“Mayo lamang nagkakaginiribo (They do nothing).”
This is the popular remark towards Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program recipients that Leoncia Bigay, one of its beneficiaries in Ocampo, Camarines Sur, would like to confute.
At present, she is the parent leader of 36 Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries in Zone 3 of Brgy. Salvacion and also a volunteer of Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS), another DSWD poverty alleviation program employing community-driven development (CDD) approach.
CDD puts the power in the hands of the people by giving them the opportunity to make informed decisions on locally identified options for development and manage resources to implement sub-projects that address needs identified by communities themselves.
Moreover, Pantawid Pamilya or conditional cash transfer (CCT) is a program that invests in human capital that is contributory to poverty-reduction. It provides monthly cash grants of P500 in health and P300 (elementary) or P500 (high school) in a family for maximum of three children, ages 0-18, enrolled in the program.
“Dakulang bagay ang 4Ps [Pantawid Pamilya] ta nakatabang sa edukasyon asin pagkakan (Pantawid Pamilya is a big help for education and food),” Bigay said.
Aside from the cash grants to support poor families in health and education, discussions on interpersonal, interactive and adult learning engagement are emphasized to empower and strengthen the relationship and ties among family members and the community.
The Pantawid Pamilya Municipal Link assigned to Salvacion, Domaida Latumbo, reiterated the importance of their roles as active citizens through regular meetings and monthly Family Development Session (FDS).
“Tinutukduan mi po sinda maging active sa barangay activities and maging huwarang mamayan (We teach them to become active citizens through community service and become role models),” Latumbo said.
Consequently, Bigay had already mobilized her members to become active members of the society through monthly community service.
As part of this, their newest undertaking was conducted last February 4, 2015 wherein all of them fused with other residents who joined in the clearing works during the ongoing construction of their drainage canal constructed through Kalahi-CIDSS.
Beforehand, Bigay suggested to Latumbo that they can render clean-up drive in Zone 3 when Latumbo asked for their community service initiatives in their FDS last January which impressed her for such great proposal.
“Kami man lang kaiyan manginabang (We will benefit from it),”explained by Bigay to Latumbo.
Bigay also coordinated to her co-volunteers, the frontline implementers of the drainage canal in Salvacion, through its head, Asuncion Ponce.
She recommended to Ponce that they are willing to assist them in any way to which the latter enthused about since she really promotes community participation.
“Maray pang magrarabus kitang mga magurang para makatabang kami sa Kalahi-CIDSS pati na sa mga laborers (It’s better for us parents to help the laborers in the clean-up for Kalahi-CIDSS)”Bigay told her colleagues.
Both women leaders tapped their barangay officials to solicit food for the half-day activity starting from seven in the morning until noon.
The barangay council sponsored pansit, bread and toasted siopao while the beneficiaries brought juice and water.
All Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries of Zone 3 thronged to the construction site and weeded out grass and disposed trash.
The laborers were delighted to see them carry and transfer rocks as part of the clearing works in the said construction.
According to Rosa Lustina, the Community Empowerment Facilitator assigned by Kalahi-CIDSS in Salvacion, that through their bayanihan efforts, they have shorten the time spent for clearing rocks and grubbing to where the drainage canal will be constructed.
The people of Salvacion agreed to propose the construction of drainage canal for funding because of the imminent threat of flood in the area affecting their livelihood and social conditions.
The barangay officials greatly supported the priorities of its inhabitants by providing 10% local counterpart contribution of the total community project cost of P1,973,000.00 in which Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), the development partner of Kalahi-CIDSS, provided 1,636,655.00 as community grant.
“Ang barangay council supportive maray sa arog kaining proyekto ta gusto mi ning development. Nagabot po sa P197,300.00 ang counterpart hale sa Internal and Revenue Allotment (IRA) kang barangay (The barangay council is very supportive. Our counterpart amounted to P197,300 from our IRA,” Brgy. Capt. Nicolas Dela Cruz.
Salvacion is also a recipient of DSWD’s Supplemental Feeding Program wherein 15 of 22 beneficiaries are also Pantawid Pamilya. In total, SFP caters to 1,585 beneficiaries to 56 Day Care Centers in Ocmpo.
The municipality of Ocampo is also a recipient 85 core shelters under DSWD’s Core Shelter Assistance Program (CSAP) and 207 of its senior citizens receive Social Pension downloaded by DSWD to the local government unit (LGU).
“Nagpapasalamat kami sa mga programa ning DSWD kaya gigibohun mi man ang samong maitatabang para makabalos man kami mask diit (We thank DSWD for these programs so we will return the favor by helping even in the simplest way),” Bigay said.