During the pandemic, the government’s social pension (Socpen) program implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is not only providing support but also making a difference in the daily lives of elderly beneficiaries in Nueva Valencia town in the province of Guimaras.
Social pensioners, 75-year old Romulo Nava and 72 year-old Ramonita Ferrer, shared how the financial assistance helped augment their daily subsistence and boost their physical health during the socpen pay-out on May 24, 2022 held at the village of Concordia of the said town which was attended by Social Welfare Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista.
Romulo and his 68-year old wife Estelita were blessed with eight children of whom four were able to finish college but since most of them have their own families, the Nava couple is still struggling to meet both ends, especially during this pandemic.
Romulo said the pension they are receiving is a big help for their daily needs, particularly for their food and maintenance.
He thanked Bautista for visiting and inspiring them that despite old age, they are still productive members of the community.
Ramonita Ferrer, also from the said village, has also expressed her gratitude to DSWD for the cash aid.
Ferrer said her bedridden husband Jose, 71 years old, is also a Socpen beneficiary. Every release of stipend, she bought food, vitamins, and medicines.
During regular days, Ramonita sells "kakanin" in their village and neighboring towns. She wakes up at 3a.m. to prepare her native delicacies so she could have an additional income to sustain the medicinal needs of her sick husband.
For her, the pension given to them by the DSWD is a big help to extend the life of her husband.
As reported by DSWD 6, the pay-out in Concordia was the start of the three-day payout for some 3,863 social pensioners in Nueva Valencia amounting to P5,727,000.00 covering their second quarter pension.
Qualified beneficiaries receive a P500-monthly stipend every quarter with a total amount of P1,500 under the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens of the government.
During the event, Bautista was joined by Usec. Felicisimo Budiongan, Director Andrew Ambubuyog, Regional Director Ma. Evelyn Macapobre, Asst. Director for Administration Ryan Dela Gente, Protective Services Division Chief Lucita Villanueva and Social Pension focal person Mariecar Labinghisa. (dswd6/laf/PIA6)