Archive | April 13th, 2018

DSWD travel clearance needed for minors traveling abroad alone, without parents

To prevent any form of abuse against minors, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reiterated its guidelines to secure travel clearance for children 17 years old and below who are traveling abroad alone or without their parents.

DSWD Officer-in-Charge (OIC) Emmanuel A. Leyco explained that the issuance of travel clearances for children is specified under the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act and the Philippine Passport Act of 1996. It is a requirement to safeguard Filipino children from child trafficking and exploitation, especially those who are participating in short study grants and out-of-the-country competitions.

“We continue to remind parents and guardians to properly secure travel clearance for Filipino minors because it will help safeguard children from various form of abuse while traveling outside the country,” he said.

The following are the requirements needed to obtain travel clearance for minors traveling abroad:

  • Duly accomplished application form that can be secured from any DSWD regional office. The form can also be downloaded from the DSWD website www.dswd.gov.ph;
  • Photocopy of the child’s Birth Certificate or PSA-issued Birth Certificate;
  • Notarized (notarized at the place of residence) affidavit of consent of both parents or the solo parent or the legal guardian, indicating the authorized traveling companion of the minor and his/her relationship to the minor, country of destination, length of stay, purpose of travel, and tentative dates of departure and arrival;
  • As appropriate, a PSA-issued marriage certificate of the minor’s parents or a photocopy of the certificate of legal guardianship of the minor or in the case of solo parents, a PSA-issued Certificate of No Marriage (CENOMAR) and a photocopy of the solo parent identification card from the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office or a photocopy of a certification from the Local Social Welfare and Development Office of being a solo parent or Tallaq or Faskh certification from the Shariah court or any Muslim Barangay or religious leader or in the case of an illegitimate minor, a certificate of no marriage (CENOMAR)* from the PSA or in the case of a deceased parent, a photocopy of the death certificate;
  • Minors who will be accompanied by a person other than their parents or legal guardian during the trip must also provide a photocopy of his/her adult companion’s passport;
  • Illegitimate children traveling abroad accompanied by their biological father are also required to secure a travel clearance certificate as parental authority is vested only to the mother of the child, per Article 176 of the Family Code of the Philippines.

If deemed necessary, social workers may require additional documentary requirements during the assessment of the travel clearance to ensure that the welfare and best interest of the child is protected.

Moreover, the clearance shall be valid for a period of one or two years depending on the period applied for and shall be valid for multiple travels except for minors traveling with foster parents.

Should there be changes in the issued or used travel clearance such as companion or country of destination, changes can be done as long as the travel clearance is within the validity period. For this, the following documents should be submitted: photocopy of minor’s passport with marked embarkation and notarized affidavit from parents or legal guardians regarding the change of traveling companion or country of destination or return ticket.

No additional fee shall be charged for the changes.

A processing fee for each travel clearance issued to minors traveling abroad under the following options:

P300.00 with validity of one year.
P600.00 with validity of two years.
Travel clearance approval and issuance may be obtained within 24 hours as long as all the supporting documents are completed, submitted, and assessed by social workers. The application should be lodged in the DSWD Field Office that has jurisdiction over the residence of the minor.

“Though the clearance can be secured within the filing day, we advise parents or applicants to apply one to two weeks before their scheduled travel date to give ample time to address issues that may arise or produce documents that may be required,” OIC Leyco said. (DSWD/SMS)###

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Livelihood assemblies held in Davao Region barangays

Davao City (DSWD XI) -The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through its Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) has recently conducted its SLP Assembly in some areas in the region including Manay in Davao Oriental, Mawab in Compostela Valley, Padada in Davao del Sur, Sta. Maria in Davao Occidental, Kapalong in Davao del Norte, and Marilog District in Davao City.

An overwhelming attendance of at least 200 people has been documented in each of the said assemblies conducted within April.

With the recent changes to the program’s guidelines, the SLP now adheres to the value of inclusivity. Hence, the program operates in all regions and in all poor provinces, treats all municipalities and barangays as potential areas for implementation, and is open to every Filipino family especially the poor, marginalized, vulnerable, and disadvantaged.

The SLP has lined up more assemblies for the identification of participants and livelihood projects in the coming weeks. All interested participants may approach the assigned DSWD Project Development Officer (PDO) in their area and may inquire of the date and venue of their SLP Assembly.

The Sustainable Livelihood Program aims to enhance the capabilities of poor Filipino households and individuals by strengthening their skills, competencies, abilities, and resources in accessing income-generating opportunities to help improve their socio-economic well-being. (DSWD)

 

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Pantawid Pamilya: Conduit to education

San Isidro, Davao Oriental (DSWD XI) – “For me, to graduate from college is just a stepping stone in reaching much bigger dreams,” 19 year-old Expanded Students’ Grant-in-Aid Program for Poverty Alleviation (ESGP-PA) grantee Dachel April Ladera said.

Dachel believes this scholarship grant has paved the way for her to finish and achieve her dreams.

Dachel is graduating from Davao Oriental State College of Science and Technology (DOSCST) in Mati City, Davao Oriental, taking up Bachelor of Science Major in Elementary Education. She has been a top achiever in her class since grade school and now, she will graduate Cum Laude.

Dachel is the oldest of three siblings. Her family resides in Barangay Bato-bato. Her father Daniel, works as motorcycle driver. Her mother Rachel, is a Pantawid Pamilya parent leader, volunteer, and a midwife in the town.  The hardship her family is experiencing has been her driving force to finish her studies.

Sauna damgo lang nako mahimong scholar since elementary. Na grant siya college nako. Abi nako ang skolar kay prebelihiyo lang pero usa pud diay ni ka responsibilidad ug angay nga ampingan. Bonus na ang maging topnotcher ka. Dako nga pride sa imohang parents nga bisan sa kalisod sa kinabuhi nakahuman ko with flying colors pa (It was my dream to be a scholar since grade school but I got my wish when I was already in college. Back then I thought a scholarship is a mere privilege but I realized it is also a responsibility which must be valued. Being a topnotcher is already a bonus. It a great pride of my parents that despite the hardships in life, I graduated and with flying colors at that),” Dachel proudly beamed.

Dachel’s family enrolled in Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program in 2011 and she became a grantee of ESGP-PA in 2014.

To the tops

“Dili sayon ang muskwela pero giisip nako na dili tanan natagaan ani nga oportunidad. Dako kaayo ang kabag-ohan kay wala na naglisod akoang ginikanan. Dili sila mabalaka sa bayrunon sa eskwelahan. Sauna, lisod kaayo, ang sweldo ni mama wala pa nadawat amoa nang gikaon. Si papa, and iyahang kita sa tricycle igo lang sa tangkong para sa baboy ug amoang gamay nga panginahanglan. Ang pantawid gyud ang dakog tabang sa amoang pamilya” (It is not easy to attend school but I reminded myself not all are given this kind of opportunity. There was a remarkable change since my parents weren’t anymore that stressed out. No more worries on school fees. But it was really so tough before that even the salary of my mother would have already been used up even before she received it. My father’s meager earnings would just be enough to purchase water spinach (kangkong) to feed our hogs and buy some basic family needs. It was Pantawid that really pulled us through),” Dachel recounted.

“Ang paghuman nako importante ni sa akoang pamilya bilang isa ka panganay kay ako ang modelo sa akoang mga igsuon, ginatan-aw ko nila nga inpirasyon. Importante sad kini sa akoang ginikanan kay tanan pawis kay bayad tanan” (My graduation is important to my family, to me who is the eldest, being a model and inspiration. This too is important to my parents since all their sacrifices paid off).”

“I have bigger dreams and to be able to graduate is just a start of my journey to a bigger opportunity. I believe that the world has much to offer and I just need to strive hard to reach all the things I desire for me and my family. A great burden was lifted from me as this scholarship grant has paved the way for me to finish and achieve my college degree.”

When asked what her dreams are for her family, the ever optimistic Dachel replied, “Makapa-eskwela sa akong mga igsuon ug maging topnatcher sa board exam.  Ang mangandoy kay libre so dakuon nalang nimo sabayan ug paningkamot (I want to help my younger siblings finish their studies and be a board exam topnatcher. It is free to dream so I will dream big coupled with hardwork).”

Aside from passing the board exam, Dachel plans to teach children in San Isidro so she can impart her knowledge. She also wanted to teach in other remote areas in Davao Oriental to serve as inspiration to other children.

‘Don’t stop dreaming and never say die.’ “This one says it all. We may have different stories of overcoming poverty. What’s important in this life’s journey is to be positive and have faith always, strong spiritual life, and a belief that God will never forsake you especially amidst hardships and trials. If you have faith and determination, you can make your goal come true,” Dachel added.

Pantawid scholars

A student-grantee receives a maximum of P 60,000.00 scholarship grant per school year or P 30,000.00 per semester. This is broken down to P20, 000/year Tuition Fee Cost, P 5,000/year Textbook Fees and other learning materials, and P 35,000 (that is, P 3,500/month x 10 months) stipend (for board and lodging, transportation, clothing, health/medical needs, basic school supplies and other related costs).

The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) implemented the program in 2012. ESGP-PA ensures that grantees are 1) enrolled in selected state universities and colleges (SUCs) duly recognized by CHED, 2) channelled to CHED priority courses, and 3) be extended the needed support that will guarantee completion of studies thus qualify them for a high-value added jobs in the future.

More than 30,000 Pantawid Pamilya student-grantees all over the country will graduate this year.

Davao Region currently has 1,959 college scholars in five SUCs –University of Southeastern Philippines (USEP) Obrero Campus, Davao Oriental State College of Science and Technology (DOSCST), Davao del Norte State College Panabo (DNSC), Southern Philippines Agri-Business, Marine and Aquatic School of Technology Digos City Campus (SPAMAST), and SPAMAST Malita Campus. (DSWD)

 

 

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