Tag Archive | "feature"

Faith Renewed


Growing up we were told to follow authorities, that they knew what was better for us, to entrust them with our lives, and oftentimes we pay them to do this. As children we had teachers and mentors to follow, learn from, and lean on. Upon growing up and getting jobs there were bosses. Not to mention parents and older relatives that looked over us almost all our lives.

And then there’s our government, we indirectly pay them to lead us with our tax. To use it for our gain and development. And oftentimes we find ourselves disappointed. Feeling left out and ignored. Like a child, when their parents ignore them, they try their best to gain their attention, get in trouble and whatnot. A similar story to Roberto Caracol Gaan, he once trusted the government to take care of him and his family. He was content in tending pigs and lands owned by his wealthier relatives. Believed that the poor will be assisted.

With inflation and the increasing poverty rate, Roberto became one of those affected by this. Having to raise and feed his family he knew his current occupation was not enough. Roberto’s wife, Elizabeth, remained at home to raise their two children. But it proved to be difficult for someone earning a mere Php 150 per day under the heat and pouring rain. To budget and ensure their children ate well, he often used salt and soy sauce as his viand. This way of living angered Roberto. Not because he was poor but because he dreamed of giving his children a better life. With nothing and no one to lean on he joined Alsa Masa.

Alsa Masa has an unsure history of being a vigilante group or death squad that originated in Davao City back in the 80’s. But for Roberto this was a sure decision for him in order to sustain his small family and prevent starvation. But it was not long after that he and some of his comrades surrendered to the government once more. The existence of Executive Order 70, he was classified as former rebels, or what Ka Amihan likes to call friends rescued.

Roberto was identified as eligible to receive a livelihood settlement grant from the Sustainable Livelihood Program last December 2020. He used this funding to start his own milling business and eventually ventured in the buy and sell industry of rubber. Unlike before where he worked under the heat of the sun and the pouring rain, he does not have to do that now wherein he does his milling in a shed he built.

Admittedly, not every day seemed like it was easy to get up and start working. It never was. Not when he tended pigs and his relatives’ lands. Not when he joined Alsa Masa and became a rebel. And not even when he was granted and aided by SLP to start his own livelihood. But being his own employer, with perseverance and hard work, and knowing that the government did the right thing by him and his family, he gets up. Everyday. To tend his mill. To earn his keep, feed his family, and even start his own savings.

It is not just Roberto or Elizabeth, or their two children that gained from the livelihood grant. Their community thrived. Knowing that within their area there is someone milling rice for them. Where they would not have to travel some uncemented14-kilometers to the next barangay or sitio to buy rice. Roberto is grateful for the help and aid he has been given, but even more grateful that he is helping his community: selling rice and buying rubber from his neighbors.

Nag papasalamat ako sa ating gobyerno, sa DSWD lalo na sa Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP). Dahil sa inyo nabago ang aming pamumuhay, nakapag-patayo ako ng maliit na negosyo dahil sa tulong niyo. Unti-unti ko nang natutupad ang aking pangarap maraming salamat sa inyong walang sawang pag tulong sa aming mahihirap.

Ka Roberto | Livelihood Settlement Grant Beneficiary

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Marites: A Story of Survival


For more than a year now, the world has experienced and is continuously experiencing uncertainty and restlessness caused by the global pandemic known as COVID-19. The virus has affected and is still affecting the lives of the people not only in our country but also in other parts of the world. What started as a health catastrophe has developed into a full-scale economic crisis which destroyed economic activities and paralyzed the economy. No matter how big or small one’s source of living is, no one is exempted from its devastating effects, just like Marites Pasco Solatorio.

Marites, 45, from Purok Rose, Barangay Makilas, Ipil, has long been an ambulant vendor since 2006. Her husband, Remigildo Cabatuan Solatorio, 54, was a baker and has worked in different bakeries in the vicinity, until 2010 where he met an accident which caused his foot to be amputated. They have 2 children, namely, Remigildo Solatorio, Jr., 21 years old and is in second year college, and Christine Mae Solatorio, 17 years of age, and is currently a grade 11 student. She is a Pantawid beneficiary and receives Php 3,100.00 bi-monthly for her child’s education and health.

Marites and her husband worked hand in hand in making siopao and sold snacks at the Bus terminal. According to her, before COVID-19, they were able to sell 500 pieces of siopao per day. However, due to lockdown restrictions of the pandemic, travels and trips were prohibited thus resulting to no customers at the terminal. Because of this, their income from vending was deeply affected. She was only earning Php 300.00 a day which was just enough for their family’s meals.

To be able to survive during those times, she and her 2 children strategized into going around the vicinity separately to sell siopao. However, siopao is prone to spoilage because of its meat filling. Given this dilemma, Marites decided to also make and sell binangkal.

It was around the end of third quarter of 2020 when there were already limited bus trips that were allowed. With this, Marites went back to the terminal to take the opportunity to start selling there again. However, she still wasn’t able to recover her income since there were only few customers, sometimes there were only two trips in a day.

The Livelihood Assistance Grant program of the DSWD-SLP was an answered prayer for Marites. She was thankful that she was qualified to receive the said livelihood assistance. She received Php 12,135.00 and she used it all up to purchase ingredients. After she received her grant last September, she started to go around and sell her binangkal. But starting last February 2021, she and her husband ventured in making homemade bread since binangkal and bread have the same ingredients.

She says that after receiving the LAG, there is a great change in the status of their life. She was able to put up her own bakery after she was given the grant. She was able to buy glass shelf for her bread, cake molder, and mixer. Her income from her bakery ranges from Php 500.00 to Php 3,500.00 per day which they use for their daily needs such as electricity, water, school expenses of her children Her market and customers not only include individuals but also different store owners who buy their bread to resell it in their stores.

The oven that they are using now is owned by her sister and they are only borrowing it for the meantime. She has already a passbook savings account but no savings yet since she’s planning to buy her own oven.

Sa paghatag jud ninyo sa inyong tabang sa amua, dako jud kaayo among pasalamat tungod kay dako kaayo sya gakatabang pud sa among pamilya, nakapadayon ug skwela akong mga anak, sa inadlaw namong gikinahanglan na suportaran jud namo tungod sa inyong hinatag pureso dako jud kaayo kog pasalamat ana. Kung wala pa mo di pa mi karun makaplastar ug balik ug ingon ana. Mao na sya na dako jud akong pangayo ug pasalamat sa inyuha.

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Patubig, pamanang suporta ng komunidad


“Bilang Timuay, hangad ko lamang na maging masaya ang mga tao sa aming komunidad. Masaya ako dahil nagawa namin ang sub-project at lahat ay makabenepisyo sa pinatayong Water System Level II sa aming lugar. Masaya ako na naging matagumpay ito dahil sa suportang binigay ng buong komunidad sa amin”. 

Ito ang pangarap ni Timuay Junrey Andapit para sa kanyang kinasasakupan. Bukod sa pagiging isang Tribal Leader ay nagsisilbi ring siya bilang isang Barangay Kagawad sa Tinaplan, Leon B. Postigo, Zamboanga del Norte.

Ang kanilang barangay ay may layong 15 kilometro mula sa poblacion at nasa 70% sa mga taga rito ay katulad niyang Subanen. Kwento niya ay simple lamang ang pamumuhay sa kanilang lugar, karamihan ang pangunahing pinagkakakitaan ay ang pagbebenta ng kopras at goma. Kung mauubusan man ng bigas ay nairaraos naman sila ng tanim na mais, o kamoteng kahoy at saging na rin.

Dati na rin naging bahagi ng implementasyon ng Kalahi-CIDSS ang Bayan ng Leon Postigo kung kaya’t hindi na rin nanibago ang mga residente sa pagtanggap sa PAMANA IP-CDD. Sa katunayan gamit na gamit pa rin sa ngayon ang mga proyektong naipatayo noon ng Kalahi sa kanilang barangay.

Ngunit naroon pa rin naman ang kakulangan nila ng maayos na sistema ng patubig. Isa ito sa nakitang problema ng komunidad, kahit na mayroon silang water source ay wala naman silang reservoir. Ang kanilang water source ay nasa level I lamang at nag-iisa lang ang tapstand nito na hindi sasapat upang maserbisyuhan ang buong barangay maging ang kalapit nitong komunidad.

Ayon kay Timuay Junrey, kinakailangan pa nilang umalis ng maaga, pumila upang makapag-igib ng tubig dahil malayo-layo rin ang lalakarin patungo sa kinalalagyan ng tapstand.

Kung kaya’t napagkasunduan mula sa Tribal Leaders Meeting kasama rin ang mga opisyales ng barangay na bigyang prayoridad ang hinaing nilang water system.

Ang Water System Level II sub-project na kabilang sa implementasyon ng Batch 2, Cycle 1 ay nakadisenyo na may anim ngunit sila ay nakabuo ng labin-isang tapstand na nasadya sa matataong lugar sa kanilang barangay upang maibsan ang paghihirap ng mga residente dito sa pag-igib ng tubig para sa araw-araw na pangangailangan. Ito rin ay aalalay sa Lower Tinaplan CBFM Farmer’s Association.

Nataon rin sa nararanasang pandemia ay lalong nakikita nila ang pangangailan na maipatupad sa lalong madaling panahon ang nasabing proyekto. Natapos ang paggawa sa loob ng labing-apat na araw at noong ngang ika -29 ng Mayo 2020 ay pormal nang pinasinayaan ang Water System Level II sub-project na pinondohan ng PAMANA IP-CDD sa halagang Php950,000.00.

Ang PAMANA IP-CDD ay bunga ng pagpapalawig ng kasunduan ng Office of the Presidential Adviser for Peace Process (OPAPP) at ng Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) sa pamamagitan ng Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) na nagbibigay ng interbensyon sa paghahatid ng mga serbisyo at programa na nakatuon sa komunidad ng mga Indigenous People o katutubo gamit ang Community-Driven Development. 

Ilang taon na rin mula nang naisakatupan ng isang pulitiko ang kanilang patubig, ngunit laking pasasalamat ni Timuay Junrey sa programa dahil hindi niya akalain sa dami ng barangay sa Leon Postigo ay nabigyang prayoridad ang hinaing nila.

Aniya “napahimuslan na namo ang proyekto, nagpasalamat kog dako bisan pay lisod ang trabaho ug tambong sa mga meeting pero nalipay ko kay successful ang project sa among barangay. Dili na maglisod sa tubig tungod nga duol na sa among tukaran”.

(Nagagamit na namin ang proyekto, laking pasasalamat ko kahit na mahirap ang trabaho at kailangang dumalo sa mga pagpupulong, pero natutuwa ako kasi natagumpayan namin ang proyekto sa aming barangay. Hindi na mahihirapan pa sa pag-salok tubig dahil nandito na lamang sa aming bakuran.) ###

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Community Job Fair through SLP held


The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through the Sustainable Livelihood Program conducted a community Job Fair in Brgy. Hall of Mampang, Zamboanga City.

The said activity is in partnership with Barangay Local Government Unit, Public Employment Service Office and Department of Labor and Employment. Among the partners which participated are KCC Mall de Zamboanga, Shop-o-rama Group of Company, Mang Inasal, Gatchallan Agency, and Great Hands Service Cooperative.

More than 100 applicants signified their interest to apply in the different positions available. There were also applicants who were immediately hired by  and requested to process the needed requirements immediately.

The community job fair has been a good practice of the Sustainable Livelihood Program for almost 3 years. This aims to help increase chances for community members to explore employment  opportunities where the probability of being hired is high.

This activity is in line of the Sustainable Livelihood Program’s track, which is Employment Facilitation. It is a track that provides assistance to qualified member/s of poor households who prefer employment rather than engaging in microenterprise.

Sustainable Livelihood Program is a capacity-building program for poor, vulnerable and marginalized households and communities to help improve their socio-economic conditions through accessing and acquiring necessary assets to engage in and maintain thriving livelihoods.

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