DSWD on Ensuring Accountability and Efficiency (Part 2)-A A +A
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
By Nerizza Faye G. Villanueva
LAST week's issue has introduced Administrative Order 16 Series of 2012 (AO16 s. 2012) of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). AO16 s. 2012 provides the rules and regulations on the registration and licensing of Social Welfare and Development Agencies and accreditation of Social Welfare and Development Programs and Services. We have already shared the legal bases and purpose of AO16 s. 2012.
On this issue, the general policies of AO 16 s. 2012 will be discussed.
All private Social Welfare and Development Agencies (SWDAs) operating without a registration/ license will be given a period of one (1) year to apply for registration and license to operate. Non-compliance to this will be reported to Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) and/or other regulatory government agencies for appropriate action.
Registration is applicable to Auxiliary SWDA that intends to or currently engages in social welfare and development activities.
Registration and license will cover private Social Welfare Agencies (SWAs) including Resource Agencies providing direct services to their beneficiaries. Accreditation will cover all licensed SWAs and Resource Agencies providing direct services, DSWD, local government units (LGUs) and other national government agencies (NGAs) implementing social welfare and development programs and services.
However, LGU community based and residential care services, DSWD community based and residential care services and NGAs and Government Owned and Controlled Corporations, Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) services like Day Care are only subjected to accreditation and are exempted from registration and licensing.
Application and issuance of registration, license and accreditation begins with the orientation to be conducted by the DSWD- Field Office.
The Standards Bureau of the DSWD will be responsible for the accreditation of Social Welfare and Development (SWD) programs and services of registered and licensed SWAs. The FOs will be responsible of the accreditation of the ECCD programs and services and SWD programs and services. Accreditation is conducted per facility/ center per implementation of community based programs and services and per area/s of coverage. Accreditation assessment of all programs and services shall be assessed within the three (3) years validity period.
Registration, license and accreditation will be issued by the Standards Bureau or the respective Field Offices.
Requirements for application includes accomplished application form, certified true copy of Certificate of Registration and Articles of Incorporation and by-laws indicating that the SWDA’s primary purpose is within the purview of social welfare and development issued by the SEC or Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), updated certification from SEC or CDA on the SWDAs status of operation, profile of governing board and employees, work and financial plan, manual of operation/ handbook. For those who have already been operating, annual accomplishment report, audited financial report, and profile of clients/ beneficiaries for the previous year will also be required.
For those operating in more than one region, they are also asked to submit validation assessment report from the DSWD-FO, Local Government Unit or Area Based Network (ABSNET) Regional/ Cluster. SWAs certificate of hiring of residential and community based staff and Certificate of Employment or Appointment of hired staff will also be considered. Additional requirements may be asked depending on kind of services provided. These requirements are used to ensure the accountability of the SWDAs or organizations in providing service to the people.
Fees and charges are applicable depending on the process applied for.
Once, assessed eligible, the SWDAs are issued certificates. These certificates are non-transferrable and should be displayed in any conspicuous place within the SWDA’s office or facility at all times.
Registered, accredited, and licensed agencies are privileged to be included in the DSWD’s registry of SWDAs that are qualified to avail of technical assistance from the DSWD and to attend or participate in DSWD’s capability building and skills enhancement activities as part of the Philippine delegation. These SWDAs are also endorsed for duty free entry of foreign donations subject to compliance with requirements for availment of foreign donations. They are also given financial subsidy or resource augmentation for program implementation subject to availability of funds and compliance to requirements. SWDAs are also given discounts on electric consumption, and other service utilities subject to compliance with the DSWD and other requirements.
Proposals of these SWDAs are also endorsed subject to DSWD’s and donor’s requirements. Moreover, they are recognized as a model SWDA and are provided recognition and monetary incentive subject to the availability to fund.
The implementation of this AO is strictly monitored by the Standards Bureau of the DSWD or the Standards Unit of the Field Office not only to ensure the quality of social services being provided but to safeguard SWDAs from corruption and dishonesty. The AO does not only serve as a set of guidelines but this is one mechanism that can protect the people from inefficient and opaque service.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on September 18, 2013.