Official Publication of the Philippine Information Agency Bicol Regional Office, in cooperation with the RIAC-REDIRAS - RDC Bicol

Thursday, April 28, 2016

DSWD proposes establishtment of “Bahay Pag-Asa” in all local governments of Bicol

By Julius Embile

Legazpi City, Apr 28 (PIA)  – In the wake of increasing number of ‘children in conflict with the law’ (CICL) in the Bicol region, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Regional Juvenile Justice and Welfare Committee (RJJWC) are now urging the local governments of Bicol to establish a “Bahay Pag-Asa” in their respective communities.

“DSWD urges the local governments for the establishment of Bahay Pag-Asa in their localities in reference to Republic Act (RA) 9344 and amended by RA 10630, mandating operations of ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’ in every province and highly urbanized city.”, stated DSWD Bicol assistant regional director for administration Victoria Tagum.

The ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’ is a 24-hour child caring institution established, funded and managed by the local government units (LGU) and/or licensed non-government outfits (NGO). To date, there are twenty-one ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’ in nine regions across the country.

Its purpose is to provide short-term residential care for CICL’s between fifteen and eighteen years of age, while waiting for court disposition of their cases or transfer to other agencies. It is also a place where these youths, especially those below the criminal responsibility, are given necessary intensive interventions.

The establishments of ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’ also have the legislative backing.

Last April 21, DSWD and RJJWC held an orientation in Legazpi City, with the Provincial and City Social Welfare Officers, Budget Officers, and their committee members within Bicol, to discuss the guidelines on the operation of ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’.

The ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’ institutions have been given a nationwide budget of Php 400 million, and Php 5 million is to be allocated to the Bicol region. However, the program requires staffing and man-power composed of social workers, psychologists, medical doctors, nurses, and houseparent.

The provinces of Albay, Camarines Norte and Camarines Sur have been recommended to be prioritized for the said program due to high CICL incidences, as per the Social Welfare Office and RJJWC. Though there is already an existing Comprehensive Intervention Social Juvenile Program Plan in Naga City, the province is still in-need of the ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’, according to situational reports submitted to DSWD.

DSWD stated that they will continue their efforts in pursuing ‘Bahay Pag-Asa’s realization. The department also affirmed that more orientations and meetings will be held for this program after the National Elections this May.  (MAL/LBE-PIA5)

- See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/article/view/3241461808914/dswd-proposes-establishtment-of-bahay-pag-asa-in-all-local-governments-of-bicol#sthash.wR7qkmSp.dpuf

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