More than two months since the temporary closure of Boracay Island to tourists, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), through its Field Office (FO) in Region VI, continues to assist the residents and workers in the renowned destination to help them cope with the impact of the island’s closure.

The DSWD is part of the Boracay Inter-agency Task Force and is tasked to oversee the provision of social safety nets to families and individuals affected by the island’s closure through livelihood, employment, and training.

To assist the residents, the Department provides different types of livelihood aid, including Micro-Enterprise Assistance, Employment Support, and Livelihood Asset Rehabilitation grants. It also implements Community-Based Livelihood and Enterprise Projects, Cash-for-Work (CFW) Program, and Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS).

As of June 30, 2018, the DSWD has provided 3,849 families and individuals with micro-enterprise assistance and employment support grants for a total amount of P57,735,000.

About 9,175 families and individuals have already been assessed for the grants. The Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) Satellite Office in Boracay of DSWD FO VI  is also currently administering grant needs assessment to determine who among those profiled are eligible for livelihood grants.

Meanwhile, the DSWD has already requested for a P90 million fund augmentation from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for the Phase 2 implementation of community-based livelihood and enterprise projects to Boracay residents. The Boracay Technical Support Team of the DSWD SLP and Field Office VI are working on the implementation guidelines for the projects.

The Department’s Cash-For-Work (CFW) Program, on the other hand, has already benefitted 1,562 residents in Boracay. The CFW has 1,898 target beneficiaries for a total amount of P18,420,090 for the first batch of its implementation. Profiling of residents for the second batch of CFW is also ongoing.

Once the budget for the program has been fully utilized, the DSWD will provide a livelihood asset rehabilitation grant for eligible families who will render short-term work. A total of P9.7 million has been earmarked for the grant.

Apart from livelihood assistance, the Department is providing AICS in its operations center in Boracay. Through this assistance, families and individuals facing a crisis may avail of medical, burial, educational, and transportation aid.

As of the end of June, the DSWD has extended aid through AICS to 15,960 families and individuals for a total amount of P38,554,990.68.

Of this amount, P25,108,590.68 has been provided to Boracay workers and residents who availed of the transportation assistance, while P10,682,900  has been extended to those who availed of the educational assistance. Meanwhile, the Department has provided a total of P2,721,500 and P42,000 to residents who availed of medical assistance and burial assistance, respectively.

Asahan po ninyo na patuloy po naming tutulungan ang ating mga kababayang apektado ng pagsasara ng Boracay para sa rehabilitation nito. Aalalayan po natin sila haggang sa magbukas muli ang isla at makabalik sila sa kanilang normal na buhay na may maayos na kabuhayan (Rest assured that we will continue to help our fellow citizens affected by the closure of Boracay to tourists to give way to its rehabilitation. We will assist them until the island reopens in October and they bounce back to their normal lives with a stable source of income),” DSWD Acting Secretary Virginia N. Orogo said. ###