4Ps strengthens partnerships with stakeholders
SILAY CITY, Negros Occidental – The purpose of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) is to give social assistance through cash grants to qualified household beneficiaries and social development by investing in the health and education of these poor children which aims to break the intergenerational cycle of poverty.
However, this program will not be successfully implemented without the help of our development partners particularly the Department of Education (DepEd) as they work together with the Agency to give children access to education, basic health services, and hunger eradication.
In 2020, as the entire country faced COVID-19, the school principal of Hawaiian Philippine Company Elementary School (HPCOES) in this city was taken aback by the impact of the pandemic on the education, health, and nutrition of the learners and their families. Before the pandemic, School Principal I Mr. Kenneth Lacson had already organized the parents of these 4Ps children enrolled in the school to set up and maintain a vegetable garden which, at that time, provided additional ingredients used in the school-based Feeding Program.
When community quarantine was ordered and implemented in the entire country, Lacson secured a “pass” from the city government that allowed him to travel daily from his house to school to help maintain their vegetable garden due to the absence of all their workers. He then opened the school garden to all the 4Ps beneficiaries living nearby and to those who needed food just to get through this tough period. This gave the school head a huge realization of the possible contributions of the 4Ps to the community and the school.
Later, even though Lacson was transferred to another adjacent school of Guinhalaran Integrated School (GIS), he still adopted this practice. He is organizing different activities involving 4Ps parents such as community gardens, tree planting, clean-up drives, and conferences. Lacson emphasized the great impact and positive effects of the community when everyone is cooperating.
Lacson aims to change the negative perception of the community of the 4Ps beneficiaries from being “dependents” to “partners” of the school and community in creating social changes. This helps uplift the spirit and boost the confidence of the beneficiaries and their families.
Lacson said if he has something to suggest for the betterment of the program, let it give the school a chance to create programs, projects, and activities that will be a venue for the beneficiaries to be 100% involved from planning to implementation.
“That they will be given more ownership of any actions towards their overall progress. As the saying goes: “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”, he said. (Submitted by Silay City Team, Negros POO1)