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DSWD’s call for unity in addressing poverty

By Rhaydz B. Barcia

AS the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) commemorates its 73rd Anniversary, Bicol director Norman Laurio calls upon government agencies, LGUs, and stakeholders to collaborate in serving the impoverished and addressing poverty in the countryside.

Laurio urges local government units, national government agencies, and other stakeholders to join hands with the angels in red vests, experiencing the way of life in impoverished families in far-flung areas. He emphasizes the need for collective efforts to truly understand and address poverty.

Highlighting Bicol as the 6th poorest region in the country, with 541,137 identified poor households, Laurio expresses confidence that collaboration with various entities is essential for effective social service. He emphasizes the daily commitment of DSWD to support families in crisis, victims of abuses, and vulnerable Bicolanos.

Acknowledging outstanding performances, Laurio praises DSWD employees as “angels in red vests.” He appreciates the exemplary work of HRMDD, AICS, and SocPen, which received national awards during the recent PRAISE AWARDA in Manila.

Laurio underscores the purpose of DSWD’s existence — to help fellowmen in need. He emphasizes the urgency of working together to uplift lives from poverty, acknowledging the challenges posed by recent typhoons and the government’s focus on reducing poverty incidence.

The DSWD official mentions the Marcos administration’s measures, including the “Walang Gutom 2027” food stamp program, removal of pass-through fees, and cash aid distribution through the Rice Farmers Financial Assistance program.

To combat hunger and poverty, the DSWD introduces the Food Stamp Program, providing meal augmentation worth P3,000 monthly to around one million families facing food poverty. The program is in its pilot run, with plans for scale-up in mid-2024, targeting regions like Bicol, Cagayan Valley, Caraga, and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region.


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