Baguio to pilot LGU-initiated conditional cash transfer-A A +A
By JM Agreda
Sunday, May 13, 2012
SOME 40 residents in Baguio City have been benefitting from a conditional cash transfer (CCT) program initiated by the local government, said Department of Social Welfare and Development Secretary Corazon Soliman.
She said it is within the ideals of the country’s conditional cash transfer program to institutionalize the CCT for local governments.
But Soliman said this initiative is still not the goal of the country’s Pantawid Pamilya program claiming to cover the country’s poor households based on the National Household Targeting System (NHTS) by the end of the Aquino administration.
She said once the CCT program becomes institutionalized in local governments, a more stringent monitoring will be implemented to see to it that beneficiaries chosen are poor families and are deserving of cash grants will be implemented.
“This should always be a politically blind program,” she said.
With 585,000 households graduating from the program next year, Soliman said the agency is preparing them to become self-sufficient by equipping them with livelihood skills to sustain the family’s rise from poverty.
By the end of the year, with the expansion of the Pantawid Pamilya program, some 3.8 million families out of the listed 5.2 million poor families will be benefitting from the cash grants that lead to improved education and health services, she said.
City Social Welfare and Development Officer Betty Fangasan said the 40 families covered by the city-led CCT reside in San Luis Village and are in addition to Baguio’s 1,033 CCT beneficiaries.
She said these families were chosen based on NHTS data and from those who enlisted themselves as poor and were evaluated by the agency.
“They were chosen as beneficiaries because they lie as part of that small margin of poor families not covered by the national program,” she said.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on May 14, 2012.