There is nobody stronger than a single parent.
Reane De Loyola Polinar [166809044-0231-00060] of Barangay San Ramon, Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur is a single mother to her three children, Renielou, 16; Rn Bryan, 15, and Lorie Jan, 11.
It was during the lone days of December in 2007 when her husband was shoot to death by an unidentified man. At this time, Reane and her children were dependent to her husband’s income as a motor driver.
Days and months passed, the mourning season has elapsed. Reane started to recover from the death of her husband. She learned to find means for them to live. With the support of her parents, Reane put-up a sari-sari store.
“It was never easy for me to start a new life. Until I realized that I have to live not for myself but for my children. With the support of my parents, I was able to start my sari-sari store business. I knew that this business cannot support all the finances at school considering that there are many sari-sari stores in our sitio. Lucky I was when Pantawid Pamilya came and I was chosen as one of the beneficiaries of the said program,” Reane relayed in a teary-eye.
“I was so hesitant then to answer all the questions of the enumerators. I really thought that this good-program was a “666” [or the number of a man associated with the beast]. But my doubts were rubbed-out when I started to learn how the program works for us,” Reane added.
Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program is one of the core poverty reduction programs of the government being delivered through the DSWD. It aims to eradicate extreme poverty in the Philippines by investing in health and education of children particularly in ages 0–18.
“Because of the intervention of the program, sending my children to school is no longer a problem. So much of help was given to me by Pantawid Pamilya,” Reane relayed.
Other than sending her childrem to the health centers and schools, Reane also managed to send herself to Family Development Session (FDS).
Her attendance in FDS has made her re-learn the basics on how to run a family, re-learn some important concepts on managing time, rights of every child and of a woman, and many things about family and community.
“This session has thought me and has enlightened my perspective about life. Now, I am more inspired to support the studies of my children. I want them to continue my dreams in finishing college and find work. A kind of work that only uses pen-something that is for professionals,” Reane conveyed.
With the humble assistance of the program, Reane’s eldest son is now taking college for school year 2015-2016. Renielou will take his degree on nautical engineering at the Holy Cross Colleges of Davao. At the same time, Rn Bryan will continue his studies in Hinatuan National High School while Lorie Jan at Tagbobonga Elementary School.
“Being a single parent means twice the work, twice the stress and twice the tears, but being a single parent also means twice the hugs, twice the love and twice the pride,” Reane proudly shared.
Reane’s family is the only self-sufficient program-beneficiary in the municipality of Hinatuan. From the subsistence level of well-being they moved to the level of self-sufficiency.
Reane’s mother is a retired-elementary teacher. Upon the retirement, her mother gave her an additional financial capital for her sari-sari store. Out of the growing principal, her family engaged to buying copra in their sitio and to the neighboring sitios as well. Hard work has stemmed to buying one second-hand delivery truck.
“Our children serve as our living treasures. Love them and feed them no matter what. Being a single parent is not an issue. As long as you have the trust within you, nothing is impossible,” Reane closed.
RA 8972 or the Solo Parent’s Welfare Act provides for benefits and privileges to solo parents and their children. It aims to develop a comprehensive package of social development and welfare services for solo parents and their children to be carried out by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), as the lead agency, various government agencies including NSO and other related NGOs (###DSWDFieldOfficeSocialMarketingUnit###).