In its effort to accelerate the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) in the province by improving the delivery of service and assistance to the poor, the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN) has been recognized by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in its very first Gawad Listahanan Awards held on January 29, 2015.
Gawad Listahanan or Data Utilization Awards is conferred by the DSWD to local government units (LGUs) that have registered the most number of beneficiaries of their locally-funded programs in the Listahanan database of poor families through the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR).
NHTS-PR is an information management system that makes available to national government agencies and other social protection stakeholders a database of poor families as reference in identifying potential beneficiaries of social protection programs and services.
Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) Head Corazon Lilian Rin personally received a plaque of appreciation and a cash incentive of P50,000.00 handed by DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman.
Rin said Gov. Imee Marcos has personally discussed a Memorandum of Agreement with the DSWD Central Office regarding the use of the NHTS-PR.
“The NHTS-PR database was used by Gov. Marcos to identify the beneficiaries of MDG localization. These families were categorized into ‘poor,’ ‘middle poor’ and ‘get away poor.’ This was our basis for prioritizing the poorest families by providing them protective services such as medical and dental missions, granting animal dispersal and other services,” Rin added.
“Today we have quelled the growth in the poverty numbers, more importantly we have identified the different segments of the poor here in Ilocos Norte, particularly identifying the breakthrough poor—the poor who have in their power the skill and the ability and the commitment to break out of poverty through their own efforts with just a little help from the public sector. I am hopeful that the change in the poverty map will continue, having less in the coastal areas which we saw in 2010 and dwindling numbers in the interior upland zones,” Gov. Marcos said.
Model province in poverty reduction
According to Rin, DSWD Central Office has seen the significance of the NHTS-PR database in the improvement of the people’s lives in Ilocos Norte.
Since 2010, Gov. Marcos has committed in achieving the primary goals of MDG, the United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) worldwide initiative to eliminate extreme poverty and promote global partnership for development.
With the localization of the MDG in the province, the overall poverty incidence was trimmed down from 12.2% in 2009 into 9% in 2013.
Recognizing this major achievement, Secretary Soliman has cited Ilocos Norte as the model champion in poverty reduction in Region 1 last year.
In her State of the Province Address on 2013, Gov. Marcos also highlighted Ilocos Norte’s milestone in becoming one of the least poor provinces in the entire country.
“Indeed, today Ilocos Norte is one of the few provinces in the country noted to achieve the MDG goal of halving poverty by the year 2015, making us now a middle-income economy, one of the least poor provinces in the country, ranking in the top 10 percentile of the human development ratings in the whole archipelago,” she said.—Jennifer T. Pambid, PGIN-CMO