THE Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) have assisted more locally stranded individuals (LSIs) in Metro Manila through its Hatid Tulong Grand Send-Off on July 25 to 29.
Along with other national agencies, the send-off of the second batch of LSIs was at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.
Hatid Tulong is a transport assistance initiative by different national government agencies to help LSIs as they return to their respective provinces. It uses a whole-of-government approach to address the different needs of the LSIs who have been affected by the community quarantine measures imposed amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
During the activity, DSWD provided financial assistance amounting to P2,000 to the LSIs under the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS).
For those carrying children, the department extended additional assistance worth P1,000 per accompanying child.
A total of P12,137,200 worth of cash aid was provided by DSWD to a total of 5,039 LSIs during the second batch of the Hatid Tulong. This is composed of 1,268 LSIs bound to Caraga who were served on July 25; 1,417 LSIs going to the Cordillera Administrative Region and Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Bicol, Western Visayas and Eastern Visayas on July 26; and 676 LSIs bound to Western Visayas and Eastern Visayas (except Bohol) on July 27.
The department also assisted another batch of LSIs, numbering to 687, bound to Caraga on July 28, and 991 LSIs going to Zamboanga City on July 29.
Upon arriving at their respective provinces, the LSIs were provided with hot meals and family food packs and other needed assistance and interventions by DSWD field offices in the regions.
DSWD also provided sleeping kits and hygiene kits to other LSIs who are temporarily sheltered in Taguig City, City of Manila, and Bulacan while waiting for the schedule of their send off to their respective provinces.
Hatid Tulong, which is being led by the Presidential Management Staff, has been implemented in compliance with the health protocols and guidelines to control the spread of Covid-19. All LSIs underwent rapid testing for Covid-19 supervised by the Department of Health.
Proper coordination with the local government units (LGUs) has also been made to enable them to make the necessary preparations for the return of the LSIs and implement screening and quarantine measures to protect their citizens from the virus.
To date, DSWD has provided P25,540,200 worth of assistance to a total of 10,361 LSIs during the first and second batches of the government's Hatid Tulong initiative. The department will continue to assist LSIs to help provide for their basic needs and ensure their safe return to their provinces and families.