MANILA –The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has recently graduated more than 2,000 beneficiaries of its Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) in the Zamboanga Peninsula region.
On Feb. 15, DSWD-Zamboanga, in partnership with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the Mindanao Auto and Technical Skills Training Center, Inc., completed its program for 70 SLP beneficiaries, who underwent training in shielded metal arc welding and motorcycle/small engine servicing in Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay province.
Meanwhile, nearly 2,000 Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries who underwent a three-week community-based training on food processing, electrical installation and maintenance, and motorcycle/small engine under the SLP program, in partnership with the 1 AND ALL Technical School, Inc., graduated on Feb. 16 in Buug, Zamboanga Sibugay.
DSWD-Zamboanga also conducted a skills training program with TESDA and the Molave Agri-Industrial Technology Inc. in Zamboanga del Sur.
Some 288 SLP beneficiaries from the municipalities of Mahayag, San Pablo, Labangan, Ramon Magsaysay, Josefina, Aurora and Molave, Zamboanga del Sur last Feb. 17 completed their training in shielded metal arc welding, bread and pastry production, organic chicken production, feeds formulation, disease treatment and marketing leading to organic production.
The graduates received certificates of completion and starter kits to encourage them to have their own small enterprise.
Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo emphasized the need to empower the poor through capacity-building initiatives accompanied by sustainable livelihood and employment opportunities.
“The new thrust and focus of the DSWD is to strengthen the program for sustainable livelihood so we can help Filipinos develop their own means of income and improve their lives through their own efforts. Through initiatives such as the SLP program, we want to encourage impoverished Filipinos to become involved in their own development so that they themselves can provide for their families and stand on their own feet,” she said.
“As a social welfare agency, what we in the DSWD want is to contribute to development efforts for Filipinos –to enable and empower them, help them so they can help themselves and one day stop needing the assistance of the government for their immediate and even long-term economic needs. Filipinos are very intelligent and resilient: all we need is adequate support and encouragement for the efforts we exert to improve our own lives.”
The SLP is a community-based capacity building program that increases the economic opportunities of the families through the different modalities that it offers, such as skills training, seed capital fund, pre-employment assistance fund, and the cash for building livelihood assets. It is implemented through the Community-Driven Enterprise Development Approach, which equips program participants to contribute actively to production and labor markets by looking at available resources and accessible markets.