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Team Basilan grants reintegration services to Sabah displaced persons
Fri, Jul 26, 2013 (Source: ICFO)
Isabela City, Basilan - As part of the commitment to provide reintegration services to our kababayans affected by the conflict in neighboring Sabah, the Department of Labor and Employment , Regional Office No. 9 (DOLE RO 9) in partnership with Provincial Government of Basilan, Technical Education Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) and the Philippine Information Agency9 (PIA 9), turned-over various kabuhayan starter kits to seven (7) displaced families last July 25, 2013 at the Provincial Capitol Ground, this city.

The livelihood assistance is in the form of tools, jigs, equipment, and raw materials needed for the native snacks, food preparation and pedicab (bicycle with sidecar) projects. Livelihood projects were likewise given to parents of child laborers, persons with disabilities, and displaced workers amounting to P117,800.00

The turn-over ceremonywas a convergence of development partners and participated in by Team Basilan and AdministratrixTahira Ismael representing Gov. Jum J. Akbar, Mr. AbdulmannanUckung of TESDA- ARMM, Harija Totoh of PSWDO, and Rene Carbayas of PIA Basulta.

Administratrix Ismael intimated the holistic plan and commitment of Team Basilan from health, education, training, and livelihood tothe affected and victims of the conflict numbering to 1,097 profiled by PSWDO. However, statistics show that the number is close to 5,000. “Hindi namin kayo pababayaan,” she added understanding the difficulty, challenges, and trauma experiencedby the displaced persons.

TESDA ARMM Provincial Training Center Head Abs Uckung shared the skills and training interventions to the interested and qualified beneficiaries particularly the affected individuals of the Sabah crisis. Accordingly, Cash for Training Program with the PSWDO and relevant short term courses are at stake to 600 Basileños.

Testimonies from Melanie Sampang and Elsid Villanueva, both from Barangay Carbon, Malamawi Island, thanked the government assistance saying, “ito ay malaking tulong para makapagsimula kami ulit.”

Engr. Wesley Tan, OIC of DOLE Isabela shared the marching order of Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldozon the provision of kabuhayanstarter kits to those who wish to engage in business and encourage development partners to use the power of service to change and make dents into the lives of displaced persons.

After the blessed month of Ramadan, Team Basilan, a Peace and Development Coordinating Committee, will re-assess and pool together resources to synchronize efforts for collective, meaningful, and sustainable re-integration assistance.

Marcy Arcaya and Cely Cabang, DOLE-ICFO

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