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Businesses pledge support for gov’t livelihood program

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Social Welfare (DSWD) said the business sector has pledged to provide employment for beneficiaries of its Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

DSWD Secretary Corazon “Dinky” Juliano Soliman said the successful coordination of the DSWD along with other government agencies, and with the private sector, is enabling the department – through its Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) to generate more employment opportunities for beneficiaries of its conditional cash transfer program.

“We have successfully instituted a convergence within the DSWD of the Pantawid Pamilya, our SLP and community driven development (program),” Soliman said.

This convergence, she said, had also brought in other national government agencies such as the Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Tourism, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Labor and Employment.

Soliman said large corporations such as the Ayala Corp. and SM Investment Corp. (SMIC) have joined the convergence find employment and livelihood activities for Pantawid Pamilya beneficiary-households.

“Private foundations and corporations themselves are with us in our effort to give livelihood and employment to our Pantawid beneficiaries,” Soliman said. “We already have more than 300 (private corporations and MSMEs).”

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Established in 2011, SLP designs its projects to yield long-term results for all actively participating stakeholders, and maintain consistency in the efforts of communities and partner establishments.

SLP, however, prioritizes participants that are underprivileged, which are legitimately identified by the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR).

Through the Community-Driven Enterprise Development (CDED) approach, SLP’s participants are trained to contribute to production and labor markets by utilizing available resources and accessible markets. Once trained, the members are given the option to take either a Micro-Enterprise Development Track or an Employment Facilitation Track.

Both programs also provide social preparedness, furthered skills training, and ultimately, sustainable sources of income.

“The income-generating programs inside SLP are designed to create products that consumers have a natural or constant demand for. We also make sure that the communities made inside SLP are independent enough and the corporate social integration programs are holistic and impactful,” said DSWD-SLP Program Manger Georgina Ann Hernandez.

Hernandez said these programs wouldn’t be holistic without partnering with different institutions. “That’s why we tap other institutions to help us make integrated training programs from a different point of view. This can help enhance the skills of the communities, to expand their opportunities, and to teach them trust their own capabilities.”

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