|CSOs, NGOs: “third eye” of the CCT implementation|
|News Features - Civil Society Organizations|
|Written by 4Ps Social Marketing Unit|
|Monday, 21 November 2011 07:06|
"Bantay means they are doing the function of a watchdog. They are like the “third eye”. Tulay means they can give us feedback on what would not naturally be fed back to us by the bureaucracy. Kaagapay means we work with them as partners especially in microenterprise networks and organizations for sustainable livelihood as part of our Transition Strategy. Lastly, “gabay”, means utilizing social technologies they have that we can already use and learn from,” explained Sec. Dinky Soliman during the press conference for the CSO – DSWD Visayas Cluster Forum on CCT on the question regarding the involvement of the civil society organizations (CSOs), non-government organizations (NGOs), and volunteer groups in the implementation of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.
As a result of the recently concluded second leg of consultation with around 100 representatives from various CSOs from all throughout Visayas, the DSWD was able to seek wider support from the participating groups, elucidate areas for their expanded involvement and identify approaches for their better mobilization. Organized and hosted by the DSWD with the support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in collaboration with AusAID and the World Bank, the said forum is part of the on-going Policy Review on Pantawid Pamilya in preparation for the full expansion thrusts in implementing the program.
Relative to the program’s expansion, in his keynote address, Secretary Florencio Abad of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) highlighted the various priorities of the Aquino administration geared to complement and support the supply-side of the Pantawid Pamilya also popularly known as conditional cash transfer (CCT) program.
“Next year we are going to invest 238 billion in basic education. For the first time in history, we are going to build more than the usual number of classrooms next year. We are going to build 45,000 classrooms,” he reported to the CSO participants.
“In terms of public health, next year we are going to fully subsidize the health insurance program of the poor and indigent households. That's about 5.2 million households”, he joyfully added.
The CSOs also play huge role in augmenting resources as the program balloons to 3 million households next year. CSOs and volunteer organizations help facilitate Family Development Sessions (FDS) under the program. CSOs have also been tapped as validators for a recent “massive updating” exercise nationwide, facilitating the updating of eligible beneficiaries’ registration at schools and health centers. Some CSOs have also participated in Community Assemblies as part of the beneficiary identification process, taken part in an on-the-ground audit of the Compliance Verification System, and assisted in the Beneficiary Updating System and in implementation of the Grievance Redress System.
As a former member of a CSO, Sec. Joel Rocamora of the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) exhorted in his speech that it has long been his dream to involve civil society groups in reforms. “Matagal ko nang naisip, paano ba natin ma-harness ang skills at organizational resources ng CSOs for focused reform. Ito ang pagkakataon para magawa natin 'yan. And how successful we are in doing that will depend upon you”, he said to the CSO participants.
CSOs’ involvement in the implementation of Pantawid Pamilya is in line with the directive of President Benigno S. Aquino III on public-private partnership in the fulfillment of his platform of Good Governance and Poverty Reduction. As of October 31, 2011, two hundred sixty eight (268) national and local NGOs, faith-based and CSOs signed Memoranda of Agreements (MOAs) with the DSWD to be actively involved in the implementation, oversight, and expansion of the Pantawid Pamilya.
The Pantawid Pamilya is a human development program of the Philippine government that invests in the education and health of children age 0-14. It helps poor families gain leverage by giving opportunity for the advancement of the young people, breaking the vicious cycle of poverty transmission from generation to generation.