The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VII recently launched the implementation of Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services National Community Driven Development Program or the Kalahi-CIDDS NCDDP in the 27 additional municipalities in Central Visayas.

The mayors of Batuan, Corella, Cortes, Dagohoy, Dauis, Dimiao, Duero, Garcia Hernandez, Panglao, Sierra Bullones, and Sikatuna in Bohol; Alegria, Alcantara, Argao, Aloguinsan, Badian, Boljoon, Dalaguete, Malabuyoc, Moalboal, Oslob, Pinamungahan, Ronda, and Samboan in Cebu; Maria and San Juan in Siquijor; and Siaton in Negros Oriental signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for their communities to be enrolled and become part of this anti-poverty program of the government.

The Kalahi-CIDSS, which started in 2003 with only 11 municipalities in Central Visayas has already grown with 96 municipalities including the new stakeholders this 2015.

Each of the communities of these towns will have to identify their needs and create a project of their own, which could be benefitted by the people, such as Day Care Centers, Health Stations, Water Systems or Evacuation centers.

What makes Kalahi-CIDSS different from other programs is that the funds each community will receive for their proposed projects will be deposited straight to their community’s bank account

“Kalahi-CIDSS is one of the core programs of the Department which aims to empower communities, improve local governance, and reduce poverty,” DWSD – 7 Asst. Regional Director for Operations Ms. Shalaine Marie S. Lucero said.

DSWD Field Office VII along with its partner agencies support and guide the municipalities to make them better and also to empower the people in the community as they would be part of their own project from start to finish.

Three mayors of the recent municipalities to join the Kalahi-CIDSS, Mayor Danilo Guivencan of Dimiao, Bohol; Mayor Verna Magallon of Alegria, Cebu; and Mayor Alberto Ator of Siaton, Negros Oriental expressed their gratitude and excitement over being selected to be part of the program.

“I feel humbled by the challenge of me writing the goals of transparency, empowerment, and accountability in getting the people to overcome poverty through participation,” said Mayor Verna Magallon.

“Nagpasalamat gyud kog dako nga kaning atong programa, Kalahi-CIDSS, naapil gyud ang lungsod sa Siaton (I am really thankful that this program, Kalahi-CIDSS, selected the town of Siaton),” said Mayor Alberto Ator.

“It will definitely both help our economy, and more importantly bring movement into our community. Today is the beginning of another partnership within our goal and prayers that our local chief executive, national government agency head, and community will embrace Kalahi-CIDSS and provide all out support in its implementation,” Lucero said in her speech.

“The biggest challenge sa ato (to us), the national line agencies, and local government units is to utilize, to develop ang atong (our) absorptive capacity, to implement those priority projects,” said the event’s Keynote Speaker, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) – 7 Asst. Regional Director Mr. Elias F. Fernandez, Jr.

The participants signed the Pledge of Commitment to help the people attain the change and improvement in each of their municipalities.

The Municipal Social Welfare and Development Officers (MSWDOs), Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator (MPDCs), and other local officials, representatives of the national government agencies and DSWD staff attended activity. ###