Situated in one of the Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas (GIDAs) of brgy Pinya, Diadi, Nueva Vizcaya, the family of Rosemarie Pudao lived a very simple life. With only tenancy in an agricultural land to sustain their daily living, she and her husband Rogelio struggled to sustain the education of their three children.
With the advent of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) through the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT), the burden of having to send her children from primary to secondary school was lessened. She asserts that coming from a Tuwali upbringing, she and her husband had not understood the value of education and thus both failed to seek for a higher education.
Through the Community Family Development Sessions (CFDS) that she attended regularly, she began to understand the importance of placing value to a profession and the significant role that they, as parents, play in nurturing the dreams and aspirations of their children.
As for herself, she was motivated to be involved in her community becoming the Zone Leader for senior citizens even when she was not yet a senior citizen herself. This paid off and eventually she was appointed as a barangay Treasurer. Her husband on the other hand worked as a security guard for a Service Cooperative. Aside from that, the family maintained a small agricultural lot under tenancy and a backyard garden for home and additional income.
The meager income of the family prioritized the education of her middle child, Sonia, who was taking up Civil Engineering at the time while the eldest, Rovelyn was already married and separated from the family. Grants from the 4Ps program was used to augment the daily needs of the family and education of the youngest, Ryzza, who was a secondary school at the time.
Upon her graduation, Sonia was quick to support her family working as a site engineer for a private company in Makati. In fact, her daughters have pooled enough resources to help Rosemarie put up a small sari-sari store.
Upon Ryzza’s graduation from the K-12 program, the family is prepared to exit from the program as there is no longer any eligible child for the program to sustain. For Rosemarie, this is both a success and a challenge especially since Ryzza is now enrolled in Nueva Vizcaya State Universary for her bachelor’s degree in education.
“Ket agpadala met isuna (Sonia) ti allowance kini ading na, impaw-it na pay ajay laptop na tapnu adda usaren ni ading na ti online class na ta nangala met ti kurso nga ag mestra” (She, Sonia, sends allowance to her younger sibling and even sent her a laptop for her online classes for her course in education) she proudly declares about her daughters. “Ket kwarta da ata, agtintinulong da gamin nga agkabsat ta gamin idi adda maawat mi nga pay out ket aggudwa da kini manang na, isu ta nakalpas met ti civil engineering, ni manang na met ti tumulong kanyana. Imbagak met kanyada nga ag eskwela da ah ta isu mangisalun-at ti biag mi“.That is their money. They help each other just like when we received grants, they each got a share and now that she (Sonia) is an engineer, she in turn would help send her sister through college. I remind them that it is education which will eventually lead us out of poverty.
###with contributions by MAT Diadi