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Orientation on Completed Social Technologies Conducted for LGU Partners

June 04, 2019 – The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 02 (DSWD FO2) in partnership with the Social Technology Bureau (STB) of the DSWD Central Office recently conducted an orientation on completed Social Technologies to partner Provincial/Municipal Social Welfare and Development Officers (P/MSWDOs) of the provinces of Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya and Quirino.

The activity was conducted in two batches, with delegates coming from Cagayan and Nueva Vizcaya scheduled on May 29 to 30, 2019 and May 30 to 31, 2019 for Isabela and Quirino participants.

Among the completed social technologies discussed were the Comprehensive Intervention Against Gender-Based Violence (CIAGV), the Gender Responsive Case Management (GRCM) and the Aruga at Kalinga sa mga Bata sa Barangay which were discussed by Ms. Patricia Ana Y. Quines of the STB.

Mr. Bony Mar M. Lumabao, also from the STB, discussed other completed social technologies such as the Counseling Service for the Rehabilitation of Perpetrators of Domestic Violence (CSRPDV) and the Home Care Support Services for Senior Citizens (HCSSSC).

The activity aims to address issues on Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in the region through the replication of the completed social technologies.

The DSWD, through the leadership of Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista is aiming for the region to have at least five partner LGUs to replicate any of the five completed social technologies presented for the year, with a focus on making social services more efficient to the needs of the poor and marginalized sectors that they cater to.

Among the social technologies presented, the HCSSSC was already adopted by the province of Batanes earlier this year. Also, of note, the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, which was signed into a law by President Rodrigo Duterte earlier this year, started as a social technology before it became the flagship program of the agency in 2011 due to its usefulness in alleviating the economic situation of its beneficiaries while encouraging the latter to meet the former’s education and health conditionalities to avail of the program. ###

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DSWD FO2 Conducts Validation for Social Pension Program Beneficiaries

June 03, 2019 – With an eye towards helping the poor and marginalized senior citizens in the region, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 02 (DSWD FO2) conducted a validation of the beneficiaries of the Social Pension Program for Indigent Senior Citizens from April to May of this year.

The said move is in accordance with the mandate of the agency to ensure that the list of beneficiaries for the above-mentioned program are those that meet the qualifications mandated under Republic Act No. 9994 or Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010.

Under the said law, an elderly who is 60 years old and above is qualified to receive the assistance if he/she is sickly, frail or with disability, without financial assistance or permanent source of income to support his/her daily subsistence and basic medical needs and without any pension from other government or private institutions.

The on-going validation of Social Pension beneficiaries was permitted after the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) granted the petition of the DSWD, in a special En Banc session last March 29, 2019, to acknowledge the routine and normal expenses of the agency in order for the latter to continue implementing its programs and services targeting the poor and disadvantaged sectors during the election period.

DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista led the call for validation as part of the agency’s priorities for the year, stating it as one of his priorities to be able to help the poorest sectors of society.

The validation in the region started last April 27, 2019 with the validation papers encoded for data filing which is targeted for completion by June 2019.

Staff from the field office, field workers as well as encoders hired for the endeavor worked long days that also included weekends and even traversed far-flung areas to be able to reach and validate all the beneficiaries.

The quarterly payout of beneficiaries shall resume after the endeavor. Also starting this year, the quarterly scheme for payouts shall be changed to per semester.

The field office is validating 218,659 program beneficiaries in the region across the provinces of Batanes (1,444), Cagayan (77,281), Isabela (101,753), Quirino (13,138) and Nueva Vizcaya (25,043). ###

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DSWD FO2 Intensifies Information Drive, Installs Social Marketing Corner

May 20, 2019 – Just as information is crucial for every organization as a guide in decision-making and problem-solving procedures, the same is just as important for clients to be able to earn their trust and ensure good costumer service.

With this is mind, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 02 (DSWD FO2) recently installed the Social Marketing Corner, complete with copies of the Pagbangon and Pagsibol Compendium of DSWD FO2 Success Stories, brochures and other Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials about the different programs and services of the agency, artwork of Pantawid Pamilya Regional Children’s Congress participants as well as products of Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) beneficiaries.

The corner is also complete with chairs that clients can use while reading and checking the different information materials of the field office.

The corner aims to give information about the agency’s programs and services as well as display the products of beneficiaries as a way of increasing their marketing opportunity to clients whilst waiting for the completion of their transactions.

The said corner was first used during the launching of the above-mentioned compendiums last April 11, 2019 along with the visit of DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista.

It was also re-arranged when it was used as a makeshift studio for the taping of a segment for the DSWD Malasakit program of the Social Marketing Service (SMS) last May 5, 2019 where staff from the Disaster Response and Management Division (DRMD) were interviewed about the implementation of the Emergency Shelter Assistance (ESA) and Cash for Work (CFW) for Typhoon Ompong beneficiaries.

The corner shall undergo additional changes to cater to additional information materials that will be produced by the office for the year. ###

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DSWD FO2 Finishes Installation of New and Improved Citizen’s Charter Panels

May 08, 2019 – With the aim of delivering efficient service to clients, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 02 (DSWD FO2) recently finished installation of the Citizen’s Charter Panels strategically located in front of the main building that clients pass by whenever they visit the field office.

The said panels are in accordance with Republic Act No. 11032 otherwise known as the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018, amending Republic Act No. 9485 or the Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007, imploring agencies and government offices including local government units (LGUs), government-owned or controlled corporations and other government instrumentalities, whether located in the Philippines or abroad, to make transactions easier and faster, including the standardized deadline for government transactions.

The panels include the vision, mission and goals of the agency as well as the simplified process for frontline services such as the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS) and Travel Clearance for Minors Traveling Abroad (MTA) as well as information on other agency programs such as the Social Pension Program for Indigent Senior Citizens, the Supplementary Feeding Program (SFP) and the Adoption and Foster Care.

The panels where constructed last year with minor revisions done last April in time for the launching this May.

The field office hopes that the launching of the panels will contribute to its goal of providing Maagap at Mapagkalingang Serbisyo to the clients that it serves. ### 

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Passionate Service Amidst Difficulties

“Naiintindihan ko kayo dahil napagdaanan ko rin ang mga pinagdadaanan ninyo,” DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito D. Bautista uttered to the gathered social workers on a humid Thursday afternoon.

The secretary was visiting the region to check on the field office’s staff and facilities when he made a quick stop to the members of the Philippine Association of Social Workers, Inc. (PASWI) Cagayan Chapter who were gathered for a training to enhance their skills along social work.

Secretary Bautista, himself a retired military man, is of course not a stranger to the difficulties of life in the field, traversing rivers and muddy terrains just to get to far-flung locations as much an ingredient of his army life back in the day as it is to social workers working on the field these days.

He was basically saying that although comparing military work to social work is like comparing apples to oranges, the difficulty and commitment needed to accomplish the rigors of both tasks is just the same.

It is one thing to have a superior that understands the difficulties of his subordinates’ jobs, it is another to have one that knows the difficulties because he himself has experienced it first-hand.

Swift Visit

On the morning of the said day, the secretary arrived in DSWD Field Office 02, 10 minutes ahead of his projected arrival, without much fanfare.

He proceeded to the Office of the Regional Director for a quick change of attire then proceeded to meet with the field office management to discuss the implementation of programs and services in the region.

He then went on to tour the field office units and sections with Regional Director Leonardo C. Reynoso before proceeding to launch the field office’s pair of Compendium of Feature Stories called Pagbangon and Pagsibol, meeting and commending staff while inserting a joke or two along the way.

He then proceeded to talk to the field office’s employees in the multi-purpose building adjacent to the main building where he mentioned the priorities of the department for the year while thanking the staff for their commitment to work amidst the tremendous responsibilities given to the agency.

He even mentioned that in one’s professional career, if a person strives to succeed and does his best along the way, then the end will take care of itself.

Care for Clients

Despite a stance that typifies an archetypal soldier with his chin up, chest out and shoulders back, the secretary can be quite jolly around people especially when he met the field office’s clients in its centers.

He joyfully checked the artwork of clients from the Regional Haven for Women and Girls (RHWG) and got impressed enough that he even arranged for him to purchase one piece that he liked so much but with a catch, that he will only pay for it if it was sold to him with its fair market price, no discounts just because he is the secretary.

Despite the searing heat of the sun, the secretary trudged on and next visited the Reception and Study Center for Children (RSCC) as his smile warmed the hearts of the center’s employees and clients alike.

He then visited the toddlers under the center’s care and even carried some of them. He spoke fondly with the house parents caring for them and even took photographs with them.

His last stop during this trip to the region was at the Cagayan Valley Regional Rehabilitation Center for Youth (CV-RRCY). He checked the facilities under construction as well as the newly-built rooms that can house center and field office visitors in the future.

The secretary then spoke to the clients of the center, the Children In-Conflict with the Law (CICL), to give them advice on how to process the experiences that they had at such a young age.

“Yung mga nangyari sa inyo noon, kalimutan niyo na dahil tapos na yon. Ang importante bigyan ninyo ng halaga itong pagkakataon na nandito kayo para pagbutihin ang inyong mga sarili,” the secretary mentioned.

He even asked the clients who among them aspire to be soldiers one day and as the boys’ hands raised one by one, he promised to them that he will help make their dreams come true.

The secretary briefly retreated to the conference area for a quick sip of a buko juice prepared by center staff while chatting with the staff gathered about the history of the center.

His visit ended moments later after as he and his team hit the road back to Manila with a message of clarity to those he was able to meet; do your best and you shall be rewarded, whatever shape or form that may take. ###

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DSWD FO2 Bags 2018 PRAISE Award as 2nd Best Crisis Intervention Unit

April 1, 2019 – The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 02’s (DSWD FO2) Crisis Intervention Unit (CIU) bagged the award as the 2nd Best CIU during the 2018 DSWD Program on Awards and Incentives for Service Excellence (PRAISE) held at Landbank Plaza, Malate, Manila last Friday.

The field office’s CIU competed in a pool composed of 17 regions and emerged as the second best after bagging the the same recognition in 2016, providing consistent and efficient service to the people that it serves throughout the years.

The award was received by Ms. Cecilia Turingan, Social Welfare Officer II and Head of the field office’s CIU and Ms. Valentina Monterubio, Social Welfare Officer II and Social Welfare and Development (SWAD) Isabela Team Leader while being accompanied by DSWD FO2 Regional Director Leonardo C. Reynoso.

The DSWD PRAISE Award is given to outstanding employees, individually or in groups, for excellence in their performance of functions that contribute to the achievement of the agency’s targets.

The field office’s CIU won the award for its innovations in giving medical, education, burial and transportation assistance to indigent individuals and families throughout the region which include early work service, with its staff providing service to clients as early as 7 in the morning to make sure most, if not all, of the clients needing assistance are catered to during regular working hours and to prevent extending services at nightfall.

The unit also provides free medical service to its clients, with a staff providing free blood pressure checkup and even the provision of medicines to treat cases of high blood pressure. The unit also has a coffee steel jug, a water dispenser and styro cups strategically located in the unit’s waiting area for clients. Two (2) televisions showing the audio video presentations (AVPs) of the field office are also placed on the unit’s waiting area for further information on the other programs and services of the field office.

The field office also has strong linkages with local government units, engaging the latter on the requirements needed in the provision of assistance to clients coming from their localities before the assessment of social workers in the unit, thereby preventing cases where clients would need to secure lacking documents when they are assessed in the field office.

Service transparency is also a strength of the unit, with CIU staff who verifies requirements submitted by clients positioned in front of the client waiting area so the latter can see the pile of papers going from one verifier to another, ensuring transparency and making sure that clients are served on a first come, first serve basis but with preferential treatment to Persons with Disability (PWDs), Older Persons, Pregnant Women and the like.

To ensure best performance from the unit’s staff and avoid work fatigue, activities designed to relieve staff from the rigors of work are conducted on weekends to ensure that service to clients are not disrupted.

With the aim of bringing services closer to the people, staff from the Crisis Intervention Unit (CIU) also joined the field office’s Information Caravan on June 2018 with the aim of bringing DSWD programs closer to regional residents. As part of the caravan, CIU staff assessed clients on site and provided with assistance after undergoing assessment without needing to go to the regional office to get the same assistance, saving both time and other resources.

In her speech during the re-awarding held at the DSWD FO2 Multi-purpose Building today, Ms. Turingan thanked DSWD FO2 employees for the support while vowing to continue serving to the best of their abilities.+

To this end, the unit aims to deliver more of the same and find new ways to improve so it can provide maagap at mapagkalingang serbisyo to the clients that it serves. ### DSWD FO II Social Marketing Unit

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Making Changes Work for Women in the Field Office

March 2019 marks the annual celebration of Women’s Month which from 2017 until 2022 will focus on the theme We Make Change Work for Women, with the aim of empowering women to be active contributors to development.

The field office, being a social welfare agency catering to the needs of the vulnerable sectors like women, focused on conducting activities to drum up interest in the annual endeavor with a focus on events that will reach the most number of people.

Advocacy Through Radio Broadcast

The very first day of March was welcomed with a radio guesting at the DSWD Dos on Air at DWPE Radyo ng Bayan where the theme was discussed along with its connection to the department’s commitment of Malasakit at Pagbabago, furthering its goal of capacitating women to be dynamic contributors to progress.

A Zumba for the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 02 (DSWD FO2) staff promptly commenced later that day. The activity was designed to impart to participants the idea that for real development to happen, they must be physically fit to do so while also hammering home the idea of camaraderie and solidarity.

An invitation by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on March 6, 2019 at their radio program Ikaw at ang Gobyerno Lokal: LGRRC2 on Air was also taken as an opportunity to share knowledge on the celebration as well as to reach out to the agency’s clients and stakeholders for support to the endeavor.

Another radio guesting was done two days later at DSWD Dos on Air at DWPE Radyo ng Bayan where Attorney Ed Arman Ventolero of the field office’s Legal Service discussed the salient provisions of Republic Act No. 8972, otherwise known as the Solo Parent Welfare Act of 2000, including the rights afforded to solo parents.

Strengthening Partnership and Linkages

The field office also participated in the activities conducted by partner agencies and local government units throughout the month with the field office joining the City Government of Tuguegarao in its commemoration of Women’s Month from March 8 to 9 and even fielded a group of women staff from the field office to join the former’s dance competition.

The field office also took part in the launching of the Philippine Statistics Authority’s (PSA) 2018 Statistical Handbook on Women and Men in Cagayan Valley last March 13, 2019 which was participated by other government agencies.

Staff Capability Building

An orientation was also conducted by the field office for its solo parent staff last March 15, 2019 where Regional Director Leonardo C. Reynoso discussed the Situationer of Women in the region while Atty. Ventolero held a discussion on laws centered around women like the Solo Parent Welfare Act and the Magna Carta for Women.

Another part of the orientation was capacitating the participants with needed skills to be able to nurture and develop their children despite the absence of a partner, making sure that the former reaches their full potential as they grow and mature.

Simultaneous Celebration

The celebration of Women’s Month was also done in the 5 satellite offices through the Social Welfare and Development (SWAD) Teams in the provinces of Batanes, Cagayan, Isabela, Quirino and Nueva Vizcaya as well as its centers and institutions, giving their staff, clients and residents the opportunity to strengthen their bond and spend quality time.

As part of the above-mentioned endeavor, a Symposium on Women’s Rights and Republic Act No. 9262, otherwise known as The Anti-Violence against Women and their Children Act of 2004 was conducted for Regional Haven for Women and Girls’ clients.

The activities mentioned provide hope that the yearly conduct of the Women’s Month Celebration will provide an avenue in order to pursue continued empowerment of women in our society. ### Written by: Mylene E. Attaban, Social Welfare Officer III, Focal Person for Women

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Courage in the Face of Challenges

Natural and man-made calamities are chilling. When nature strikes, we are at the mercy of the catastrophe that it dishes. Calamities are but normal but without vigilance, properties, sources of living and even life can be taken away. Our best preparations can go a long way towards helping us overcome tragedies.

Challenges are but a part of living and problems mold us into becoming stronger and more determined. We surely develop more hope through trials and struggles. While living through these, there are people and organizations always able and willing to help. These are the moments that enable us to continue moving forward again.

Lilibeth Capa, a resident of Aridawen, Sta. Teresita, Cagayan and a member of the Agta group, is one of the beneficiaries of the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) Emergency Shelter Assistance (ESA) for Typhoon Ompong. Her family was heavily affected and never knew how they will get to stand again after the devastation caused by Ompong. Their shelter made of light materials were all but ruined and many of their things were damaged. Their shelter, which was slowly built through years of hard work, was heavily damaged after just a night of battering from the typhoon. Even their livelihood, selling rattans, was affected from the effects of the storm.

Idi ipigsa na iti angin nan, imyan kamin dyay evacuation center, idyay iskwelaan nga asideg kanyami. Intugot mi dyay dadduma a gamit mi, ken dagidyay nabati ket inabbungan mi lattan iti tulda. Duwa rabii kami nga nagyan dyay evacuation center, idi agsubli kamin dyay balay awanen ti naabutan mi. Naperdi tay balay mi ket haanen mabalin a pagyanan, (When the winds blew stronger and stronger, we decided to move into the evacuation center, in a school near our house. We brought some of our things while we left most covered by a tolda (flat tent). We stayed in the evacuation center for two nights, when we came back, everything we left was damaged. Our house was destroyed, and we could not stay there anymore)” Lilibeth said.

Edwin Capa, her husband, had at times found it hard to climb steeps after the typhoon to get rattan, their primary source of income, but he continues to push through given that the endeavor is their biggest source of income. Together they have six children, but poverty caused only one of them to reach secondary level and the rest didn’t finish their elementary education. Two of their children are already married.

Idi malpas ti bagyo, haan mi ammo nu kasano kami pay makarugi ulit, pati kar-ruba mi naperdyan met laeng, awan pagalan kanen mi ken awan ti naumno a pagturugan. Tatta nga nakaawat kamin ti tulong ti gobyerno, isu ti usaren mi a pangpaurnos ti balay, (After the typhoon, we had no idea how we could start again. Our neighbors suffered the same faith as many of their properties were ruined also. It was so hard to get food and we didn’t have a proper place to sleep. Now that we have received an assistance from the government, we now have the means to be able to repair our house)” Lilibeth added.

The family of Lilibeth Capa is one of the beneficiaries of the ESA who was given assistance for the repair of their house. The family received their assistance last March 14, 2019 at the field office’s multi-purpose building. The program assists in the shelter repair of typhoon beneficiaries wherein P30,000 cash is given to typhoon victims with totally damaged houses and P10,000 for the families with partially-damaged houses.

Dakkel a katulungan kanyami dyay kwarta ta isu ti pagpaurnos mi ti balay mi, sukatan min ti semento dyay plywood tapnu haantun nalaka a maperdi nu adda man umay a bagyo, (The cash that was given to our family is a big help as we will use it to rebuild our house. We will use cement rather than plywood so when the typhoon comes, it will not be easily damaged)” Lilibeth said.

Lilibeth knows that the amount given will not be enough to fully repair and restructure their house, but she knows that the assistance given is the first step towards realizing a house that is structurally sound and able to withstand typhoons. She also knows that her family can sleep more comfortably now that the assistance is ready for them to use for repairs.

Lilibeth says that having the assistance to start doing repairs have emboldened her family to start striving not just to rebuild their home but to also rebuild their life to provide a better future to the kids that are still under her care.

Trials of every kind are difficult but with the assistance given by the agency coupled with determination, a heart willing to move forward and courage to face any challenges that come, no problem is ever insurmountable indeed. ### Written by: Queenie Mae D. Cortez and Ronie B. Lapada, Cagayan State University (CSU) Carig Campus Interns, with a report from: Chester Carlo M. Trinidad

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