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DSWD delivers aid to Mayon- affected families

By Connie Calipay

LEGAZPI CITY —- The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)-5 (Bicol) has distributed PHP20.2 million worth of livelihood assistance through its Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) to the families in Albay province that were affected by Mount Mayon's unrest.

Ram Joseph Zaragoza, DSWD-Bicol project develop-ment officer for the SLP, said at least 1,014 households from the towns of Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Tabaco City and Sto. Domingo received the grant over the weekend.

“Each family receives livelihood grants of PHP20,000 from the program. The purpose of the grant is for the restoration and continuation of their affected livelihoods,” Zaragoza said in an interview on Monday.

He said the distribution of the livelihood assistance to the qualified beneficiaries was assessed by the agency.

“The recipients of the grant were evacuees with livelihood who were affected during their evacuation for five months because of the Mayon infusive eruption,” he added.

LIVELIHOOD AID. A staff of the Department of Social Welfare and Development-Bicol attends to a resident of Albay province whose family was among those affected by the restiveness of Mt. Mayon in this undated photo. At least 1,014 families received a total of PHP20.2 million in livelihood assistance under the Sustainable Livelihood Program of the DSWD. (Photo courtesy of DSWD-Bicol)

Zaragosa said they will continue to monitor the implementation of the program, saying “We want to ensure the sustainability of the livelihood.”

In a statement, sari-sari store owner Gina Nebreja of Barangay Sua, Camalig town shared that she had to close down her small business and also sell their pigs and cattle when they evacuated from their home as Mayon Volcano began erupting several months ago.

“The PHP20,000 we received was a big help, it will serve as capital for our sari-sari store,” Nebreja, who is mother to eight children, said in the local dialect.

She and her family still have no substantial income since returning home from the evacuation center, where they stayed from June to November.

“I am so grateful to DSWD, to those who helped us, to those who gave us rations and food (when we were in evacuation center). Thank you so much,” Nebreja said. (PNA)


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