TUGUEGARAO CITY, Cagayan, Oct. 23 (PIA) - - A total of 1,258 beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) in the Cagayan Valley Region have voluntarily waved their cash grants after successfully passing the survival and subsistence living status into self-sufficient.
Regional Director Fernando De Villa Jr. said the former beneficiaries were among the 108, 051 total grantees in the region who opted to wave their membership to give chances to other poor non-4Ps families to be included in the government poverty alleviation program.
De Villa said most of the families who waved their memberships were assessed to reach the self-sufficient living status after being granted with livelihood programs which are now their sources of income.
"The lives of these beneficiaries are the testimonies of how beneficial the Pantawid Pamilya program is for human development. This proves that the program is not dole-out," De Villa said.
Marites Martinez of this city, in her testimony, said she voluntarily waved her benefits as she is now engaged into furniture business and believed that through her business, she could already send her children to school even without the cash grants from 4Ps.
"We are really very poor before. My husband and I don't have stable job but with the assistance of the government through 4Ps, we survived and we strived hard until we were able to establish our small business," Martinez said.
For his part, Arthur Fortez of Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya shared there was a point in his life when his children questioned him of his ability to send them to school.
With teary eyes he narrated, "It really hurts when your children will tell you that they will stop because you don't have the capacity to give their needs in school. But with the help of 4Ps, my two elder children have successfully finished their studies and they are now employed. I still have one child in school but I already waved my membership because my two elder sons are helping me sustain the studies of my youngest child," Fortez said.
Monica Pastor, a farmer from Cabarroguis, Quirino, also shared how the program have helped her to send her children in school. With the perseverance of her daughters, Monica takes pride that one of her daughters is now a medical doctor serving as a "doctor to the barrio" in Isabela province and the other one is now an Overseas Filipino Worker.
"I really acknowledge that 4Ps program played a vital role to the success of my children. And they were the ones who encouraged me to withdraw as 4Ps beneficiary so that the benefits will be shared to those who deserve of the cash grants," Pastor said.
On her part, Laila Rabago of City of Ilagan acknowledged that they learned a lot from being a member of the program.
"4Ps did not only help us financially, it also educated us in many aspects of life, especially during our family development sessions which led to the improvement of our way of living," Rabago shared.
Director De villa urged other members to strive hard to improve their living status too and make the successful 4Ps beneficiaries as their role model to be one of the successful 4Ps beneficiaries someday. (MDCT/OTB/PIA 2-Cagayan)