A total of PHP6.3 million in livelihood assistance were provided to several workers’ groups in Mindoro (Occidental and Oriental), Marinduque, Romblon, and Palawan (Mimaropa), the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) regional office reported on Wednesday.
In a news release, DOLE Mimaropa director Albert Gutib said the livelihood aid was given to marginalized workers to help them recover from the impact of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19 pandemic).
The beneficiaries from the provinces of Mindoro and Romblon include fishers association, coconut farmers, tricycle drivers, motorcycle shop workers, women’s group, and displaced workers.
In Mindoro, 96 members of fishers’ organization and tricycle drivers association received PHP725,000 assistance from the DOLE Integrated Livelihood Program (DILP).
In Occidental Mindoro, the Samhahan ng mga Inang Nagkakaisa ng Tahanan Association (SINTA) also received PHP500,000 assistance for their bakery project.
Also, 500 more displaced workers in the province benefitted from the PHP1.6-million Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program.
The beneficiaries are in addition to the 5,765 beneficiaries already provided with emergency employment assistance in the province at the height of the community quarantine.
In Romblon, the DOLE released PHP1 million to Sta. Maria Coconut Farmers and Processing Association (SMCFPA) for their production of high value-added coconut products.
Gutib said the SMCFPA is the first producer of coconut oil in the Province of Romblon. They are also assisted by the Department of Science and Technology in producing quality cooking oil.
Likewise, it released PHP1.5 million emergency employment assistance to informal workers in the municipality of Concepcion, Romblon. The workers received daily wage assistance through the TUPAD or emergency employment program.
“Our region is divided into island provinces but our team is one and united and determined to bring our package of assistance to our people especially to the vulnerable workers amid the crisis,” he added.
The beneficiaries rendered 10-day work, such as sanitation and disinfection, including repacking and distribution of relief goods in their community.
Each beneficiary received PHP3,200 based on the prevailing minimum wage in the region.
One of the TUPAD beneficiaries, Rolando Familaran said the employment assistance was a big help to him and also to the community since he received compensation and at the same time they were able to clean their area.
“I’m very thankful because I was able to earn and also help in cleaning our community. This is a big help to all of us especially during this time,” he added.
The TUPAD program is a community-based package of short-term wage employment assistance of the department to mitigate the impact of calamities, disasters, and pandemics on workers in the informal economy. (PNA)