DSWD and UNICEF to provide unconditional cash assistance to 22,000 typhoon-vulnerable families in Catanduanes, N. Samar – Manila Bulletin

Sealing the DSWD-UNICEF partnership on the provision of unconditional cash transfers under the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund for Advance Action for Foreseeable Risks are (left to right) DSWD Under-Secretary Felicisimo C. Budiongan, UNICEF Deputy Representatives for Programs Behzad Noubary, Landbank Marilou L. Villafranca, Senior Vice President, and UNICEF Social Policy Officer. Anjanette Saguisag. (DSWD)

On June 14, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) agreed to provide multipurpose and unconditional cash transfers to some 22,000 families in towns vulnerable to the typhoon. from Catanduanes and northern Samar.

Under the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for Anticipatory Action (AA) for foreseeable risks, an unconditional cash supplement will be provided to approximately 22,000 beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino (4Ps) program ), including 42,239 children, in the municipalities of Baras, Bato, San Andres and Virac in the province of Catanduanes, and the municipalities of Catarman, Catubig, Gamay, Mondragon and San Roque in northern Samar.

Assistance will be provided three days before the arrival of a category 4 typhoon, in accordance with the principles of anticipatory action.

Each family will receive 1,000 pesos per family, calculated as 30% of the children’s estimated minimum expenditure basket for nutrition, education, water, sanitation and hygiene, and child protection services .

Cash assistance will be provided to 4P beneficiaries through the Land Bank of the Philippines, the government’s depository bank.

In addition to complementary cash assistance, UNICEF will also pilot the provision of anticipatory multi-purpose cash transfers using existing national social protection systems to mitigate the impact of disasters and generate evidence to help shape the DSWD policies that strengthen national social protection. systems for future humanitarian and disaster response.

DSWD said the partnership is the product of the Philippine UN Humanitarian Country Team’s development of a fit-for-purpose framework framed by existing operational coordination mechanisms and response plans, and based on lessons learned and good practices from past typhoon preparedness and responses.

UNICEF Deputy Representative in the Philippines, Behzad Noubary, stressed the importance and urgency of partnership.

By providing support before a disaster strikes, CERF AA seeks to mitigate and, to some extent, prevent the impact of typhoons on people’s homes and livelihoods, while building on government mandatory preventative evacuation procedures that save lives.

“This is the first time that we will test the concept of anticipatory action through a shock-responsive social protection model. Thanks to this intervention, the communities most at risk will have better financial resources to bounce back from a typhoon. Traditional disaster response, when complemented with anticipatory actions, can significantly reduce the impact of disasters and enable faster recovery,” said Noubary.

DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito Bautista, in a statement read by Undersecretary Felicisimo Budiongan, said: “This anticipatory action pilot project is a good start to test the provision of multipurpose anticipatory cash transfers using the existing national government social protection systems, in particular through the provision of top-up to beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino programme.

“In addition, this pilot project can generate evidence to improve policies for strengthening social protection systems within the department. Again, congratulations to all of you who participated in the benchmarking of anticipatory action in government systems,” said Bautista.

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