P20.3-M given to 13,563 indigent senior citizens in Region 1

VIGAN CITY, May 16 (PIA) — The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Region 1 through its Social Pension Program (SPP) released a total of P20,344,500 allowance to 13,563 indigent senior citizens in Region 1, covering the first quarter of the year.

DSWD Region 1 Information Officer Iryn Q. de los Reyes told Tuesday that each social pensioner received P1,500 or P500 pesos per month, as their stipend for the months of January to March to defray expenses for their daily needs particularly on food and medicines.

She said that under the leadership of DSWD Regional Director Marcelo Nicomedes J. Castillo, the release of this stipend covering 121 municipalities was completed in a span of 17 days, maximizing regular staff assigned to distribute the stipend.

However, there are 185 social pensioners who were not able to attend the scheduled release due to unavoidable circumstances and health conditions.

With this, the Regional Social Pension Unit had already coordinated with concerned workers at the LGUs to inform the unpaid pensioners and re-schedule the release of their stipend.

In some cases, DSWD and LGU Social Workers pay home visits to bedridden and frail senior citizens for the release of stipend.

She noted that the indigent senior citizens covered in this program are those 77 years old and above, frail, sickly and with disability, without any regular source of income and/or support from any member of the family, not receiving other pension benefits from the government and private agencies, and listed in the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction of the DSWD.

As an update, she said that relatives of deceased senior citizens can still claim the stipend even if the latter died earlier than the cut-off date (every 25th of the month). Previously, the stipend of deceased pensioners can only be claimed if the social pensioner died on or beyond cut-off date. (ANL/FGL-PIA 1 Ilocos Sur with reports from DSWD Region 1 office)

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