GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/12 February) — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in Region 12 released around P12.89 million worth of livelihood grants on Thursday to various local government units (LGUs) as part of the continuing implementation of its flagship DOLE Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (DILEEP).
Ofelia Domingo, DOLE Region 12 director, said they released the grants to eight LGUs in the region and in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) that earlier signified to avail of the program.
She said the beneficiaries were the local governments of Isulan, Bagumbayan and Tacurong City in Sultan Kudarat; Barangay Bukay Pait in Tantangan and Norala in South Cotabato; Malapatan and Malungon in Sarangani; and Parang in Maguindanao.
Although a part of ARMM, Maguindanao was earlier placed under the agency’s coverage for the DILEEP’s implementation.
“The grants will be utilized for the distribution of livelihood packages to informal workers in these areas,” Domingo said.
The official said a total of 951 informal workers will specifically receive “Negosyo sa Kariton” or nego-karts, steel payao or fish aggregating devices and individual starter kits.
She said 806 of the recipients will come from the seven LGUs in Region 12 that received a combined grant of P7.124 million.
Domingo said each of them will receive starter kits for small business ventures worth P5,000 to P10,000.
In Parang, Maguindano, she said a total of 145 beneficiaries will receive nego-karts and steel payaos worth around P5.77 million.
“The identified beneficiaries comprise ambulant vendors and poor fisher folks,” Domingo said.
Parang Mayor Ibrahim Ibay, who personally received the grant in a simple ceremony held in Koronadal City, lauded the program’s expansion in his municipality.
He said the livelihood assistance complements the local government’s continuing efforts to improve the lives of its poor constituents.
“The nego-karts and steel payaos will greatly help our identified beneficiaries who are considered as among the poorest of the poor in our municipality,” he said.
Ibay assured that the local government will provide the necessary mechanisms to ensure that the program would be sustained and implemented properly.
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.
From January to December last year, DOLE-12 released nearly P47-million worth of grants under the DILEEP. (MindaNews)