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DSWD distributes over P80M in emergency aid to earthquake-affected families in Sarangani

DSWD-12 Regional Director Loreto Cabaya Jr. interacted with the beneficiaries of the national government's emergency cash assistance distributed to thousands of families in Glan, Alabel, and Malapatan whose houses incurred either partial or total damage as a result of the magnitude 6.8 earthquake that hit Sarangani on November 17, 2023. (Photo courtesy of Sarangani Provincial Information Office)

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (PIA) -- The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD-12), in collaboration with the local government of Sarangani, handed over P80,754,000 in emergency cash assistance (ECA) to 5,465 families affected by the magnitude 6.8 earthquake that rocked Sarangani late last year.

DSWD Regional Director Loreto Cabaya Jr. and Governor Rogelio Pacquiao led the turnover of the emergency assistance that aimed to provide “financial relief” to families grappling with the aftermath of the seismic event. 

Cabaya said the distribution of emergency assistance, which was held at the Poblacion Covered Court in Alabel town on Jan. 18, targeted families in the municipalities of Alabel, Malapatan, and Glan who experienced either partial or total damage to their homes.

He further explained that of the total amount, the agency handed out P13,000 to each of the 5,006 families with partially damaged houses and P27,180 to each of the 459 families with totally damaged houses.

Cabaya also conveyed his thanks to the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Offices (MDRRMOs) and the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Offices (MSWDOs) in the three towns for helping them identify the recipients for the cash payout through an in-depth assessment.

“Pasalamat mi [sa mga] mayor sa ilang persistence nga pagtabang pud sa DSWD, dili madali, dili mahan-ay ang among paghatag kung dili magtabang sa amo una ang Municipal Social Welfare Development Office (MSWDO), ang Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO), nga maoy naghatag sa amo sa LisTahanan [We are thankful to the mayors for their persistent efforts in assisting the DSWD. It's not easy, and our distribution wouldn't have been smooth if not for the assistance provided by our MSWDO and MDRRMO, which played a crucial part in the distribution process],” Cabaya noted.

Meanwhile, Pacquiao expressed his appreciation as he lauded the local government and national government officials for their consistent support as he reflected on the visit of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to General Santos City on November 23, 2023, to personally oversee the distribution of relief assistance to the earthquake victims.

"Amo gyung gipaabot ang atong mga concerns diri, mao na nga naay mga suporta, ayuda gikan sa national government. Mao na, nindot ang relasyon sa local government ug national government, paspas ang ilahang pagsuporta sa atoang panginahanglan [we really conveyed to (the president) our concerns here, which resulted in the speedy support and assistance from the national government since we have a healthy relationship with them. They have swiftly provided us with support to address our immediate needs],” he said, recounting the challenges faced by the province’s three most affected local government units during the earthquake.

Pacquiao also acknowledged the resilience of his constituents, whom he fondly referred to as the “Sarangans,” commending the community's ability to bounce back despite facing multiple calamities.

"Sa kalisod man o kalipay, kauban ninyo ang gobyerno, sa barangay, munisipyo, probinsya, ug even sa national [In difficult or happy times, the government is with you, from the barangay, municipality, province, and even at the national level]," the governor assured his constituents as he reaffirmed the government’s commitment during times of difficulty at all costs. (HJPF-PIA SarGen, with reports from Sarangani Provincial Information Office)

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