TABACO CITY — The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has started distributing livelihood assistance grants (LAGs) amounting to P68.48 million to more than 7,600 Bicolanos across their region.
DSWD-Bicol Director Arnel Garcia said the beneficiaries are from Camarines Sur with P22.182 million for 2,561 families; Albay, P14.924 million for 1,736; Masbate, P12.254 million for 1,119; Sorsogon, P9.179 million for 776; Camarines Norte, P6.03 million for 969; and Catanduanes, P3.915 million for 484 families.
The target beneficiaries were pre-assessed using the DSWD Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) for Bicol, in accordance with RA11494, the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act.
The criteria include 1) inclusion in the list of target families as enumerated in Section VI-A of the Omnibus Guidelines in the implementation of DSWD’s Emergency Subsidy Program (ESP) with at least one member working in the informal sector prior to the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and profiled through the Social Amelioration Card (SAC) for non-Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiaries;
2) Source/s of income (employment, livelihood, etc.) were affected during the ECQ or locally-declared or mandated quarantine and/or projected to continuously be affected in the next three to six months after the lifting of the ECQ and locally-declared or mandated community quarantine; and 3) Not included as recipients of various livelihood recovery or rehabilitation projects of other national government agencies and/or other stakeholders.
The schedule of LAG distribution is coordinated with the LGUs, and beneficiaries have been advised to prepare the required and complete documents, Garcia said.
DSWD Regional Program Coordinator Earl Maximillan A. Cecilio said the expected outcome after LAG was provided is for the grant recipient or the eligible family to have income-generating economic activities.
Cecilio said beneficiary “may opt to have micro-enterprise and employment-related projects at the same time or one or more micro-enterprise or employment-related projects, provided, however, that the amount of LAG for all the projects identified by the beneficiary will not exceed P5,000.”
He explained that LAG is financial assistance granted to eligible low-income families belonging to the informal sector whose livelihoods were affected by the community quarantine, and can be used as support to preferred micro-enterprise activities of the beneficiary; or augmentation to the expenses on pre-employment, food, and transportation allowance of the beneficiary during the first month of employment.