QUEZON CITY, July 14, 2020 – The Human Development and Poverty Reduction Cluster (HDPRC) recognized the Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) Program of the Department of Agriculture (DA) during the first leg of Pamana ng Pagbabago 2021: Pre-State of the Nation (SONA) Forum today at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Manila.
Cabinet Secretary Carlo Alexei Nograles said the forum is important to publicize the specific and multiple accomplishments of President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration before the actual SONA on July 26.
DA-SAAD Program is one of the government services that was prominently featured under HDPRC’s Social Protection Sub-cluster.
Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Rolando Bautista reported the SAAD Program provided 2,193 agriculture and fishery livelihood production projects to 71,350 individuals and 3,329 groups.
The figures represented 22 of the 30 SAAD provinces under HDPRC which are Agusan del Sur, Apayao, Bukidnon, Catanduanes, Eastern Samar, Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Leyte, Maguindanao, Masbate, Negros Occidental, Negros Oriental, Cotabato, Northern Samar, [Western] Samar, Sarangani, Siquijor, Sorsogon, Sultan Kudarat, Sulu, Surigao del Sur, and Zamboanga del Norte.
In a video, SAAD beneficiary Ms. Visitacion Marientes from Leyte attested to the program’s positive effects on her family and the whole community, especially the women.
She said, “Ang programa ng SAAD ay nakapagbigay ng pagpapahalaga sa mga kababaihan… ‘Yan ang nais ng gobyerno, para yung isang pamilya ay dahan-dahang umasenso. Hindi parating nasa baba.”
She also shared the roles of the husbands and wives in sustaining the oyster production provided to them to have food security and income.
Also showcased in the forum were the successes of the administration’s programs, projects, and policies from 2016 to 2021 such as the decline in poverty from 23.5% in 2015 to 16.7% in 2018.
The unemployment rate also decreased from 6.3% in 2015 to 4.5% in 2018, in which 6 billion Filipinos were lifted from the poverty line.
In addition, the current administration released a total of Php 2.76 trillion in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The forum, accessible at https://bit.ly/3r6ISe0, was hosted by Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar. ###
Writer: Ian Kevin M. Sevilla, PME Officer for Special Concerns, SAAD-NPMO