Be part of local development, DSWD urges Filipinos

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) urges Filipinos to join local development activities within their communities so they can become active participants in nation building.

“By participating in these activities that are critical to the development of their own communities, ordinary citizens can be heroes in their own way,” said DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman.

This was said in reference to the “bayanI Ka!” Awards of the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS), one of the Department’s biggest poverty alleviation programs.

Kalahi-CIDSS uses the community-driven development (CDD) strategy, an approach that engages citizens in local development so that they themselves will be the ones to determine and implement what interventions they need that will help their communities respond to issues affecting their poverty situation.

By engaging citizens as volunteers and local government units, national government agencies, civil society organizations, and other relevant groups as partners, Kalahi-CIDSS ensures that every member of the community has a personal stake in development and should play roles to promote this.

The “bayanI Ka!” Awards are intended to recognize citizens, local government units at the provincial, municipal, and barangay levels, and program staff in their involvement in nation building, within their capacity, through their participation in Kalahi-CIDSS, which was scaled up into a national community-driven development program in 2013.

Winners of the “bayanI Ka!” awards come from varying backgrounds, such as Catherine Asi, a Muslim woman from Lanao del Norte who was instrumental in helping resolve peace issues between Christians and Muslims in the town of Kauswagan, and Surigao del Sur Governor Johnny Pimentel, who provides continuous support and encouragement for the mayors within his province to implement Kalahi-CIDSS because he believes in the power of citizen involvement.

Through the “bayanI Ka!” Awards, DSWD hopes to show Filipinos that everyone, and not just those directly involved in development, can actively participate and perform critical roles in development, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, or profession. ###