Anti-poverty drive for Davao Sur pushed

DIGOS CITY, Davao del Sur – Being identified as one of the poorest provinces in the country for 2013, Department of Agriculture (DA) 11 convened the private sectors and national agencies to figure out solutions to combat poverty here.

The local government units noted to have greater poverty incidences were Digos City, Hagonoy and Magsaysay.

Aside from the poverty incidences, it was noted that the province has also various challenges on limited access and inadequate provision of basic social services, peace and order, inadequacy of basic infrastructure facilities and utilities and hazards and vulnerabilities.

One of the programs of the government to answer this concern is the Accelerated and Sustainable Anti-Poverty Program (ASAPP). It is an inter-agency effort that seeks to reduce poverty by creating sustainable employment and income-generating opportunities for the poor.

For the part of DA, Regional Director Remelyn R. Recoter urged the agencies to identify and rationalize strategies on how to address or uplift poverty thru their respective menu of interventions.

“We can help them by employing local residents who are identified as poor in the area,” Recoter said, adding that, “the LGU should identify and prioritize activities on the ground.”

For DA alone, it allocated a total of P223.6 million worth of projects enrolled under ASAPP wherein P174.9 million will be used for Magsaysay, P30.2 million for Digos City and P18.5 million for Hagonoy.

“The poor households has an urgent need of our services. With this, we will be able to address the worsening poverty they experienced,” Recoter explained.

During the recently concluded consultation here, the different national agencies and private sectors have also committed to help the province through their programs such as health care services, conditional cash transfer, sustainable livelihood, scholarships, trainings and technical support.

Recoter also urged the private and social enterprises to be the “direct” employer of the poor and tapped the poor as source of labor and non-labor inputs.

ASAPP is implemented by the Human Development and Poverty Reduction Cluster (HDPRC) which is composed of 26 agencies working towards improving the overall quality of life of poor families by translating the gains of good governance into direct, immediate, and substantial benefits that will empower them.