Aid seekers swamp BARMM social welfare office by mistake
ILIGAN CITY, Lanao del Norte, Philippines — The Ministry of Social Services and Development (MSSD) of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has told parents and students in the region to apply for its own educational assistance in the region rather than seek a payout of the aid given by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
The MSSD made the clarification after its provincial field office in Maguindanao province was swamped by aid seekers on Saturday demanding the DSWD’s educational assistance.
The MSSD clarified in a statement on Monday that it was not involved in the distribution of the DSWD education aid ordered by Social Welfare Secretary Erwin Tulfo.
However, BARMM Social Welfare Minister Raissa Jajurie told the Inquirer that the MSSD stands ready to help the DSWD reach its intended beneficiaries if the agency’s help is requested.
The MSSD said its own education assistance program is called the “Angat Bangsamoro: Kabataan Tungo sa Karunungan” (ABaKa) and targets those from indigent families. But those who are enrolled in the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps of the DSWD are not eligible for aid under ABaKa.
Ongoing since 2020, the program is funded through the regular budget of the BARMM which, in turn, largely comes from its block grant from the national government.
The program gives priority to those who come from vulnerable and low-income families, working students, enrollees in state-run schools, enrollees in private schools on a tuition scholarship due to financial inability, members of a household affected by armed conflict and calamity and those deported into the country.
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