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DSWD, Metrobank tie partnership to help poor

The partnership between the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and Metrobank continues in this year’s collaboration project dubbed as “Bag of Blessing (BoB)” in line with the celebration of the Chinese New Year.

The project is funded by the GT Foundation, a foundation established by business tycoon George Ty, owner of Metrobank, to give back and share blessings by giving food packs to the underprivileged Filipino families.

Metrobank has once again partnered with DSWD, through the Listahanan, a project under the DSWD that identifies who and where the poor are. For this year’s BoB, GT foundation has allotted a total of PHP 10 million worth of food packs for a total of 10,000 poor but non-Pantawid beneficiaries nationwide.

For Zamboanga City, 456 poor are initially selected as beneficiaries of the said project which will be conducted on January 28, 2017 at Sta. Maria Elementary School. These beneficiaries are among the identified poor families based on the Listahanan database.

In a meeting with Metrobank, Listahanan focals already verified qualified beneficiaries based on their database of poor. The following are the target number of beneficiaries per area/barangay: Sangali=34, Canelar=172, Mampang=48, Zone II=4, Zone III=6, Guiwan=153 and Talon-Talon=39.

DSWD-9 Regional Director, Atty. Araceli F. Solamillo, expressed her gratitude towards Metrobank for this noble project.

“We, in the DSWD as the agency that protects and promotes the welfare of the poor, are very glad about this partnership. We see that the government and the private sector are on the same page in terms of delivering services to the public. Not only that we provide prompt service but also a kind of service that really cares for the clientele,” says Atty. Solamillo.

Metrobank’s BoB project has started in 2011 and has been helping the poor since then.###

DSWD in a meeting with Metrobank last January 18

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DSWD kicks-off 66th Anniversary Sportsfest

The Department of Social Welfare and Development through the General Administration and Support Services Division (GASSD) and Policy and Plans Division (PPD) hosted the week-long Sportsfest in celebration of the department’s  66th Anniversary with theme “Sama-samang paglilingkod na may malasakit” from January 23-26, 2017 at Tebi and Sean Recreational Center.

The festivity kicks-off with a parade of the five participating teams each represented by the DSWD employees. DSWD Regional Director Atty. Araceli F. Solamillo said in her message “this week is dedicated for your sportsfest. May we value the essence of the celebration with sportsmanship and trust, may we nourish our hearts with more compassion to serve the poor”.

“We may be divided by colors but we are woven by spirits. A spirit that is resilient and caring, quench by the tests of time. It is indeed manifested by transformation brought by our department that upheld the legacy for 66 years and counting”, Atty. Solamillo added.

Igniting the spirit of sportsmanship and camaraderie was the ceremonial lighting of the torch that saw all five colors of pink, blue, green, yellow and orange come together as one.

Among the lined-up events for the Sportsfest Week includes Basketball, Bowling, Volleyball, Table Tennis, Chess, Scrabble, Dart and Domino simultaneous with Bingo Socials and Pinoy Games and also the Search for Mr. and Ms. DSWD 2017.

The department is extending its appreciation to the Drum and Lyre Corps of Tetuan Central School, and to the Zamboanga City Police Office for joining and making the parade possible.###

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DSWD-9 Anniversary Tiangge opens to Public

The Department of Social Welfare and Development officially opened the “DSWD Tiangge” on January 17, 2017 at DSWD Field Office  IX grounds in celebration of its 66th year anniversary.

Various food and non-food products from Sustainable Livelihood Program and Area Vocational and Rehabilitation Center’s Sheltered Workshop are featured in the said Tiangge.


A garage sale was also initiated where proceeds from the sold items will be collected for a special cause.

Different partner-concessionaires also participated in the said activities where snacks, refreshments and RTW’s are for sale for the employees and walk-in visitors.

The agency aims to promote and patronize home and handmade products of the partner beneficiaries to help these individuals improve their social condition through entrepreneurship.

The Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) has been designed as a labor market program that is integrated with a social safety net program such as the Pantawid Pamilya Pilipinong Program. Its integrated approach is to add value to Pantawid Program by bringing the beneficiaries closer to reaching the poverty threshold and enabling them to be engaged in sustainable livelihoods.

The exposition of the beneficiaries’ products through the “Tiangge” is an opportunity for them to take pride of the outcome of their hardwork and effort.

These products are marketed through the Project Development Officers in Zamboanga Peninsula clusters.



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DSWD provides wellness activities for employees

The Department of Social Welfare and Development through the Protective Services Unit hosted week-long wellness activities for its employees as part of the 66th year anniversary celebration from January 10-13, 2016 at DSWD Conference Room.

DSWD Regional Director, Atty. Araceli Solamillo said that these activities will help the employees assess and check their conditions through various health and wellness services. “I believe that providing the staff with necessary care, health and support services will help them achieve efficiency and balance lifestyle at work.” She expressed.

“As implementers of various social welfare programs and services of the department, it is important for the staff to maintain their physical and mental condition to provide our clients with prompt and efficient delivery of social services” Atty. Solamillo added.

Among the services rendered to the employees are BMI screening, Dietary Counselling, Massage and Reflexology Services, Fasting Blood Sugar Check-up, Dental Services and among others.

Meanwhile, the DSWD Field Office IX has recorded good number of Blood Donors as it also hosted its first Blood Letting Activity in partnership with the Philippine Red Cross-Zamboanga Chapter. The agency has accumulated good number of rare blood types which is a good indication of possible donors in the future.  The agency is looking forward to have this kind of activity in a regular basis in order to help not only the staff but also other clients should there be a need for blood request.

The DSWD is extending its appreciation to the City Health Office of Zamboanga, Philippine Redcross-Zamboanga Chapter, VISTA Massage through the Area Vocational and Rehabilitation Center and all partners who served and responded in the invitation.

The activity resonate this year’s anniversary theme, “Sama-Samang Paglilingkod na may Malasakit”.

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DSWD marks 66 years of ‘Maagap at Mapagkalingang Serbisyo’

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is celebrating its 66th year anniversary this January.

The beginning of a new year brings in a replenished driving-force for the entire department and its workforce to work harder, reach farther and continue upholding its legacy that started sixty six years back.

Founded on 1951, the commemoration aims to celebrate the genuine service of the department to its clientele in over six decades. The department, being the lead agency in promoting and protecting the rights and welfare of the poor, marginalized and the disadvantaged individuals have been in the forefront in bringing positive changes and progress in the lives of its beneficiaries.

This year’s celebration is anchored on the theme, “Sama-samang Paglilingkod Na May Malasakit”.

“DSWD is not just an agency. It is an entity that resembles your loved ones. It cares for you, it protects you, it gives you the priority that you deserve. Sabi nga sa ating slogan, ‘Maagap at Mapagkalingang Serbisyo.” That kind of public service is imbued in the core of our call as social workers,” said Atty. Araceli F. Sollamillo, DSWD Regional Director.

The department also wishes to honor its workforce for its contribution in the delivery of service and implementation of its mandate.

In line with the celebration of its anniversary, the department has prepared several activities to create an avenue for its employees to build and strengthen camaraderie, solidarity and promote sportsmanship through the annual sports fest.

“This has been the tradition of the department. We organize sports events, games, to give our employees the opportunity to have fun amidst the deliverables.” Assistant Regional Director Riduan P. Hadjimuddin said.

From January 9-13, the department has prepared wellness-promotion activities for its employees such as blood–letting, dental check-up, blood sugar testing, dietary counseling, massage and reflexology services

This will be followed by the Open-Tiangge week which will showcase various products of the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) participants and Sheltered workshop of Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC).

The product display hopes to promote home/handmade products of its own clients and beneficiaries which forms part of the agency’s mission to help these people improve their social condition through entrepreneurship.

A garage sale will also be organized by the department from which a part of the profit will be used for a special cause.###

DSWD cares for its clientele as well as its internal workforce hence a week-long wellness-promotion activity is being conducted in the regional office from January 10-13 as part of its 66th anniversary celebration.
In this photo: DSWD Resident Doctor, Dr. Gracia Gacrama checks total body fat or the Body Mass Index (BMI) of DSWD staff. A high BMI can be an indicator of high body fatness. BMI can be used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems but it is not diagnostic of the body fatness or health of an individual.

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Dipolog City as third class city is surrounded by rolling hills to the southeast and Sulu Sea to the North. Known as the Orchid City, It has been a two-time Presidential Awardee for Child Friendly Municipalities and Cities (PACFMC) following the conferment on the “Seal of Child-Friendly Local Governance” by Council for the Welfare of Children and Department of Interior and Local Government in 2015. The city continues to implement the 4 gifts for the children (survival, development, protection and participation) and child friendly governance for the past 8 years now. Thus, it is noteworthy to know that the local government including the local barangay units have been implementing different programs that encourage participation and promotion on the protection of children as key factors toward championing its rights in creating a liveable community for them. Along this line, children are empowered and catered in the city as main actors in the realization of goals and nation building. With all these significant recognitions, there are Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program partner-families who have been blessed with exemplary children in their respective communities who contribute to them.

As the crickets begin to fade off their lullabies at night, the dawn starts to change and radiantly paints the hues of the skies with warmth. The beaming rays of the sun peep towards the small community of Brgy.Olingan, Zamboanga Del Norte.

At 5:30 am, the daily morning routine of young Reynald A. Baguio, a 13-year old, along with his brothers, starts the day by fixing their beds, feeding their animals, watering the backyard vegetables in the garden. They together sit for breakfast and prepare themselves for school. His mother Florenda, 35, trains them to become responsible children by means of helping in the daily activities at home. During weekends, Reynald joins his father, Rey, 37, to go on fishing using their small banca for a living. He braves the waves in order to help his parents sustain their livelihood while his two siblings wait for their comeback near the shores and organize the fresh fish. They sell them among neighbors. Selling the fish has been his father’s way of earning income.

At his very young age, Reynald has already manifested significant leadership traits which are characterized by being an epitome to his followers–his brothers and friends. Being the eldest among the triplets, Reynald knows how difficult their life is. He can recall the days when they had less food to eat. All of them endure eating hot plain porridge with salt just to suffice their daily meals. His parents really have to take and exert tremendous effort to sustain the basic family needs such as food and education. Meanwhile, considering that they are trio, the level of attention and equal care have also become the challenge of the parents; nonetheless, they are doing a  great job in raising them well with equipped character and embedded values to emulate from.


Reynald at home serves as the leader and initiator for Reymart and Reymond. At his age, he empowers them by becoming a proactive brother. He also acknowledges his brothers’ strengths and weaknesses, and he assures that equal treatment and sensitivity are employed. His brothers, however, reveal that Reynald is very active in school and has the academic edge and advantage among them. Reynald serves as their personal tutor in terms of their homework. Like other boys, they play Basketball as their favourite sport. They visit the nearby plaza, just like today’s young kids do, to balance between school and physical play.

Reynald and Reymond are identical in physical features while Reymart is the fraternal twin counterpart. Each one has unique characteristics to tell, but Reynald has indeed manifested exemplary sort of contribution in his family. Hence, they execute “togetherness” to uplift their living condition and to see that everyone reaches their goals.

-Back Story-

Florenda, Reynald’s mother, recounted the days when she almost died after giving birth. She suffered from an excruciating pain, coupled by fever and bleeding due to her pregnancy. She was unconscious for three days due to her very delicate delivery. Since she was insentient, she did not know how things flowed. Because of her condition, the doctor had a partial belief that she could die anytime. The doctor and her husband patiently waited for her to wake up. That was the time where her life was either one way of saying goodbye or one miracle way of living again to the real world. On a very fortunate note, she finally survived. When she woke up, consuming the air of hope, she realized that she had three babies. She was held in reverence and brought by pleasure when she knew the outcome of her bittersweet pregnancy. However, she had no idea how to begin with instant three sons. Her husband, a fisherman, had little income from his fishing. As a matter of fact, she and her husband had to endure a sort of predicament where they asked financial and medical assistance to some people to aid the needs of the triplets. Some even dealt with taking a child of other parents legally to become their own, but for one, she didn’t like the idea and rather stood up the promise in raising her sons through her own will and perseverance. In 2008, they became recipients of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.”


“Gusto ko maging Engineer para kung sakaling matanda na ang mga magulang ko at gusto nilang lumipat sa magandang bahay, ako ang bubuo at kukumpleto sa hiling nila (I want to become an Engineer because when my parents get old and when they want to transfer to a beautiful house, I will build and complete their dream),” he said. It is evident how Reynald wanted to repay the sacrifices of his parents by dreaming Big. Apart from knowing his life’s dream, he also excels in literary activities (i.e. oration and storytelling), performing arts (i.e. singing and dancing) and visual arts (i.e. drawing), and sports (i.e. playing chess). Evident from his versatile skills, he is an example of a well-packaged kid. His dynamic talents have brought him in many performing stages, competition venues and resounding applause as well.


Reynald’s greatest inspiration is his family. His family serves as his driving force to beat the endless struggles with gumption and passion. With this kind of inspiration, it leads him to execute excellence and greatness in school, hanging medals around his neck and handing him certificates with different honors and privileges. In his Elementary days (2009-2015), he was a consistent honor student with various awards. To support this, last March 2016, he actually graduated as valedictorian and received special recognition such as ABS-CBN Excellence Award, Best in English, Best in MTAP, Best in Reading, Best in Art, Journalist of the Year, Leadership award, Band Member of the Year, MLhuillier Academic Award and among others. In addition, he was also recognized with consistent Perfect Attendance under the project WATCH (We Advocate Time Consciousness and Honesty) of the school.  These achievements are best proof that nothing is impossible as long as he has an unconditional support from his family. Along with, this only shows that we all have the right and privilege to enjoy and to inspire in whatever ways we can amidst the chaotic notion that has been implied herein, and that is “poverty”.

At present, he is now on his 7th grade at Alberto Q. Ubay Memorial Agro-Tech Science High School in Dipolog City. Reynald steadily maintains his good grades, travelled to places and competed in various local and regional level competitions. He is the Classroom Vice -President, Sgt. and Arms of the MAPEH Club,Treasurer of the Chess Club and Grade VII representative of the Supreme Student Government.


As his personal advocacy, Reynald wants to encourage people to plant trees to save the environment. He maintains his concern for nature, for he has been joining several Purok Pintakasi, Tree Planting and Coastal Clean-up activities conducted by their Local Barangay. He is also active in attending the monthly Youth Development Session (YDS) rendered by his teachers. Reynald once revealed that one of the significant learnings he had among the several topics in the sessions was the Emergency Preparedness. He believes that being prepared during disasters will not only save him but also other people from casualties and other possible repercussions. For once, he never fails to attend the session because he knows it will help him change and develop his personal and social awareness.

Another notable contribution of Reynald was being a member of Barangay Council for the Protection of Children (BCPC). BCPC is a preventive program mandate issued by the Philippine Government to all Barangay’s. It is an established council that looks after the protection of its children.  He was chosen to be the child representative to be exposed, educated and informed on the important social issues such as Child abuse and Violence Against Women and Children (VAWC). “Nalaman ko kung papaano ako makakatulong sa pamamagitan ng pagbibigay alam sa Pinuno ng Barangay at ng Council kung sakali mang may mga report ng pang aabuso sa mga bata”. He shared. Reynald was also chosen to sit as Child representative in the Barangay Investment Plan for children where he joined several projects conducted such as Garbage collection and income generation.


His strong determination and robust faith to God become his armor to step up a good fight. “Takot sa Diyos, eto ang pinapahalagahan ko dahil sa lahat ng anggulo ng aking buhay, kung mayroon man akong pinanghahawakan sa lahat ng oras yun ay ang makibagay sa lahat ng nakapaligid sa akin,” he added.

Reynald remains his positivity towards his goals in life. As he grows up, he improves himself and manages to hone his skills through involvement in various activities.

And as the sun bids farewell, the dusk turns in quiet shift. The rays go off at six yet stars spark in brilliance sleek. When young Reynald finishes the day and sleeps, he always wakes up with great goals to leap.

When he takes the life’s journey step by step, he only not brings pride, splendour, and inspiration among his loved ones. He goes back home with a humble spirit and remains the child in him. At the end of the day, Reynald will always be the Clever Son of the South.


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DSWD concludes children’s month celebration

The Department of Social Welfare and Development field office IX, as the lead agency that protects the welfare of the children, celebrated the culminating activity of the children’s month with an advocacy campaign.

Prior to the culmination of the celebration, several activities were initiated by the department to advocate the protection of the rights and welfare of the children particularly against child pornography.

The department recently had its soft-launching of the #StopChildPornPH campaign, an online platform which aims to promote and strengthen public awareness on child pornography in the country.

Activities that are targeted to the young audiences were also conducted such as story-telling and film-viewing for grade school pupils of Tetuan Central School, on-the-spot poster-making contest for secondary and tertiary levels, info-graphics lay-outing contest and bite-sized video-making contest.

DSWD National Focal Person, Sayna Darwin, said that these endeavors involve the youth and children in this campaign for them to be able to protect themselves from threat and abuse of perpetrators.

This advocacy is getting a very positive response from the stakeholders particularly on the education sector that showed support in the different activities initiated by the department.

The culmination was held at the Tetuan Central School and was graced by various social protection advocates. Winners of the different competitions are as follows:

Poster-making Contest: Jena Criselle F. Baliton from STI College Senior High School (1st place), Aldrin A. Pantilanan from Ayala National High School (2nd place), Al-zhahid I. Puntukan from Talon-Talon National High School (3rd place);
Infograhics Lay-outing Contest: Ruiz B. Delos Santos and Rosette I. Paragas from WMSU (1st place);
Bite-sized video-making contest: “Jorgesa” by Charisse Macaso and Ruiz Delos Santos from WMSU (1st place), “Bintana” by Jean Patrick F. Gonzales and Judith C. Francisco from WMSU (2nd place).

#StopChildPornPH campaign is being pilot-tested in 5 regions to include regions 9, 3, 7, 10 and NCR.







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DOH confers RED ORCHID Award to DSWD-IX

The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office IX was recognized by the Department of Health as a “RED ORCHID Awardee” for having garnered a total score of 102.13% based on the set of criteria for implementing a 100% Tobacco-Free Environment and following the World Health Organization’s “MPOWER” Framework.

The DOH Red Orchid Awards is the Search for 100% Tobacco-Free Provinces, Municipalities, Cities, Government Offices, Government Hospitals and DOH Centers for Health Development.

The said award follows the World Health Organization (WHO) FRAMEWORK CONVENTION ON TOBACCO CONTROL Article 8 that recommends adoption of measures to provide protection from exposure to smoke in indoor workplaces, public transport, indoor places, and other public places, as well as REPUBLIC ACT 9211 or the Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003 that provides protection from exposure to tobacco smoke.

DSWD IX has undertaken major steps which paved way towards behavioral modification among the smokers. Advocacy activities were conducted through lectures, development and reproduction of IEC materials and poster making contest in order to generate materials on graphic health warnings.

In 2014, the agency created the DSWD Tobacco Control Committee to adopt and promulgate a 100% Smoke-Free Policy within the Field Office premises. Guidelines were formulated and disseminated to ensure a common understanding of the program.

Along with this campaign, Twenty-three (23) staff of DSWD underwent training on smoking cessation and counselling. Since the policy was implemented, there are four (4) confirmed quitters of smoking.

The agency was nominated for the Red Orchid Awards and subsequently passed the validation at the regional and national levels.The awarding ceremony was held on November 10, 2016 in Royce Convention, Zamboanga City.

In 2009, the Department of Health (DOH) issued Administrative Order No. 10 on COMPREHENSIVE 100% SMOKE-FREE ENVIRONMENT POLICY that calls on the absolute smoking ban in DOH offices, hospitals and attached agencies and encouraging local government units to do the same in their health facilities and other public places; while the Civil Service Commission issued Memorandum Circular No. 17 in 2010 on SMOKING PROHIBITION BASED ON THE 100% SMOKE-FREE ENVIRONMENT POLICY in all government agencies. (With Reports from Dr. Gracia Gacrama) ##


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