DSWD Assistant Secretary Victor Neri (3rd person from right), hands the ceremonial check to San Benito Mayor Gina Menil on June 9, 2021. The ceremonial check turnover is part of the distribution of the Livelihood Assistance Grant – a livelihood recovery intervention implemented by the DSWD, through the Sustainable Livelihood Program.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office Caraga distributed the Livelihood Assistance Grant (LAG) to 426 families in the municipalities of San Benito, Sta. Monica, and General Luna, Surigao del Norte (Siargao Island) recently.

The said livelihood assistance, with a total amount of PhP5,250,000, was processed and administered by the DSWD’s Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP).

DSWD Assistant Secretary Victor Neri and Surigao del Norte 1st District Representative Binggo Matugas, who also represented Surigao del Norte Governor Francisco Matugas, led the distribution of grants to the families in the island.

They were joined by DSWD FO Caraga OIC-Regional Director Ramel Jamen and the three Local Chief Executives of the recipient municipalities – Ma. Gina Menil (Municipal Mayor of San Benito), Fernando Dolar (Municipal Mayor of Sta. Monica), and Cecilia Rusillon (Municipal ayor of General Luna). Presidential Communications Operation Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar also took part in the activities.

Beneficiaries in Sta. Monica, Surigao del Norte wait patiently as their names are called for the distribution of the DSWD Sustainable Livelihood Program’s Livelihood Assistance Grant on June 10, 2021.

LAG is a livelihood recovery program that aims to help families whose livelihoods have been severely affected by the declaration of the community quarantine. Eligible families are entitled to receive assistance which shall not exceed PhP15,000.

In San Benito, a total of 109 families received the assistance. While in Sta. Monica and General Luna, about 148 and 169 families acquired the same assistance, respectively.

With LAG, beneficiaries have the option to propose and establish any livelihood project of their choice. In the three municipalities, beneficiaries proposed a variety of livelihoods such as sari-sari stores, food vending, fish and meat vending, hog-raising, eatery, frozen goods retailing, bakeshops, and a lot more.

Aside from the distribution of the livelihood assistance, the DSWD FO Caraga also delivered cash assistance to 100 residents in the municipality of Burgos through the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS).

During the distribution of assistance, DSWD FO Caraga also participated in the launching of the Aid and Humanitarian Operations Nationwide (AHON) Convergence Program. AHON aims to introduce a platform that is focused on providing an upgraded delivery of basic social services such as food and non-food items, medical and health assistance, educational assistance, and livelihood assistance to poor and marginalized communities.

“Hangad namin na makatulong sa bawat Pilipino. Kaya magtutulong-tulong ang iba’t-ibang ahensya ng pamahalaan upang maibigay sa inyo ang serbisyo at tulong na nararapat lang na mapaabot sa inyo. Hangga’t nandito pa ang administrasyon ni Pangulong Duterte, patuloy kaming maghahatid ng serbisyo sa inyo (It is our desire to help every Filipino. And so, the different national agencies of this government will work together to give you the assistance and service that you truly deserve. As long as President Duterte’s administration exists, we will continue to deliver services to you),” Asec. Neri said.

DSWD Assistant Secretary Victor Neri assures the beneficiaries in General Luna, Surigao del Norte that the national government will do its best to deliver quality services to the people.

As of June 26, 2021, about 5,317 families in the Caraga Region have already been served with the livelihood assistance grant for this year.

(Photo courtesy: Local Government Unit of General Luna, Sta. Monica, and San Benito)

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