DSWD Secretary Dinky Soliman. file photo=
DSWD Secretary Dinky Soliman. file photo=

TACLOBAN CITY, Feb. 23 (PNA) — Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman asked beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) to use the cash grant for its purpose to ensure continuity of assistance from the national government.

Soliman said that with calls from critics to scrap the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program, beneficiaries should prove to the public that the program has changed their lives.

“Do you want the program to continue? It’s all in your hands now by showing to critics that 4Ps really works,” Soliman told a throng of 1,500 4Ps beneficiaries during today’s CSO (civil society organization) led fora at the city’s convention center here.

The cabinet official warned beneficiaries of using the cash grant for drinking spree and gambling instead of financing education and healthcare of families.

Lilia Advincula, 42, a beneficiary from Calvary Hill, Tacloban confirmed that some recipients use the money for vices.

“Every time I got the money, I told my husband that he’s not included in the budget since these are for our children. Mothers, you have to be brave enough to control the spending!” Advincula told beneficiaries

Soliman asked beneficiaries to make their fellow recipients accountable on how they use the grant. “You have to show to critics that this program is lifting you from poverty and its worth spending for on the part of the government,” she added.

For 2015, 4Ps has a budget of Php62.3 billion for the provision of conditional cash grants to extremely 4.3 million poor families.

The program is a human development measure of the national government that provides conditional cash grants to the poorest of the poor, to improve the health, nutrition, and the education of children aged 0-18.

The program is investing in the health and education of poor children through programs such as health check-ups for pregnant women and children aged 0 to 5; deworming of schoolchildren aged 6 to 14; enrollment of children in daycare, elementary, and secondary schools; and family development sessions.

The 4Ps has two types of cash grants that are given out to household-beneficiaries – Php500 per household every month for healthcare and Php300 per child every month for ten months for education. (PNA)