Cash transfer program for IPs in place

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Monday, August 25, 2014


FOUR years after the implementation of the conditional cash transfer, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), the Department of Social Welfare and Development has finally designed a program for the indigenous peoples.

The Conditional Cash Transfer–Indigenous Peoples (CCT-IP) program will be targeting a total of 116,000 IP households for its first national implementation.

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Sheryll Fernandez, Information Officer for 4Ps of DSWD-Davao, said the CCT-IP program was established last June.

The program was made after the recently concluded Participatory Review of the Experiences of IP under the Conditional Cash Transfer program.

The review showed that the program failed to make adjustments in its operations to harmonize with the socio-cultural-political and geographic setting of IP communities.

According to the CCT-IP program, the beneficiaries will be those who are in vulnerable and disadvantaged areas as identified during social preparations, IP families with 0-18 year old children and/or those beyond 18 years old currently enrolled in Elementary, High School, Alternative Learning System, School of Living Tradition and other indigenous learning systems, IPs living within or outside their ancestral domain and those who are in the geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDA).

"Ang target for implementation kay September pero dili pa jud siya as in ma-fully operational kay bag-o paman gud kaayo (The target for implementation is September but it cannot still be fully operational because it is still very new)," Fernandez said.

Fernandez said 40n percent of IPs is participating in the 4Ps program.

Sun.Star Davao in September 2011 had come up with an
in-depth report about the difficulties the 4Ps program had imposed on IPs, specifically because its implementation did not consider the geographical location and absence of health centers in sitios.

Follow-up reports also showed that 4Ps beneficiaries from North Cotabato had to go all the way to Davao City because they do not have a Land Bank branch near their towns.

As a result, many IPs ended up having debts they did not have a need for before the 4Ps was implemented.

Among others, mothers and children had to travel long distances and incur transport expenses that eat up most of the cash they get from the program.

Also, the release of cash assistance is always held along the highway, requiring pregnant and mothers who have just given birth to walk for several hours bringing their newborns with them.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on August 26, 2014.

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