iNews Philippines –
Private manpower agency, DSWD, DOLE sets partnership for 4Ps beneficiary employment

A manpower agency recently signed a memorandum of understanding with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to provide jobs for self-sufficient beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

Starboard Manpower Services Inc. chief operating officer Manuel Gorobat, Jr. said he is looking forward to hiring at least 100 4Ps graduates per month.

“The project will open opportunities for many who are less fortunate. By giving them employment, they uplift the quality of their lives and become good providers for their families,” Gorobat said in an interview at the sidelines of the ceremony in Intramuros, Manila.

Starboard Inc. will conduct free training programs to qualified 4Ps beneficiaries to equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge in performing their jobs.

The manpower agency will also assist and endorse qualified trainees to their partner-employers for possible employment locally and abroad.

Under the memorandum, the DSWD will certify 4Ps beneficiaries qualified for the training and employment.

The department has identified 385,000 self-sufficient beneficiaries who are qualified for the program.

Getting out of poverty

The DSWD partners with various organizations to ensure that appropriate assistance is given to 4Ps beneficiaries towards improving their well-being thus enabling them to eventually transition out of poverty.

DSWD Secretary Rolando Bautista said the program is only one of the whole-of-government-approach of convergence and complementation services to achieve Ambisyon Natin 2040’s goal of a “matatag, maginhawa, at panatag na buhay” (strongly rooted, comfortable, and secure life) for every Filipino.

“This partnership is a realization sa patunay ng malasakit, sa mahihirap (genuine care for the poor) seeking employment and DSWD is looking forward to cooperate with DOLE to pursue this,” he added.

DOLE will provide technical assistance to DSWD and Starboard Inc. regarding employment facilitation through the convergence of programs and services that focus on the enhancement of operational efficiency and strengthening of inter-agency partnership.

Social Welfare and Development Undersecretary Aimee Torrefranca Neri said these efforts are a result of the 4Ps Law or Republic Act 11310 that stated the seven-year maximum period for beneficiaries to stay in the poverty reduction program.

“We have to prepare them before they exit. So, when they exit from the program, [they are already] financially independent because the children in the family are already employed to jobs that are secured,” she added.

The new law states that the national poverty reduction strategy and human capital program provides conditional cash transfer program to poor households for a maximum period of seven years to improve the health, education, and nutrition aspect of their lives.

The National Advisory Council (NAC) may recommend a longer period under exceptional circumstances.

During the ceremony, 11 beneficiaries who passed the initial screening of Starboard Inc. expressed their gratitude to the government for the job assistance.

They are also the batch that will pilot-test the program before it will be implemented nationwide.

Ivan Royette Montilla, 19, among the beneficiaries from Batasan Hills in Quezon City, said he previously only worked for a part-time job as a dining staff with no promise of regularization.

“I already passed as a full-time employee in VICMA Marketing through Starboard complete with Philhealth, SSS, and PAG-IBIG benefits. I can now provide for my family and especially for my siblings,” Montilla said, adding that this employment will help him save up so he can get a degree in culinary arts and hopefully work abroad.

“There’s a bigger chance now that I can study culinary and work abroad in the future. I can support my family better by then. My gratitude goes to all the efforts of the government to help us,” he said. (Christine Cudis, PNA)

Covid-19 slows down OFW deployment to HK, Macao, Taiwan

The coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) threat has affected the deployment of overseas Filipino workers, particularly new hires, to Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said on February 24, 2020.

“Bumaba ‘yung mga bago (There are less newly-hired OFWs). (I think) they are also taking necessary precautions especially that they also got financial assistance,” Bello said in an interview.

Bello said some of them are still monitoring developments in the areas hit by the disease.

“They are taking their time to find out any developments. I think it is also because some of them still have enough funds. Some employers in Hong Kong were kind enough to give extended leave (to their employees),” he added.

The Philippine government earlier imposed a travel ban on Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao due to the Covid-19 outbreak. However, the travel ban to Taiwan was lifted on February 14 while only OFWs are allowed to travel to the two Chinese territories effective February 18.

The government earlier has provided more than PHP80 million in cash assistance to OFWs affected by the travel ban to the three areas.

However, OFWs bound for Hong Kong and Macao are required to sign a document indicating their awareness of the Covid-19 threat.

They are also directed to comply with the medical and health protocol in the Philippines and the country/territory where they are staying in. (PNA)

PH gov’t gives P80-M cash aid to OFWs affected by travel ban

The government has provided over PHP80 million worth of financial assistance to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who were stranded due to the travel ban imposed on China, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) outbreak.

“Statistics for BAP (Beneficiaries Availment Program) NCOV (Novel Coronavirus) Relief, as of February 19, 2020, 16:11 pm, Total Released: 8,060. Total Amount Released: PHP80,600,000,” Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said in a Twitter post on Wednesday.

At the same time, Cacdac announced that they have stopped providing PHP10,000 cash assistance to OFWs from Taiwan.

Cacdac, meanwhile, said they will only accept cash benefit applications from affected OFWs in Macao and Hong Kong until Wednesday.

“Simula po bukas ay hindi na tayo tatanggap ng applications mula sa mga (Starting tomorrow (Thursday), we will no longer accept applications from) HK & Macao OFWs,” he said.

The government has lifted the travel ban to Taiwan on February 14. Meanwhile, only OFWs are allowed to travel to the two Chinese special administrative regions (SARs) after the ban was lifted on Tuesday.

The Interagency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease recommended the lifting of the ban to Hong Kong and Macao following several requests made by OFWs concerned that they may lose their jobs if they fail to resume work after their vacation leave.

OFWs bound for the two Chinese territories will first be required to prepare a “written declaration” stating that they are aware of the risk associated with the disease.

The temporary travel ban was imposed due to Covid-19 cases recorded in these areas. (Ferdinand Patinio, PNA)

PH hits 8.26-million  foreign arrivals in 2019

International visitors to the Philippines in 2019 reached 8.26 million, a 15.24 percent growth over 2018’s 7.16 million arrivals.

Almost all months, except January, registered double-digit growth rates, the largest of which was August at 27.54 percent while December recorded the highest volume at 776,798.

“This heralds a new milestone in the country’s tourism history, breaching the eight millionth mark. Without a doubt, our convergence programs with other government agencies, particularly in improving access as well as product development and marketing initiatives with local government and private sectors have greatly paid off. These gains we hope to sustain even as we face global challenges,” Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said.

The DOT launched in 2019 its refreshed branding campaign, continuing the “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” slogan but repurposing it to advocate for sustainable tourism. The local launch was held at the National Museum of Natural History while the international event was in Berlin during the Internationale Tourismus-Börse.

To complement the new direction towards sustainable tourism, the DOT launched a movement called “Save Our Spots” to call for each individual to be a responsible tourist and encouraging the same behavior towards others to preserve the country’s natural and man-made wonders.

The Philippine tourism industry also received a number of international awards and recognitions in 2019 such as the World’s Leading Dive Destination at the 2019 World Travel Awards, Asia’s Leading Tourism Board at the 2019 World Travel Awards and Excellent Partner Award (for Sustainable Efforts in Boracay, among others).

“This is a high point for Philippine tourism as it depicts our solidarity and commitment to make tourism work and prove its full potential as a sustainable and inclusive economic activity. The record-breaking numbers solidify the effectiveness of the Tourism Act of 2009, which celebrated its 10-year anniversary in 2019,” Puyat said.

Korea remains the top source market with a total of 1.98 million arrivals, for a 22.48 percent increase. The ace spot has been well-guarded since 2010.

China follows closely on second with 1.74 million, boasting of a 38.58 percent growth; the US on third with 1.06 million visitors for a 2.90 percent increase.

Japan is fourth at 682,788 arrivals, with an 8.07 percent growth followed by Taiwan reporting an equally impressive double-digit increase of 35.01 percent for its 327,273 arrivals.

Rounding up the top 12 visitor markets with their volumes and respective growth rates are Australia with 286,170 (2.27 percent), Canada with 238,850 ((5.48 percent), the United Kingdom with 209,206 (4.06 percent), Singapore with 158,595 arrivals (-7.68 percent), Malaysia with 139,882 (-3.69 percent), India with 134,963 (11.43 percent) and Germany with 103,756 (12.66 percent).

New law prioritizes assistance, reintegration of OFWs

Filipinos working overseas have been dubbed as the country’s modern-day heroes.

The remittances that they give to families back home fuel household spending that help power the Philippine economy.

Former Angkla Representative Jesulito Manalo, among the authors of a bill calling for the creation of the Office for Social Welfare Attaché to assist overseas Filipinos (OFs), in a speech on Wednesday during the ceremonial signing of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the newly enacted Social Welfare Attache Act or RA 11299, said the new measure is “a milestone” for OFWs.

“OFWs, especially those who are distressed will feel that they can depend on the government,” he said.

Manalo added that huge remittances sent by overseas Filipinos put emphasis on the “unique trait” of Filipinos among other citizens who stay abroad.

“Migration laws of other countries attract/lure people [foreigners], so they work and spend their earning there to build that country’s economy. That’s why America grew because of migration. The uniqueness of our country is our people work there but send their money here,” he said.

In a Philippine Statistics Authority data released in April 2019, the total remittance sent by Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) in the period of April to September 2017 was estimated at PHP205.2 billion.

These remittances included cash sent home (PHP146.8 billion), cash brought home (PHP48.3 billion) and remittances in kind (PHP10.1 billion).

In 2017, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) recorded USD28 billion or around PHP1.46 trillion in cash remittances from OFWs.

These remittances constituted more than 10 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, according to the BSP report.

Manalo added that while overseas Filipinos play important roles in building the country’s economy, they also face various risks due to the distance and isolation, and through this law, the government ensures the protection of their rights.

“We have to care for the people that remit close to 30 billion dollars because if these people will no longer remit, we will not have the money to create jobs and get the money going here,” he added.


President Rodrigo Duterte signed RA 11299 in April 17, 2019.

It highlights the establishment of the Office of the Social Welfare Attaché (OSWA), which will be managed by Social Welfare Attachés (SWAtts) and will serve as the arm of DSWD, through its Home Office and Foreign Posts, in protecting the rights and promoting the welfare of OFs and their families, especially those in distress.

“The social welfare of our workers abroad is now a necessity. It is an important factor, because eventually, these workers will come back and who will prepare them socially and mentally and reintegrate them back to society, they must be ready to pick up the data and information,” Manalo added.

The law requires that the social welfare attache shall also establish and maintain a data bank and documentation of OFWs and their families so that appropriate services can be effectively provided; give information about the DSWD and its attached agencies and services; and perform other related function in the delivery of social services as may be directed by the head of the diplomatic post in the area of assignment.

DSWD Secretary Rolando Bautista, during the ceremony, said they are planning to put five more SWAtts to countries with huge number of Filipinos this year.

By 2020, the Department will recommend having 18 SWAtts.

Additional attachés

Currently, the DSWD has seven SWAtts in the following embassies and countries: Philippine Embassy in Riyadh, and Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Philippine Embassy in Kuwait; Philippine Embassy in Malaysia; Philippine Consulate General in Dubai, United Arab Emirates; Philippine Embassy in Qatar; and Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong.

He said that in coordination with the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), the DSWD is eyeing to establish additional SWAtts in other Middle Eastern countries and South Korea.

They are also planning to send their people to “some parts of Europe.”

“We have to confirm this because the discussion is ongoing and it depends on the DFA,” Bautista added.

Under this year’s General Appropriations Act, they have allocated some PHP90 million for the establishment of OSWA.

The Social Welfare Attaché shall possess the minimum qualifications set by the Civil Service Commission (CSC) and the preferred qualifications prescribed by the DSWD.

The Social Welfare Attache shall perform the following functions and duties at the overseas post:

1) manage cases of OFWs and other overseas Filipinos in distress needing psychological services, such as victims of trafficking or illegal recruitment, rape or sexual abuse, maltreatment and other forms of physical or mental abuse, and cases of abandoned or neglected children;

2) undertake surveys and prepare official social welfare situationers on the OFWs in the area of assignment;

3) establish a network with overseas-based social welfare agencies and/or individuals and groups which may be mobilized to assist in the provision of appropriate social services;

4) respond to and monitor the resolution of problems and complaints or queries of OFWs and their families;

5) submit regular reports to the DSWD and DFA home office on plans and activities undertaken, recommendations, and updates on the situation of OFWs particularly those encountering difficulties in the host country. Said report shall form part of the semi-annual report to Congress as provided under Section 33 of RA 8042, as amended. (Christine Cudis, PNA)

Iloilo’s Pintados Festival to push through despite Coronavirus scare

Pintados de Passi Festival is slated in the third week of March and will push through despite the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) scare, the mayor of Passi City confirmed on February 14, 2020.

Mayor Stephen Palmares said the festival will push through upon the decision of local officials during a consultation meeting.

“I also consulted doctors and we came up with the decision that we will push through with the Pintados (Festival). I heard that some festivities in February were postponed but Pintados will be on the later part of March already,” Palmares said.

The mayor also considered the possibility that the postponement of the festival due to the virus might create panic among Passinhons.

He said he joined local officials to conduct an on the ground inspection around the city and saw no reason to postpone the festival.

Palmares assured the locals that the city is safe from Covid-19 and precautionary measures are in place to prevent the spread of the virus.

The city and the Provincial Health Office have conducted last Feb. 7 an information dissemination on Covid-19 prevention.

The Pintados de Passi Festival gathers annually an estimated 100,000 revelers, the mayor said. The highlight for this year is scheduled for March 22.

“With the city health office, we will put up stations for people to disinfect (during the festivity),” Palmares said.

Started in 1998, Palmares said Pintados de Passi was never postponed due to any health concern in the past.

The festival features street-dancing performances known for its aggressive dance movements.

Palmares said eight tribes will perform this year and the public should also look forward to other activities like tattoo contest, car show, photo exhibit, among others. (Gail Momblan, PNA)

Top photo: ON WITH THE CELEBRATION. Photo shows street performers during the previous Pintados de Passi Festival. Passi City Mayor Stephen Palmares confirms on Friday (Feb. 14, 2020) that the annual celebration will push through in March despite the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) scare. (Photo courtesy of Ian Paul Cordero)

Opinion: The nation will survive without Kardo and Vice

NEITHER the impact of the cancellation of the Visiting Forces agreement nor the morbid threats of the nCoV were of any importance to ABS CBN from the moment Solicitor General Jose Calida filed a Quo Warranto with the Supreme Court last Monday. Suddenly there was a torrent of self-approbations from the network generously spiced with melodrama aiming at eliciting support and sympathy from the ghettos of Tondo who are hooked to the Probinsyano and those whose lunch is not complete without Vice Ganda and Ion. Of course, the moribund opposition and a hodgepodge of the anti-Duterte cabal are never far behind.

Despite its claim that it will continue to operate even if its franchise will not be renewed, a declaration so characteristic of its corporate hubris, the Network, however, has mobilized its workforce and talents to talk about its virtues and indispensability in the life of every Filipino. They have always been good at that, They swayed the impressionable electorates with necrological oratory to get Benigno Simeon Aquino III, a video game enthusiast, elected President.

That was to be the last of the emotional blackmail.

In the 2016 elections, a true probinsyano who is made of sterner stuff emerged from the boondocks of Mindanao. Rodrigo R. Duterte can neither be bought nor cowed. First to test his mettle upon assumption of office as President was PLDT/Smart Manny V. Pangilinan who audaciously declared that the City Mayor of Davao knows nothing about the telecom industry and therefore should leave it to who else but the duopoly. Starting from the government directive to return the CURE Telecom (a PLDT/SMART subsidiary) frequency MVP demanded P3-billion as ransom. Irked, Digong assured Pangilinan to expect Revenue examiners the following morning. Before daybreak, he advised DICT Acting Sec. Eliseo Rio that he will surrender the frequency at no cost.

Like Pangilinan, not a few in the list of Forbes Magazine’s rich, famous and influential belittled Duterte whom they thought is only good at playing cop and robbers. They are wrong. A lawyer who mastered the art of investigation and prosecution all he needs is a phalanx of economist and business gurus in his cabinet and some friends. PAL’s Lucio Tan settled his tax dues, the Inquirer ended a free ride in occupying government property without paying rentals, the Mighty Cigarette settled the billions it owed the government.

Duterte is happy with Filipino businessmen getting rich and richer, but he cannot countenance those bilking money from the people especially the poor. He neutralizes drug lords and members of the drug syndicates but he is wont to use the hammer and tongs to corporate firms that cheat on people and the government. The water concessionaires went to Singapore to refer their money claim against the government for the losses they claimed they incurred. The lawyer in Duterte prodded him to dig into this phantasmagoric paradox. The concessionaires are merely distributing water and they collect billions of pesos from consumers who have to queue up to the wee hours of the morning to have a share of the few drops of water that comes out of the tap. He also discovered that the concessionaires had been collecting money for ghost sewerage projects. Ayala offered P6-billion in settlements and to correct the onerous provisions of the water contract with MWSS.

But what of the Lopez conglomerate that owns the powerful media empire which had been perceived to be the country’s political kingmaker. In the words of Leni Robredo, “ang pinakamakapangyarihang” media establishment. For once she is correct. Duterte had his own personal issues that are half-forgotten. A country mouse when he ran for President, he was assailed by the Network using innocent children in a despicable and unethical political propaganda. With a little money that his friends were able to raise for a political ad the Network collected, as the policy was “pay-before-broadcast” but the advertisement was never aired. The President never filed a formal protest. He went on with his task to clean the bureaucracy of corruption alongside his promise to wage an all-out war against drugs. He has very simple demands from business: “Pay your taxes and debts to the government”.

Which brings the Lopez empire to the equation. A total of P1.667- billion-plus borrowed by four corporations under the conglomerate from the Development Bank of the Philippines were written off. Those who demand justice and freedom of media and self-proclaimed defenders of democracy knew this story. The media knew this too well.

Will Calida beg the court to look at these issues in addition to the alleged pay-per-view business which the Solgen contends is not authorized under the provisions of its franchise. The lawyers of ABS CBN moreover claimed that they had obtained clearance from the Justice Secretary. Only the Supreme Court can render a verdict as to whether the opinion of the DOJ can override the mandate of the NTC and prove Calida wrong.

On a personal note, I have long switched to Netflix for action-packed movies, comedies or tearjerkers. I didn’t know there are better Korean movies than the “Train to Pusan” and the plots are better than the easily-anticipated and banal storylines of our locally produced movies. For news, I watch CNN Philippines. Very balanced and not opinionated.

For now, the only reason why ABS CBN will be sorely missed is the Filipinos’ penchant for the invincible Kardo and the witticism of Vice Ganda. When you consider that 87% of Filipinos are satisfied with the other Probinsyano moreover, Kardo and Vice are two characters which the nation can live without. (Jun Ledesma, PNA)

Mr. Jun Ledesma is a community journalist who writes from Davao City and comments from the perspective of a Mindanaoan.

France opens expanded scholarship programs to Pinoys

The French Embassy in Manila announced on February 7, 2020, that it is expanding its scholarship program this year for Filipino professionals who would want to pursue their master’s degree and doctorate abroad.

In partnership with the Philippines’ Department of Science and Technology’s Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI), the PhilFrance-DOST Scholarship program targets Filipinos working in the academe, research, or government institutions to boost exchanges in scientific knowledge and expertise between Paris and Manila.

The French Embassy in Manila said the program would prioritize the following fields of study: agriculture, biological sciences, climate change, forestry, health and medical research, material sciences, natural resources and environment, nuclear application on health, and veterinary sciences.

Awardees of the scholarship will be entitled to a partial tuition subsidy, one round-trip ticket from Manila to France, an exemption from visa application fees, a monthly allowance, a health care package, and priority access to public student accommodations for the expected length of their academic programs.

The deadline for application is on March 16. Details and guidelines on eligibility, benefits, and requirements are available through the PhilFrance Scholarships Program website at

The embassy also urged Filipinos to apply for other PhilFrance Scholarships available to both Filipino students and professionals wishing to pursue their master’s degrees in France.

Since 2016, more than 50 Filipinos have been awarded the PhilFrance Scholarship, enabling them to pursue graduate degrees in the French language and literature, business, public policy and international development, engineering, mathematics, marine biology, applied chemistry, environmental and ecological sciences, and public health. (Joyce Ann L. Rocamora, PNA)

PH gov’t sets Clark Athletes’ Village as quarantine area for OFWs from China

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said on February 6, 2020, the Athletes’ Village in New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac will be the quarantine area for repatriated overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from Hubei province in China.

“The BCDA (Bases Conversion and Development Authority) offered the use of the new Clark City as a quarantine area for repatriated Filipinos. Procedures were set into place for the moment our kababayans board the plane up until their arrival at the Clark City,” Duque said in a press briefing at the Department of Health (DOH) central office in Manila.

Duque described the new quarantine site as “more strategically located” compared to Fort Magsaysay in Nueva Ecija which was the first choice for the whole quarantine process.

“And, the facilities are more complete, the ambiance is very nice, neat, it’s an open space and the rooms have individualized toilets. Unlike in Fort Magsaysay where the toilets, you would have to share,” he said.

Duque said the repatriated OFWs will be oriented about the quarantine process and will be asked to fill out health cards while on board.

Centralized processing of all immigration documents will also be done, he added.

“Upon alighting the plane, the Bureau of Quarantine (BoQ) shall screen the passengers, all OFWs with symptoms shall be immediately admitted as patients under investigation at identified ready hospitals while asymptomatic OFWs will be transferred to the quarantine facility,” Duque said.

The BoQ will also coordinate the disinfection of all the luggage and plane used while the Central Health Development Central Luzon will be in charge of disinfecting the vehicles used for transport.

“During the quarantine period, one room will be allotted per person to ensure patient safety and convenience. The room can also accommodate a family of three. The rooms have televisions, air conditioners, and refrigerators,” Duque said.

Since the OFWs will be provided packed meals and other needs, Duque said their movement shall be limited to the quarantine building only.

“The quarantine group will still have to come up with a list of do’s and don’ts, we’ll wait, and I don’t want to preempt their announcement. But certainly, there will be restrictions for control and ensuring that they will not be contagious…the end goal is that they don’t put other people at risk,” he added.

The DOH will be in charge of the management coordination and logistics of the entire quarantine process.

All DOH hospitals in the region will be in charge of the deployment of medical teams in the quarantine area.

“We will be providing the needed medical logistics including hygiene kits, disinfectant solutions, transportation, and other things that will be needed in the quarantine process,” Duque said.

Upon completion of the 14-day quarantine period, the discharge of the repatriated OFWs shall be facilitated by the Overseas Workers Welfare Authority in coordination with the Department of Foreign Affairs. (Ma. Teresa Montemayor, PNA)

DSWD launches Operations Center

Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rolando Joselito D. Bautista led the launching of the Agency’s newly-established Operations Center (OpCen) at the DSWD Central Office in Quezon City, as part of the Department’s 69th Founding Anniversary culminating activity on January 29, 2020.

The establishment of the OpCen, which is the first in the history of DSWD’s public service, is timely and an integral part in ensuring quick response from the Department. It provides real time information that will serve as the basis in carrying out services for disaster response, assistance to individuals in crisis situations, and provision of support to distressed deported/repatriated undocumented Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), among others.

Among the services and facilities that will be showcased in the OpCen include an operations hub that will serve as the monitoring room of all information systems; control server room where reports and data will be generated; communication room where personnel can monitor, collect, categorize, relay, and store information; reception area; personnel’s quarters; and a pantry.

The Department is certain that the new OpCen will greatly contribute to the achievement of the Department’s mandate and goals. It will also improve the delivery of social protection services to the Filipino people through state-of-the-art information technology infrastructure and facilities that will allow timely generation and access to data required in the planning, monitoring, and decision-making process of the Secretary and DSWD Executive Committee members.

DSWD continues to innovate to ensure that it is ready to respond to the challenges of the new decade and be able to provide prompt, genuine, and compassionate service to the people that it is mandated to serve.

(Top photo: Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rolando D. Bautista (2nd from foreground) and other officials are being briefed on how the new operations center (OpCen) of the Department works.)