Amid escalating impact of El Nino in the country, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) assured that it has sufficient funds to fulfill its mandate of providing resource augmentation to local government units (LGUs) that are affected by drought.
The assurance was made following the warning of Senator Ralph Recto that a national crisis looms unless the P3.9 billion Calamity Fund and P6.7 billion Quick Response Fund (QRF) are released to help several provinces affected by El Nino.
DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman clarified that the P6.7 billion QRF mentioned by Sen. Recto is not a QRF but was the amount proposed by DSWD for the implementation of Cash-for-Work and livelihood assistance for families affected by El Nino.
“What we have is the P1.32 billion QRF for 2016. The Department of Budget and Management has authorized the DSWD to utilize this amount to respond to El Nino requirements,” Sec. Soliman added.
In addition to the QRF, DSWD also draws funds from the Climate Change Adaption and Mitigation (CCAM) fund to augment its support to El Nino affected local government units (LGUs).
Of the P1.32 billion, DSWD has released P384,642,494.13, as of April 10, to cover the worth of assistance for El Nino affected families nationwide through the LGUs. The amount includes the cost of food assistance and the implementation of Cash-for-Work (CFW).
Another P447,320,350 is being processed for downloading to Region XII and ARMM.
Furthermore, the Department is helping other LGUs in assessing the extent of the drought especially in regions with areas that have been declared under a state of calamity.
“Along with the rest of the government, DSWD recognizes the urgency of responding to the situation of hunger affecting the poor in many parts of the country,” Sec. Soliman ended. # Source – www.dswd.gov.ph