The Cebu Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) continues to empower women in each municipality so that they can participate and avail of the Bugasan sa Kababayen-an Project.
Social Welfare Officer IV Marirose D. Lopez who is handling the program since 2010 said that recipients of the program are the registered associations or organizations at the barangay and in the municipality levels, which are capacitated through leadership.
These associations must be registered either with the Department Of Labor and Employment, Securities and Exchange Commission , Department of Social Worker and Development Region 7 or Kalipunan ng Liping Pilipina Inc. National and must be accredited with their respective local government unit (LGU).
Under the program, the Cebu Provincial Government, through the PSWDO, will provide the rice from NFA and will be distributed to the barangays.
“Instead of giving them money, each qualified women’s association is provided with 10 sacks of NFA rice as capital to start this small-scale enterprise”, said Lopez.
As soon as the project earns profit and becomes stable, the members can opt to sell other products aside from rice.
Out of their profit, they have the option to sell NFA rice or the commercial rice in their respective towns.
The project aims to provide livelihood of women in the province and to improve their economic status. One of the PSWDO’s targets is that these accredited associations can put up a store to make it a cooperative.
At present, there are 35 LGUs who implemented Bugasan sa Kababayen-an Project.
To date, these registered associations with best practices are enjoying patronage refunds at the end of the year through their savings.
Among those towns with best practices are Carcar City, Sibonga and Carmen.
Carcar City started the project in 2010 with 15 barangays. In two years, the LGU earned Php 421,261.28, based from the PSWDO status of the project.
Seeing that the project has been doing well, Carcar City Mayor Nicepuro Apura supported the program by providing the beneficiaries means to put up a store to make it a cooperative.
The PSWDO record shows that town of Carmen, which has 21 barangays, had a net profit of Php 473,665.45 as of May this year.
As of June 2014, Sibonga town with 25 barangays had a net profit of Php 307,644.42.
The project was first launched in 2010 in fifteen towns, which includes Catmon, Dalaguete, Alcoy, Boljoon, Tuburan, Carcar, Dumanjug, Moalboal, Alegria, Barili, Tabuelan, Sibonga, Borbon, Alcantara & San Remigio.
Among the acccomplishments of the PSWDO include conducting Leadership and Basic Skills Management Development Training to all 51 cities/ municipalities, completing the profiles of women associations in 42 cities andmunicipalities, standardizing the Provincial Policy of the program, completing the Financial Management Training for all the women officers in cities and municipalities, regular monitoring and submission of reports, and approval and signing of the Cebu Provincial Women’s Federation Association constitution and by-laws. Ana Liza L. Abao, SWU MassCom Intern