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DSWD chief joins PBBM in Isabela, Cagayan for aid distribution to farmers, fisherfolk

Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rex Gatchalian joined President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. in Cagayan Valley Region on Monday (June 10) to distribute aid and presidential assistance to select farmers, fisherfolk, and their families affected by the effects of the El Niño phenomenon.

“Sa araw na ito, maghahandog kami ng karagdagang tulong sa ating mga magsasaka, mangingisda, at sa kanilang mga pamilya na kasama natin dito ngayon. Nilalayon namin na maibsan ang hirap na inyong nararanasan dahil sa El Niño nang sa gayon ay makabangon at muling makabalik ang kasaganahan ng inyong kabuhayan,” President Marcos said in his message to the beneficiaries at the Ilagan City Community Center in the City of Ilagan, Isabela province.

(Today, we will provide additional assistance to our farmers, fisherfolk and their families who are with us today. Our aim is to alleviate the difficulties you are experiencing due to El Niño so that prosperity can return to your livelihood.)

The Chief Executive turned over farm and fishing machinery, equipment, and toolkits to the beneficiaries affected by the dry spell.

President Marcos mentioned that the DSWD has allotted disaster response funds as augmentation support to El Niño-affected families and individuals in the Cagayan Valley (Region 2.) Region, which is composed of the provinces of Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya and Quirino.

“Kung susumahin, aabot sa mahigit isang daan at siyamnapu’t anim na milyong piso ang hinanda ng DSWD bilang standby funds at stockpile para sa Region 2,” the President said.

(In total, the DSWD has allotted more than Php196 million in standby funds and stockpile for Region 2.)

A total of Php5 million standby funds is allocated to the region with 80,907 boxes of prepositioned family food packs (FFPs) and more than Php95.8 million worth of other food and non-food items.

The agency also extended Php10,000 financial assistance to 5,000 select beneficiaries under the Ayuda sa Kapos ang Kita Program (AKAP).

The recently-launched AKAP program provides social assistance to individuals who may not have access to the regular forms of assistance since they do not belong to the poorest population.

To qualify as a beneficiary under AKAP, the individual must belong to the low-income category, such as those whose income does not exceed the statutory minimum wage.

Top officials of the national and local governments also attended the activity.

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