaries of the latters’ projects, programs and services. This is to ensure that identified poor families are prioritized in the provision of social protection services.

Through the Listahanan project, an information management system under the DSWD, the LCEs would be able to cluster their beneficiaries according to its specific target sector, age, location, etc. This means interventions will be more responsive and effective to the disadvantaged and vulnerable sectors who in need the most.

In Region 9, out of the 704,872 households that were assessed, 1.9 million individuals were identified as poor by the Listahanan. Zamboanga del Sur was noted with the highest number peaking at 881,189 which includes the poor individuals in Zamboanga City. This is followed by Zamboanga del Norte with 620,678 poor individuals and Zamboanga Sibugay having 364,491. Meanwhile, Isabela City has 58,478 poor individuals as shown in the Listahanan database.

LCEs are encouraged to enter into memorandum of agreement with the DSWD-Listahanan for data-sharing. The database of poor families/individuals makes available to stakeholders such as the Local Government Units as reference in developing social protection programs and identifying its beneficiaries.

The regional profile of the poor households will officially be launched in Zamboanga City next month.

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PHOTO: Media Orientation on Juvenile Justice & Welfare Act

media or 2 media or 1

DSWD 9 conducts orientation on RA 9344 as amended by 10630 an act ‘Establishing a Comprehensive Juvenile Justice and Welfare System’ in celebration of the 10th year anniversary of the said law. Staff from City Social Welfare and Development Office of Zamboanga, police personnel from Women and Child Protection Desk of Philippine National Police and members from local media are present during the said activity.

The activity aimed to raise awareness on the salient features of the law and adopt system/s as mandated in the revised implementing rules and regulations.

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80 youths hired for summer job in DSWD IX


Zamboanga City – The Department of Social Welfare and Development Regional Office IX has accommodated 80 out-of-school, undergraduates, and graduates who are unemployed for the Government Internship Program (GIP).

These interns have been deployed in DSWD Regional Office, provincial offices and centers and institutions for 22 days which started last April 29, 2016. They will be paid Php210 pesos, which is 75% of the prevailing regional wage rate.

These GIP interns were selected based on the following criteria:

  • Applicants should be 18-24 years old;
  • College level or high school graduate;
  • Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) certificate holders;
  • For out-of-school youth, they should not have stopped school for more than two years;
  • Good health condition;
  • Monthly income of the family shall not be more than the existing poverty threshold; and
  • Youth who belongs to a household-beneficiary of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.
Ma. Socorro Macaso, Regional Focal Person for youth sector, orients the 80 GIP interns before they are deployed in their assigned work places

Ma. Socorro Macaso, Regional Focal Person for youth sector, orients the 80 GIP interns before they are deployed in their assigned work places

According Regional Focal Person for youth sector, Maria Socorro Macaso, GIP does not merely provide the youth with financial aid for their enrollment in the next school year, but it is also a way of honing their skills and potentials and introducing the young people to public service.

“The GIP aims to empower and equip the youth by exposing them to various aspects of government operations and for them to acquire adequate knowledge and develop right attitude in preparation for their chosen future careers.” Macaso said in her statement.

The GIP is one of the services offered for young people under the Unlad Kabataan Program (UKP) of the DSWD. The UKP is geared towards the total development of disadvantaged youth in terms of spiritual, economic, physical, psychological, cultural and social development. The GIP is part of the government’s efforts to strengthen youth participation in nation-building by exposing them to government service and training them on life skills. It also serves as recruitment mechanism for potential public employees, and provides financial assistance for school enrollment.###

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PHOTO: IOM, DSWD partner for a research


IOM Representatives from Geneva, David Preux and Caroline Masboungi visited DSWD FO IX to coordinate and partner for the conduct of research on Women’s Participation in camps as global initiative for Camp Management.

In photos: Conrado Natividad,Marilou Sese, David Preux, ARDO COnsejo Usman, Caroline Masboungi, Ingrid Daba, Rosalie Casimillo and Brian Lustre.

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