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Miscellaneous

BP2 sparks new hope for beneficiaries

DSWD SLP

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), through its Field Office IX, conducted the Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa (BP2) convergence activity on August 11 at the Royal Farm Resort in Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte.

Dubbed as “Sama-samang Pagkilos Tungo sa Bagong Pag-asa,” the convergence activity aimed at showcasing the program’s wins and accomplishments, remaining targets, and its ways forward to achieving the goal of bringing a better future for Filipino families, especially those who are poor, vulnerable, and marginalized.

In his keynote message, DSWD Secretary Erwin T. Tulfo emphasized that the BP2 program is more than just sending families back to their respective provinces but more about giving Filipinos renewed hope for success in the province.

“Through the Balik Probinsya Program, we are giving families a chance not only to go back to their roots, but also to build bigger and better things in their home provinces as they start a new life. BP2 families are not only program beneficiaries, they are also agents of change, bringing fresh perspectives and new opportunities back to their communities,” the Secretary said.

This was echoed by DSWD Undersecretary for Operations Jerico Francis L. Javier who said that “as the name implies, the primary purpose of the BP2 program is to give families renewed hope, to give families ‘Bagong Pag-asa’ that they will have a better and brighter future ahead of them in the province.”

During the activity, KapitBisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS) OIC-National Program Manager Ma. Consuelo O. Acosta presented the national coverage and criteria selection for the BP2 Program. Meanwhile, Ms. Ma. Socorro S. Macaso, Assistant Regional Director for Operations of DSWD Field Office IX discussed the assistance packages and implementation updates for Region IX. These presentations outlined the accomplishments of the program and what is in store for the future implementation.

Several BP2 family beneficiaries were also present during the convergence activity. They shared how the BP2 program, through the Community-Driven Development (CDD) approach, provided them with new opportunities through capability-building interventions. Likewise, they also shared how the program’s assistance packages supported them not only during their initial transition back to the province, but also in building new roots for future development.

Speaking about her experience as a BP2 beneficiary, Roselyn Belladares who lost her job as a call center agent before deciding to relocate back to Naga, Zamboanga Sibugay shared, “Ang expectation namin pagdating namin dito ay ang magnegosyo sa pamamagitan ng tulong ng gobyerno. Sa tulong ng lahat, nakapagsimula nga kami ng negosyo. Guminhawa ang buhay namin. Nakatulog na ako ng mahimbing. Kaya na namin maibigay ang mga pangangailangan ng mga anak namin” (Our expectation when we came here was to do business. With the help of the government, we were able to start a business. Our life became easier. I slept soundly. We can now provide for the needs of our children).

To further cement the program as a hallmark of government cooperation towards inclusive, sustainable, and balanced growth and development, the convergence program concluded with a ceremonial commitment signing from various stakeholders including representatives from the different government agencies comprising the BP2 Council.

As of 15 July, the BP2 Program has sent more than 4,300 families back to their home provinces since it was implemented at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

More than just sending families home, the BP2 program provides beneficiaries with various interventions including transitory family support package, transportation or relocation assistance, emergency family assistance, livelihood settlement grants, and psychosocial support, among others, to help them start anew in their home towns.

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