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Hope Springs from Trust

There are only three things that you can never take back: a stone when it has been thrown, words when they have been said and time when it has passed. Being careful is crucial in order to not commit the mistake of saying or doing something without properly weighing your options.

Sometimes our perception of someone or something can get muddled because of what we hear or what we see. Sometimes we no longer resort to giving the benefit of the doubt because of premature judgment.

The Challenge

It is common for people to be adversarial towards the government and its departments because of unmet demands and, justified or not, their general lack of trust and dissatisfaction of the government’s overall performance. This has been happening for quite some time now and history suggests that it is something difficult to eradicate. It should be the crusade of the government to win the trust of the people again.

DSWD is not without its liabilities. It had and not because of incompetency but more because of things that are out of its control. As they say, no matter what you do, you cannot control what people say or think about you. You can only control your actions and make sure that you do it well.

The Solution

The Listahanan or the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR) is an information management system that identifies who and where the poor are in the country. The system makes available to national government agencies and other social protection stakeholders a database of poor families as reference in identifying potential beneficiaries of social protection programs.

It starts with the people and ends with the people. The department’s mandate is to aid the people in need. As its name suggests, it is for the peoples’ social welfare and development. It ends with the people too because after the department does its work, it is the people who will have to give a sign of approval or an indication of discontent. The first and foremost loyalty of the department is to the people.

You have to play with the cards that you’re dealt with. The department cannot choose the people that they’ll help or govern which makes the implementation of programs harder than it should be. But through all the countless struggles that it had to endure, the Department is standing firm, stronger than ever because it has experienced everything it could handle. What doesn’t destroy you makes you tougher as they say.

Changing Perception

You try to talk to common people and ask them about one word that they can associate with DSWD and they’ll come up with words like help, aid, assistance, support and the like. You can see people slowly embracing and acknowledging what DSWD Region 2 has accomplished for the mass and the promise of continuous assistance that the department offers for the future. They are again giving their trust with full optimism that this time is different from years before.

Mr. Dexter Addatu, an enumerator for Listahanan in Tuguegarao City said that he associates DSWD Field Office 2 with help or assistance to the poor people of the region. “Gobyernong (department) tumutulong sa mga mahihirap at nangangailangan,” Mr. Addatu said.

He also thought that DSWD Field Office 02 is definitely doing its part in identifying the poor people that needs assistance through Listahanan. He said that if ever he gets the opportunity to be a part of DSWD for more than just the duration of the assessment, he will definitely take it.

Ms. Jovelyn R. Perucho, an encoder for Listahanan said she believes that the agency is doing its function of helping the people, especially the poor. She also said that she will relish the opportunity, if given, to be a part of DSWD Field Office 2 so she can get some needed experience and to be able to share her insights as well. “Yes, to learn more and share my knowledge,” Ms. Perucho said when asked why she would be open to working in the department full-time.

Change is the Only Thing that’s Constant            

Times are changing and with it the ravages that it bring. On a personal level, time affects people through aging: you slowly start feeling your age, white hair start to appear on your head, you forget things more often than before and you gasp for air after activities that were easy to do just a couple of years ago. You begin to feel weak to the point where eating meals is a struggle. On a macro level, time affects communities, rural and urban through industrialization or urban and rural decay. We have polluted our world in the last hundred years even more than the total pollutants that were created in the first few billion years that our world has existed. On a positive note, time has brought about advancement in technology such as eco-friendly cars, solar power, and medical breakthroughs including cures for diseases that previously didn’t have treatment.

DSWD Region 2 has gone through changes with time albeit a positive one. Through the hard work of its employees it now reaches more people in the region than in previous years. Programs that target the needy is up and running. More people are getting assistance and as a result, you see people smiling and cheering again. People are not alone anymore. They believe that DSWD Region 2 through Listahanan will do its best to include them in the list of poor households and soon enough get the assistance that they deserve.

People have waited long to be recognized and be included in the list of the needy and it is about time for them to be a part of it. Listahanan was created for this very purpose and it is with this very purpose that the DSWD staff working behind it gets the inspiration to wake up before the sun rises and work way after the sun comes down to be able to include everyone that need assistance. ### By CHESTER CARLO M. TRINIDAD, Listahanan Information Officer

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