Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Philippine President visits Veterans’ Village in Project 7 to lead govt-Church program to help the poor


President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo led today another visit to a depressed area in Metro Manila to extend government social services to the poor, the sector of society most vulnerable to the blows of the global crisis.

This time, the President visited the depressed areas of the Veterans’ Village in Project 7, Quezon City to distribute scholarships, offer trainings, livelihood and other social services for the poor residents.

The pro-poor project, which the Arroyo administration is carrying out jointly with the Catholic church, is a continuing program designed to soften the impact of the economic crisis buffeting the world on the poorest of the poor Filipinos.

Upon her arrival at the Christ the King Parish in Project 7, the President was welcomed by some 2,000 residents led by Quezon City Mayor Feliciano Belmonte, Vice Mayor Herbert Bautista and 1st District Rep. Vincent Crisologo.

Also on hand was Caritas Manila executive director Fr. Anton Pascual, Christ the King parish priest Fr. Henry Ferreras, Veterans’ Village Barangay Chair Giddy Gener, and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director-General Augusto Syjuco.

Fr. Pascual said that todate, the continuing government-church social development program has already benefited some 120,000 poor families in Metro Manila.

The President and Caritas have already gone to Tondo, Manila and Pasay City. Fr. Pascual said that next in the list of the places to be reached by the program are Caloocan, Novaliches and Pasig.

The support services project seeks to assist 300,000 of the poorest of the poor families in Metro Manila.

The President led the awarding of scholarship certificates from TESDA, microfinance assistance for poor residents identified by Caritas, the establishment of National Food Authority (NFA) rice outlets, and the conduct of medical clinics and various livelihood programs as part of the government-church partnership to improve the plight of poor families in Metro Manila.

Thanks to the tough economic and fiscal reforms instituted by the President, the government was able to generate enough resources to invest in infrastructure, human resource development, and provide essential social services to uplift the lives of the poor.

At the Vin d’ Honneur held earlier this morning in Malacanang, the President cited the P300-billion pump-priming package of the government to mitigate the effects of the global crisis that include allotments for infrastructure and social services.

The President also said that P10 billion was allotted to expand the roll of beneficiaries of the conditional cash transfer program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to protect the poor and the vulnerable sectors from problems arising from the global crisis.

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