GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 1 Dec) – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in Region 12 released on Monday P4.27-million worth of livelihood grants to various local government units (LGUs) in the region.
Ofelia Domingo, DOLE Region 12 director, said the grants were part of the region’s allocation under the agency’s flagship Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (DILEEP), Pantawid and the Grassroots Participatory Budgeting (GPB) approach.
She said around P3.45 million was released under the DILEEP for the distribution of livelihood starter kits to parents of child laborers in six LGUs within the region.
The recipients were Malapatan town in Sarangani with P1.505 million; Kidapawan City with P793,569; Barangay Apopong in this city with P383,040; Barangay Pukay Pait in Tantangan, South Cotabato with P370,000; Malungon town in Sarangani with P255,000; and Barangay Tibpuan in Lebak, Sultan Kudarat with P151,807.
“These grants are aimed to provide parents of child laborers with sustainable livelihood ventures to ensure that their children will stop working and remain in school instead,” Domingo said in a press conference.
The official said the starter kits are worth between P5,000 and P10,000, depending on the projects or ventures that were proposed by the beneficiaries.
Domingo said the livelihood kits are composed of essential equipment, raw materials and initial capitalization.
The approved grants include small ventures such as carinderia or eatery, meat processing, food retailing and welding shop, she said.
Prior to the approval of the grants, she said the beneficiaries underwent various skills and entrepreneurial trainings that were facilitated by the agency.
The DILEEP seeks to contribute to poverty reduction and reduce vulnerability to risks of the poor, vulnerable, and marginalized workers through emergency employment and promotion of entrepreneurship and community enterprises.
The program’s components are the Kabuhayan or livelihood program and emergency employment program, which is also dubbed Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers or TUPAD.
Domingo said they are currently processing the release of around P800,000 worth of grants under the DILEEP to selected beneficiaries in various parts of the region.
From January to November this year, the official said they already released around P46-million worth of grants under the DILEEP.
“We’re on track towards meeting our goal for this in terms of grant releases under the DILEEP,” she said.
Meantime, aside from the DILEEP grants, Domingo said Kidapawan City received an additional grant of P416,072 under the Pantawid program while the local government of Banga in South Cotabato received P400,000 under the GPB.
She added that these grants will be utilized for the implementation of livelihood projects earlier proposed by the recipient-LGUs.