THE police and City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWD) of Cagayan de Oro rescued on Friday, May 5, about 130 families and 90 children who made the streets and areas under the bridges their home.
The CSWD recorded 87 Badjao families from Zamboanga, 23 families from Iligan, three families from Sulu, one family from Surigao, 16 informal settler families in Cagayan de Oro, and 90 street children roaming around the city.
The City Government ferried the families back to their respective provinces, while the children were brought to Mother Theresa Foundation and Tahanan ng Kabataan.
Assistant City Social Welfare Officer Nida Paña said the reports and complaints from village officials about the presence of street families and children prompted them to immediately address the problem.
"Nakadawat mi og reports nga daghan sila (Badjao) dara sa under bridge sa JR Borja. By truck daw sila gapangabot, magabii ila tapok dayon by 4 a.m. sila ga-disperse, hinay-hinay sila'g adto sa ilang designated areas," Paña said.
Paña said the CSWD has been constantly monitoring the prevalence of these families and individuals.
Through this regular activity, Paña said this kind of social issue will be solved gradually.
"Ang function sa CSWD is to prevent the abuses of children in the streets, kay naa man pod gyod mga irresponsible nga mga parents," Paña said.
"Ang uban diha sa dalan og dili ka muhatag, garasan imong sakyanan. Naay uban dili mudawat og piso, dayon og abri imong bintana, luwaan pa jud ka. That's not a good attitude," Paña added.
Paña emphasized that the CSWD has programs aimed to uplift the condition of these individuals.
Paña said their office continues to assess the suitable livelihood programs for these families by conducting seminars and livelihood trainings.
Chief Inspector Mardy Hortillosa II, spokesperson of the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office, said they are coordinating with the City Government to initiate the rescue operation.
Hortillosa said through this activity, minors involved in crimes and illegal activities will be minimized, if not totally eradicated.
"Tungod kay naay mga kaso nga involved ang mga minors nga naa diha sa kadalanan, nagpahigayon kita ani nga rescue operation," Hortillosa said. (With Rejiann Ammor Maygay, Liceo de Cagayan University intern)