Opav’s caravan of services benefits 100K individuals

Opav’s caravan of services benefits 100K individuals
SunStar Local News GPX

THE Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (Opav) announced it has assisted 100,000 beneficiaries in the Visayas through its caravan of services this year.

The attached agency of the Office of the President targets to increase the number of agencies participating next year.

During its yearend briefing with the media on Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2023, Opav said one of the key programs this year is the Bangon Bayan Muli Caravan, an initiative that brings government services closer to the public, especially to those who are unable to travel and access government services.

This program, though, will be renamed Bagong Pilipinas Serbisyo Fair starting next year.

Opav spokesperson Kaye Almeida–Yap, a lawyer, said the office plans to increase the number of caravans next year and increase the number of government agencies participating and providing services to the public.

The Opav said it has assisted around 100,000 beneficiaries in the Visayas region, of which around 40,000 to 50,000 beneficiaries were in the Province of Cebu.

“We hope to make it (a) regular (occurrence),” said Yap, referring to the frequency of the caravans throughout the year.

For 2023, the Opav has conducted nine caravans, which it aims to grow to 14 in 2024 or at least one caravan for each province in the Visayas region. The caravans for the upcoming year will be scheduled to take place over two days, deviating from the usual one-day duration.

It has partnered with at least 10 government agencies, namely the Philippine Statistics Authority, Department of Labor and Employment, Philippine Health Insurance Corp., Technical Education And Skills Development Authority, Department of Migrant Workers, National Telecommunications Commission, Social Security System, Department of Information and Communications Technology, Department of Social Welfare and Development and Integrated Bar of the Philippines.

For next year, Opav wants to attract more entities, including from the private sector.

Opav’s media head Jerome Calatrava said the public has clamored for the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to participate in the caravan for easy access to license renewal and other LTO services.

Calatrava mentioned that the primary challenge for additional participation from other government agencies, such as LTO, is the infrastructure and internet connectivity required for accessing the national database. However, he said Opav is currently in discussions with LTO regarding its potential involvement.

The agency is also eyeing to get the Department of Foreign Affairs on board for “Passport on Wheels,” but Yap added that the concern of the office is the required documentation of those who will avail themselves of it.

For next year, Opav plans to bring the caravan to the south of Cebu with Carcar City as the starting point because of its strategic location.

The Opav said the process of choosing a location for the caravan involves how open and willing the local government unit in the area is, as well as the location and logistics.

“We have to ensure there is a good area to accommodate not only our partner agencies but also the people availing of the services,” said Yap.


No stories found.

Just in

No stories found.

Branded Content

No stories found.
SunStar Publishing Inc.