Cebu Gov. Hilario P. Davide III and Vice Gov. Agnes A. Magpale led the groundbreaking of a P10-million facility intended for children in conflict with the law (CICL) in a Province-owned lot in Barangay Inayagan, City of Naga on Thursday, Feb. 21.
This two-storey facility, which is expected to be completed within 157 calendar days, is a 24-hour child-caring institution that will be managed by the Capitol, through the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO), in partnership with the Juvenile Justice Welfare Council (JJWC).
Magpale, who co-chairs the Provincial Women’s Commission and the Provincial Council for the Welfare of Children, said that the construction of the Bahay Pag-asa is a dream come true for all the advocates of children’s rights.
“Kani alang kanamo sa Provincial Council for the Welfare of Children mao ang katuparan sa among damgo nga ang mga kabataan makasala man, wala may sala, biktima man atimanon gayud sa Lalawigan sa Sugbo,” said Magpale.
The vice governor said that the project in Naga will serve as the second facility for CICLs, as the first one is located in the northern town of Consolacion, which is called My Home.
The Justice Peace and Integrity of Creation-Integrated Development Center Inc. turned over the management of My Home to the Cebu Provincial Government in 2013, Magpale said.
While My Home houses CICLs between the ages of 10 to below 15, the Bahay Pag-asa, on the other hand, will accommodate those between the ages of 15 to below 18.
Davide, in his speech, said that the Province of Cebu has dedicated as one of its priority programs the protection and welfare of children.
“Atong gituman ang atong mga saad subay sa Six-Key Development Agenda,” the governor said.
PSWDO Chief Marivic Garces said that the construction of the Bahay Pag-asa was conceptualized in 2016, and finally a groundbreaking has been made to pave the way for the full construction of the Phase 1 of the project.
She said that the Province has allocated a budget of P10 million for the Phase 1, while the JJWC also pledged P10 million to help for the completion of the project’s second and third phases.
Yes Construction won the bidding for the project’s phase one, which will be constructed inside a 2,000-square-meter compound.
In October 2018, the Cebu Provincial Government and the Department of Public Works and Highways 2nd Engineering District, which is the implementing agency, signed a memorandum of agreement for the implementation of the project by contract.
The groundbreaking ceremony was witnessed by various government and non-government organizations as well as the local officials of Inayagan.
Among those who attended were lawyer Joan Saniel of the Children’s Legal Bureau Inc., Prosecutor Joel Balacuit of the Public Attorney’s Office, Provincial Director Jerome Gonzalez of the Department of Interior and Local Government-Cebu, Asst. Regional Director Shalaine Lucero of the Department of Social Welfare and Development 7, Engr. Leonard Abao of the DPWH 2nd Engineering District-Talisay, Barangay Captain Edelberto Fat of Inayagan, James Canoy of the Provincial Youth Commission, Cebu Provincial Sports Commission Executive Director Ramil Abing and representatives from the Philippine National Police.