BASIL PROGRAM LAUNCHED AT LAGUNA DE BAY
The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), in partnership with the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA), launched the BASIL (Balik Sigla sa Ilog at Lawa) Program at the Old Municipal Hall in Brgy. Baybayin, Los Baños, Laguna. BASIL is a national program, which aims to revive the dwindling population of fish in the country’s coastal fishing grounds, and make food accessible to poor families living near the large bodies of water. The program will seed the country’s lakes, rivers, and creeks with an estimated 200 million fingerlings of indigenous and non-invasive fish species such as ayungin, biya, tilapia, and bangus, among others. Laguna de Bay was chosen to pilot the groundbreaking program.
RED CROSS RECEIVES DONATIONS FROM ISRAEL FOR MARAWI
A few weeks into the Marawi crisis, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) received equipment, medicine, and supplies from Israel through the Israel Embassy. During the event, Chairman Richard Gordon stressed the urgent need for more support, donations, and volunteers. Responding to the crisis, PRC, together with the International Committee of the Red Cross Philippines, has since set up a health care unit in Baloi, Lanao del Norte to receive evacuees from Marawi. With 20 cot beds for patients, the PRC can serve up to 3,000 evacuees/patients in a month, and can accommodate medical consultations and minor surgery cases.
To participate and share donations, visit redcross.ph/volunteer.
SSS INCREASED COLLECTION IN FIRST QUARTER
According to reports, the Social Security System (SSS) was able to collect an estimated P52.18 billion from members’ contribution during the first four months of 2017. SSS President and CEO Emmanuel F. Dooc says this was an impressive 9.6% increase compared to last year’s collected P47.59 billion. SSS saw a 13.9% increase (compared to last year’s collection) in January 2017, amounting to P13.55 billion, and 12% increase in February, amounting to P12.86 billion. The increase in collection has been credited to aggressive campaigns like “Run After Contribution Evaders” (RACE), which penalizes delinquent employers. SSS is also proud to share that it has opened three new branches, 15 additional service official and two foreign offices to better serve its members.
ESTERO DE BINONDO GETS A NEW LOOK CARE OF PRRC
The Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC) inaugurated the newly rehabilitated Estero de Binondo Package 2 at Barangay 287, City of Manila. Helping to transform Pasig River and its environs, a 320-meter linear park was constructed from San Fernando Bridge to Alvarez Bridge. In line with its current programs, the PRRC also harvested the water hyacinths growing in the Pasig River to be used as raw material for the making of livelihood products such as table runners, bags, and accessories.
NCCA’S PANAKAYON: WESTERN VISAYAS CULTURAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
The National Commission for Culture and the Arts’ Panakayon: Western Visayas Cultural Development Program culminated with the Culture & Arts Camp, held in Cuartero, Capiz, last June 30 to July 2.
The camp is the culminating activity of the Panakayon project, which was conducted in five towns of Western Visayas: Jordan, Guimaras; San Jose, Antique; Miag-ao, Iloilo; Balete, Aklan; and Cuartero, Capiz. The camp gathered over 150 students, teachers, and LGU officials, and treated guests to amazing performances of local dances and an exhibition of traditional crafts. There were also demos on hablon- and pina-weaving from Iloilo and Aklan.
DEPED CONTINUES BRIGADA ESKWELA IN CRISIS AREAS
DepEd ARMM and DepEd Central Office continued Brigada Eskwela 2017 in the embattled city of Marawi and nearby affected areas, repairing the damaged schools and resuming education for the displaced students, teachers, and personnel.
As part of its rebuilding efforts, DepEd-Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service (DepEd-DRRMS)—in cooperation with the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), Mindanao State University Sining Kambayoka, Teach Peace Build Peace Movement, Xavier University, and the Psychological Association of the Philippines—conducted Psychological First Aid for the teachers. The workshop, which entails storytelling sessions, book-making activities, and games, will also be conducted separately or children/students at school.
DAR TURNS OVER P35.6M ROAD AND BRIDGE PROJECT
Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary Rafael Mariano turned over to the local government a P35.6 million road and bridge project as part of it efforts to improve the economic condition of farming communities in Apayao, Cordillera Administrative Region.
The road and bridge project benefits four barangays namely Allig, Sta. Maria, Balluyan, and Malayugan, and more than 500 farm households. After the project turnover, Sec. Mariano, DAR Undersecretary for Foreign Assisted Projects Sylvia Mallari, and Regional Director Atty. Marjorie Ayson distributed certificates of land ownership awards (CLOAS)—covering 770 hectares of agricultural lands located in Apayao, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga and Mt. Province—to 1,163 agrarian reform beneficiaries.
DOH’S SURGICAL CARAVAN HEADS TO LUBAO, PAMPANGA
The Department of Health (DOH) launched the Surgical Caravan in Lubao, Pampanga, fulfilling its commitment to further address the health needs of the poor. The Surgical Caravan offers free operations— minor and major—to indigent patients. Dubbed as “ToDOH Alaga, May TSeKaP na, May Operasyon Pa,” the Surgical Caravan is an offshoot of the Philippine Health Agenda (PHA)-Checkup program which, under the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte, addresses the need for surgical intervention for the poorer population. As the Surgical Caravan makes its way across the country, the identification and clearance of benefi implementation, and coordination will be managed by DOH regional offices and hospitals, PhilHealth, and LGUs (provincial and municipal), while other medical fees and laboratory procedures (pre- and post-op) will be covered by the DOH Medical Assistance Program Funds.