DSWD-12 opens rehab center for youths facing criminal cases

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 22 Oct) ­– The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has formally opened its P32.9-million regional rehabilitation center for youths and children facing criminal cases located in Tantangan town, South Cotabato.

Cezario Joel Espejo, DSWD-12 regional director, said in a statement the “state-of-the-art” facility is now fully operational and caters to male children in conflict with the law (CICLs) who are undergoing intensive treatment and rehabilitation.

The Regional Rehabilitation Center for Youth (RRCY) has a capacity of 60 beds and currently the largest in the region, according to Espejo.

It sits in a 5,000-square-meter lot in Barangay Bukay Pait, Tantangan and features a dormitory, administration building and a covered court with a stage that will serve as recreation center.

Social Welfare Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista personally led the inauguration of the center last Friday.

Espejo said they pushed for the construction of the center, which was moved from its previous location in Tupi town, to ensure the protection of the rights of children who are facing criminal cases.

The RRCY’s clients, also known as “residents,” are young children who were ordered by the court to undergo rehabilitation while waiting for the suspension of their cases, he said.

Espejo added they will be given various interventions to properly prepare them for reintegration with their families and communities.

“This is a concrete action to fulfil our mandate to provide social protection and promote the rights and welfare of our children,” he said.

The local government of Tantangan, through Mayor Benjamin Figueroa Jr., has committed to provide the necessary support for the facility, which is managed by DSWD-12

The Public Attorney’s Office-Region 12 provides technical assistance and other support initiatives in its operations. (MindaNews)