BALETE, Aklan – The Local Government Unit of Balete, Aklan has provided livelihood grant amounting P5,000 each to 59 Pantawid Pamilya households who graduated from the program recently due to not having children zero to 18 that need to be supported by the program.
This assistance is part of the commitment of the LGU under Mayor Dexter Calizo to support the exiting beneficiaries during the transition period. Through the help of Evangeline Gallega, the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer, they will be organizing these graduates into an association to facilitate capability building activities as well as for monitoring purposes.
Beverly Salazar, Provincial Link of Aklan Provincial Operation Office, expressed gratefulness to the LGU for the full support extended to the program.
“Maghupong kita tanan nga may pagsalig sa Ginoo kag sa gobyerno,” she said during the Graduation Ceremony held at the Gym of the said town recently.
Meanwhile, Imelda Montes, 56, a Parent Leader from Brgy. Aranas, said she can prove that the program is successful in improving the well-being of their family. She invested her income from the egg-laying project provided through the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and she is now a sari-sari store owner.
Both of her children are already in college and are taking up Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration at Aklan State University in Banga. Her husband is regularly employed as a welder of Royal Supermart, a local business. She said their combined income can now sustain their daily needs and provide for the education of their children.
“We can stand on our own already even without the help of our government,” she said.
On her part, Lindsay Castillo Felipe, 57, of Brgy. Calizo, also of this municipality, said that she is even more thankful with her four children having finished college. Two are already working as nurse and teacher, respectively while the other one is a newly graduate of Computer Science. She has only one remaining child enrolled in college who is taking up Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education major in English. Known for her leadership, she is the current president of the Child Development Workers in the municipality.
The children also affirmed the gains of the program as former Expanded Students Grants in Aid for Poverty Alleviation Program recipients. Both Mary Leah Panganonong, 22, and Marialie Castro, 26, graduated Cum Laude from West Visayas State University with a degree of Bachelor in Special Education. They are now waiting for their designation in Balete Integrated School..//mgc/ Diody Fadullan, PDO II