TAGUIG City-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano pushed for the passage of a bill seeking to create a national program to support and care for abandoned, neglected, and voluntary committed children in the Philippines.
“If you would allow us, even just as a partner from afar, we would like to continue helping you in the ministries, especially the children,” Cayetano said during the handover of donations to three orphanages held at the Mother Teresa Spinelli’s Treasures, Inc. in Tagaytay City on October 30.
“We do not know many of the children here… but some of them will be our future mayors, or future business leaders, or future leaders of the church, or maybe even our future President. So every single care that we give them really changes the world,” Cayetano said.
Joined by Taguig Second District Rep. Maria Laarni Cayetano, Cavite (8th District) Rep. Abraham Tolentino, and Tagaytay City Mayor Agnes Tolentino, Cayetano handed over packs of cream dory and chicken leg quarters, cases of diapers, vegetables, toys, and books to 49 children and 46 staff members.
The recipients were represented by Sister Lermie Maniquez of the Mother Teresa Spinelli’s Treasures, Inc., Sister Elma Nebreja of the Carmelite Sisters of Charity-Vedruna, and Michelle Ignacio of the Bukal ng Pag-Asa Missionaries of Charity.
In July 2019, Cayetano filed House Bill No. 00003 or the proposed “Trust Fund for the Abandoned, Neglected, or Voluntary Committed Child of 2019,” seeking to create a comprehensive monitoring system to address the needs of the abandoned, neglected, and voluntary committed children.
Among others, the proposed bill aims to establish a trust fund account in a trust entity that shall be opened in the name of every covered abandoned, neglected, or voluntary committed child.
Covering all abandoned, neglected, or voluntary committed children under the care of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) or DSWD-accredited child-charing institutions that may be recognized by the DSWD, the bill seeks to provide them with seed money to help them “face the challenges of life and pursue his or her dreams.”
“While a number of laws have already been enacted to pursue the State policy, there is a need for a stronger mechanism to provide for the needs of the abandoned, neglected, or voluntary committed children, who — like the other children of their age — would also need parental support and guidance so they can reach their fullest potential and grow up to be morally upright individuals and civic-minded citizens for our country,” the bill reads.
The proposed bill was approved by the House committee on wealfare of children led by Tingog party-list Rep. Yedda Marie K. Romualdez and has been transmitted to the House committee on appropriations in 2019.