Davao City – The national validation team for the 2015 Presidential Award for Child-Friendly Cities and Municipalities are currently in town to review programs and initiatives of the city in delivering responsive interventions in the promotion and protection of children’s rights and welfare.

Representing DSWD National Office, Juvenile Justice and Welfare Council and Council for the Welfare of Children, the validating team will be here until Friday, December 11.

The team conducted a table validation of documents as well as focus group discussions with key city officials. The group also visited four barangays which they picked randomly last Monday and conducted on-site validation of local children-centered policies, activities and facilities.

In 2013 and 2014, Davao City was named Most Child-Friendly City in the Philippines under the Highly Urbanized Category.

This year, Davao City is competing with Baguio, Mandaluyong and Bacolod cities. If Davao wins and surpasses it scores in the last two years, it shall be confirmed the ‘Hall of Fame Award’.

LGUs shortlisted as national finalists should have passed the Mandatory Child-Friendly Local Governance Audit led by Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). Upon approval of the Board of the Council for Welfare of Children, same LGUs are then conferred with the Seal of Child-Friendly Local Governance. Only four LGUs with the highest scores will qualify as national finalists for the presidential award.

“Our victory depends on us and on no one else, on the hard work that we have done. All the awards are nothing if we fail to give the children all they need. We have worked hard and long especially CSSDO (City Social Services and Development Office) led by Ma. Luisa Bermudo. The validation team is here to confirm our reports and the actual situation on the ground,” pointed out City Administrator Atty. Jesus Melchor V. Quitain Jr. who represented Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte during the Opening Conference on Monday at Ritz Hotel. (DSWD)