Targeting System: Boon or Bane?

In a country where the poor are dispersed across many different areas, it is important for the government to know exactly where to direct its resources so that, no matter how scare these resources may be, they will be used by the people who need them the most. That is what the National Household Targeting System aims to achieve—-to know who and where the poor are.

Once known, these underprivileged sectors of the society will be the first in line to benefit from social protection programs such as health insurance, scholarships, social pension and conditional cash transfer grants as in the case of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program. This characteristic alone makes the targeting system a boon for the government and a big step towards alleviating poverty in the most poverty-stricken areas of the country.

It facilitates a more efficient and effective delivery of the limited resources of the government in that those who are most deserving of the assistance are reached out to. In a way, it also prevents those who have enough to fend for themselves to share in these resources which limits the already limited privileges that the poor should really be enjoying.

What is most notable of the system is how data was gathered in the areas identified as pockets of poverty. The Household Assessment Form does not ask the exact income a household earns like what so many social surveys in the past did. Instead, the socioeconomic status of a household is determined by other poverty indicators such as family size, state of house, presence of furnitures and fixtures, and the like. These indicators cannot hide the actual state of the household in terms of its ability to meet the family’s daily basic needs for health, education, and social protection. The inclusion of a household in the NHTS list already uplifts its living conditions as the family is able to put food on the table and to send their young children to school.

Looking at the system in the point of view of the government, the NHTS makes work easier in terms of identifying who should really be the beneficiaries of social protection programs. For planning and implementing agencies, results of the NHTS are very useful since programs and projects are more specifically designed to touch base with the poor sector. All in all, the NHTS is an essential tool in alleviating poverty where poverty hinders the development of the human potential. It may have a few minor glitches along the way but these are overpowered by the benefits that both the government and the poor enjoy—the poor are smiling and feeling happy about their privileges, and the government is given a pat in the back for hitting its target. ### By Ann Margaret Y. Lasam, National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), (This piece won 3rd place during the NHTS Essay Writing Contest for National Government Agencies on June 14,2013 at Crown Lodge, Tuguegarao City)

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NHTS conducts Essay Writing Contest for NGAs

The National Household Targeting System (NHTS) conducted an Essay Writing Contest for national government agencies (NGAs) on June 14, 2013 in Tuguegarao City.

Seventeen NGAs joined the said contest with the representatives of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Education (DepEd) and National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) as the top three victors.

Marydine L. Cambri of DILG bagged first place; Dennis John M. Espinoza of DepEd garnered second place; and Anne Margaret Y. Lasam of NEDA got third place.

The winners received plaques, cash prizes and some tokens.

“The NHTS is really beneficial to our data users. It made the works of our data users more convenient. They will no longer experience the hardship of choosing potential beneficiaries of their social protection programs. Through NHTS, the list is already there. It gives not only the figures but the faces and location of poor households,” Director Violeta A. Cruz said.

“The NHTS is highly commendable, because of their efforts and initiatives in conducting an essay writing contest as part of their advocacy efforts. I think, this is the first time that a NGA conducted an essay writing and it is good to note that there is an activity only for NGAs” , Cambri said.

Moreover, Ms. Pasencia T. Ancheta, Deputy Regional Manager, NHTS said, “We are happy that the participants responded on our invitation. This only shows the good relationship between NHTS and partners. We hope that our partners like NGAs are more encouraged to be our data users.”

The contest is one of the advocacy efforts of NHTS to continuously inform, educate and popularize NHTS among NGAs and other partners.

NHTS a special project of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), is an information management system that identifies who and where the poor are.

The theme of the contest was “Targeting System: Boon or Bane? “. ###Ailyn P. Aglaua, AA-V, NHTS

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FEATURE: A Ray Of Light

“Opportunities that come our way must be grabbed, for they knock only once in our lives”, said Revilyn Asuncion, a beneficiary of the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT), who graduated in the Housekeeping Training provided by the TESDA Region 2 for 55 days, from April 9 to June 3, 2013.

Aling Revilyn’s family hails from Barangay General Balao, Solana, in the province of Cagayan. She is a doting mother to her 3 children: John Alvin, 9; Jedah Mae, 8 and Maria Ellaine, 7. Since her husband, Mang Alvin earns a meager income by tilling a small rice farm, Aling Revilyn dreams of having a livelihood where she can earn good value of money, to further sustain her family’s needs. But all her bright thoughts are sometimes hampered by the dimming shadows of apprehensions.

“May mga pagkakataon na nawawalan ako ng pag-asa at paulit-ulit kong sinasabi sa sarili ko na hanggang dito na lang siguro talaga kami. Ano ba ang magagawa ng katulad kong highschool lang naman ang natapos,” she said in tears.

“Ngunit totoo ngang mabait ang Diyos, at may mga taong handang tumulong sa katulad naming mga mahihirap,” and her eyes started to sparkle.

The Asuncion family is one of the beneficiaries for the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer or MCCT. This program is the modified approach on the Conditional Cash Transfer popularly known as the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.

The whole family is very grateful for being one of the recipients of the program. Aside from the help that it gives to support the family’s health and nutrition, education of the children, and developing more positive behavior among the parents, the program also opened doors of opportunities for the family.

Aling Revilyn together with other MCCT beneficiaries, were granted scholarship for the Housekeeping Training of Technical Education Skills and Development Authority (TESDA) Region 02. Aling Revilyn and the group were also provided allowance for their food and transportation.

The 55-day training renewed Aling Revilyn’s confidence and trust in herself. She cast all the negative thoughts aside and now has a positive outlook in life.

Though she is so thankful that she receives cash grant through the MCCT, she is fully aware that the program will not last until lifetime. That is why, Aling Revilyn is now pondering on what she can do so that the sun may shine brighter for them. ###By RODOLFO CALINA URSUA, MCCT Social Case Worker/Green Meadow Development Foundation Incorporated (GMDFI), (MBA, FO2 SMU)

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FEATURE: Satisfaction Over Compensation

Volunteerism is a word that every individual understands. We know exactly the true meaning of this word. We can actually explicate and elaborate it further. We are so great in defining such word, situating fancy or impressive verses. Yet, do we really understand its meaning? And if we do, will we be able to put into realization the meaning it suggests? Why is it so hard for us to accomplish such thing if we really understand it?

 I am EDUARDO C. TUTAAN JR., Municipal Day Care Worker of Diadi, Nueva Vizcaya. I have been the MDCW of Balete Day Care Center and Bugnay Day Care Center for almost two (2) years.

 In my two years of offering my time, knowledge, skills and patience to the children who became my pupils through the supervision of the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office; happiness or satisfaction seems to be quite missing in this scrupulous field of specialization, although I must admit that teaching and caring for those innocent minds is one of my passion.

 I have always love being a role model, an educator, a second parent for the young children. However, I’m still searching for something that I do not have right now as a Municipal Day Care Worker, I want to feel something that I’ve been longing to feel. I want to feel fulfillment for what I am doing. I want to be satisfied.

When the Municipal Link of Diadi, Nueva Vizcaya, conducted the second wave for the administration of Social Welfare Indicator (SWI) of Pantawid Beneficiaries, I presented myself and offered a helping hand to Mac Pau. I volunteered myself. It is already summer anyway so it will not cause any conflict with my job as a MDCW.

 The Municipal Link was so thankful when I volunteered. He then gave me orientations and instructions regarding the administration of SWI. Fortunately, I did not encounter any difficulties in understanding the content of the SWI form since most of it are health-related.

 We walked kilometers from one house to another. We talked with the Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries. The elation we feel upon seeing the smile in each beneficiary’s face overpowered the scorching heat of the sun. What made our hearts jumped in joy was when everytime the beneficiaries express how the program brought positive changes in their lives. And there, in those precious moments, a feeling unknown to me slowly reigned in my veins. I began to feel proud of what I am doing. I felt satisfaction – into a different kind of hype that I have never felt in my whole life.

 I feel so fulfilled and euphoric for taking part in the implementationof Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program in Diadi, Nueva Vizcaya. Extending services to people who are in need, even in just a simple way is already a big achievement that I can be proud of.

 I volunteered. It really felt great. I will continue to be a tool to uplift the lives of our poor fellows. I will pull them from the quagmire of poverty. And no, I will not stop. No. Never. I have just begun.### MAC PAUL V. ALARIAO, Municipal Link/Diadi, Nueva Vizcaya, (MBA, FO2 SMU)

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FEATURE: Service Beyond Service

Mrs. Zessane Dawang, a Day Care Worker, is a epitome of a dedicated public servant.

Mrs. Zessane Dawang, a Day Care Worker, is an epitome of a dedicated public servant.

Community organizing is a wide-ranging job. Not just actually a job, but a life as well. Hence, to fully appreciate its nature, there is a need to maximize engagement with different people and amalgamate them to go into one direction. This becomes easier when there are people who are ready and ever willing to share themselves to make dreams come true.

This I further realized when I met Mrs. Zessane Dawang, a resident and the permanent day care worker of Brgy. San Pugo, Nagtipunan, Quirino. Mrs. Dawang has been an active partner in implementing Pantawid Pamilya in the municipality. She attends to the needs of the beneficiaries in Brgy. San Pugo. As one of the trusted person in their barangay, beneficiaries see her whenever they are in doubt or have questions. They seek her help and she is ready and willing to answer it.

According to parent leader Nora Dawang, they were assisted by Mrs. Zessane in preparing their documents during the community assembly which resulted in a 100% registration of beneficiaries in the barangay. Up to now, she provides technical assistance and models like a parent leader to the beneficiaries. She attends payout and assists them in filling up documents.

She was motivated to help the beneficiaries because she had seen them in need of her help. “Madami kasi sa kanila ang ‘di nakapag-aral. Naawa din ako sa kanila, kasi yung iba nahihiya pa at ako na yung nilalapitan nila noon pa. Pero gusto ko talaga silang tulungan. Mababait naman sila at masunurin” (A lot of them were not able to attend school. I pity them too because they are not yet that empowered. But, I am more than willing to help. They are kind and obedient, too) said Mrs. Dawang. “Gusto ko din silang makitang umangat sa pamumuhay nila ngayon” (I wanted to see them soon uplifted from their present economic and social condition) she added.

As the municipal link in the area, I am very glad and thankful for her active involvement in the project implementation. Their place is very far from the center of the municipality, yet distance is not a hindrance for her to be an active partner.

 Now, she is also a committed resource person who conducts Family Development Sessions in the area. In spite of her responsibilities as a mother and a day care worker, she is happy to serve her fellow.

 Indeed, she is an embodiment of a public servant whose ideal is service beyond service. By ARVIN T. LONGCOP-Municipal Link of Nagtipunan, Quirino

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RSCC receives P1M check from PhilHealth

“This amount will be a lot of help to the children of RSCC, especially on their medical needs. We are very grateful for this donation that you extended to us,” said DSWD Field Office 02 Regional Director Violeta A. Cruz after receiving the check amounting to P1, 193, 270. 00 from PhilHealth during the Turn-Over Ceremony at Hotel Roma, Tuguegarao City last June 14, 2013.

The amount was the proceeds of the PhilHealth Run held in the city last February 17, 2013. The Run was initiated by PhilHealth in cooperation with the Department of Health- Center for Health Development (DOH-CHD) which was simultaneously held in other eighteen sites and aims to raise amounts for the benefit of social institutions in the country.

Regional Vice-President Oscar Abadu of Philhealth said that they were able to raise the large sum of money because they exceeded the target number of runners from 3,500 to 5,000 respectively.

In return, Director Cruz said that the money will be used for the treatment of five children with medical cases, and for the education and other needs of the residents at the center.

The Reception and Study Center for Children (RSCC) is a center devoted to abandoned, neglected and abused children which is supervised by the Department of Social Welfare and Development. For region 02, the center is located at Lingu, Solana, Cagayan.

“This is the biggest donation we received so far, and we will be forever grateful to PhilHealth for this gift,” ended Director Cruz. ### By MARICEL B. ASEJO, Pantawid Information Officer II

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