TACLOBAN CITY – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has initially allocated PHP2 billion to help poor families in Eastern Visayas displaced by the health crisis.
DSWD 8 (Eastern Visayas) Director Marie Angela Gopalan said in a statement issued on Tuesday that they target to start the payout within this week.
“We have been conducting orientations with local chief executives and the municipal social welfare and development offices for the implementation of the social amelioration program (SAP). There are also needed documents and a review process before the payout,” she said.
Under Republic Act (RA) 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, financial support will be granted to indigent families affected by the movement restrictions meant to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Recipients will receive PHP5,000 for two months, based on the current minimum wage rate of PHP315 daily, according to Gopalan.
She noted that the financial assistance prioritizes those in the most vulnerable sector and the informal workers, granted per family, not individually.
“The government doesn’t have unlimited funds to cover all so we have to manage the fund and release them to the most deserving families,” Gopalan said, adding that other government agencies also provide financial help to those affected by the health crisis.
She clarified that beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) are automatically part of the initial SAP recipients.
They will receive their regular payout plus the additional amount to reach the prescribed emergency cash subsidy per region.
To fast-track the release, DSWD-8 will use the data from local government units to identify the target recipients.
The social amelioration forms will then be distributed to qualified constituents, which will be validated by the DSWD.
“We appeal to everyone who can afford to sustain their families during this time of crisis to give way for those who need it most,” Gopalan said.
The regional office targets to finish the cash release in the six provinces within April, as ordered by President Rodrigo Duterte. (PNA)