The Department of Social Welfare and Development successfully conducted its Regional Forum on DSWD Programs and Legislative Agenda, which was participated by the Provincial Local Government Units (LGU), representatives from the cities in the region, and Representatives from the different Congressional Districts of Caraga, last August 19. 2019, at Almont Hotels Inland Resort, Butuan City.

The activity, which was able to serve its purpose for the Field Office to provide an orientation to the participants about the programs and services of the Department (especially programs with changes in implementation guidelines), became a venue for updates on the 1st semester performance of the DSWD Caraga.

RD Mita Lim welcoming the participants for the activity.

DSWD Caraga Regional Director Mita Chuchi Gupana-Lim welcomed all participants with high hopes of engaging with the different stakeholders in furthering the effective and efficient services of the Department.

“We would like to inform you of what we do at DSWD, and we would like to provide you brief updates about our programs and services. It is of importance that we be on the same page as to our understanding on what our roles are in ensuring the promotion of the welfare of the poor, marginalized, and disadvantaged individuals, families, and sectors, especially here in Caraga,” Dir. Lim said.

During the discussions, the honored guests and participants, together with the field office management, Division chiefs, and program focal persons, tackled the roles of the Department and the stakeholders. Dir. Lim emphasized the need for support from the provincial/city government, especially in the implementation of the programs and services of the agency.

With the call for collaboration, Agusan del Norte 2nd District Representative, Hon. Ma. Angelica M. Amante – Matba pledged her all-out support for the Department, promising to raise during the sessions in the House of Representatives, any issues that would hinder the agency from performing its mandate.

Rep. Amante – Matba expressing her opinion on the programs DSWD, most specifically the Social Pension Program for Indigent Senior Citizens. She wishes that the program would have additional funds to cover more seniors needing the help of government.

“I have seen how DSWD has delivered for the families and communities. I will make sure that the agency gets what it needs to continue to serve the people, especially in Caraga,” Rep. Amante-Matba said.

Dir. Lim also emphasized the need for support for the Legislative agenda of the Department for the 18th Congress.

“Part of this forum is the discussion on the Legislative Agenda of the agency for the 18th Congress. Legislations play a critical role in ensuring the effectiveness of our services. We need Legislative support in strengthening our current programs and services, and for crafting relevant laws for the continuance of some of our programs,” Dir. Lim said.

Among the bills being pushed by the agency are the Social Welfare and Development Agencies (SWDAs) Bill, Public Solicitation Bill, Community-Driven Development (CDD) Institutionalization Bill, Domestic Administrative Adoption Bill, and the Anti-Elder Abuse Bill.

Surigao del Sur 2nd District Representative and House Deputy Speaker, Hon. Johnny Ty Pimentel personally expressed his desire to author or co-author some of the proposed bills, calling for partnership with Rep. Amante-Matba. Rep. Pimentel has been a constant supporter of the programs of DSWD, which has gained him a recognition as a Kalahi-CIDSS CDD National Champion in 2015, when he was still governor of Surigao del Sur.

“CDD has been a very effective mechanism in empowering and bringing progress to poor communities. If there is a program from government that needs to be regularized, it should be the CDD program,” Rep. Pimentel confidently said.

In a recently concluded National event of the DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS program held here in Butuan City this month, Rep. Pimentel also expressed his support for CDD.

Kalahi-CIDSS CDD Champion Deputy House Leader Pimentel vows support to the institutionalization of the program.

“I really came here to convince the leaders of this country that we must continue the programs of Kalahi-CIDSS because it has given solutions to the problems to the smallest barangays. Aside from the unconditional cash transfer (Pantawid Pamilyang/4Ps), I think this is one of the best programs that we have ever implemented in our country,” House Deputy Speaker Pimentel said.

Both Representatives have pledged for their support to the field office in terms of the proposed legislative agenda of DSWD. Dir. Lim lauded the commitment of both Representatives and called it a bold move to ensure progress in the region.

DSWD Caraga thanked all the participants during the said activity especially that the field office is facing a big task ahead of improving the lives of the people in the region, which has now been ranked as the 4th poorest region in the country.

 

Post activity photo shoot showing the participants in a fun and vibrant atmosphere.

With the result of the activity, the field office is confident that it will be able to deliver its end in improving lives of the poor individuals, families, and communities in the region. Together, DSWD and the different partners and stakeholders will be able to reach the different sectors who needs the services and protection of the government.