The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD-VI) has accounted a total of P795,357,000 in releases to the indigent elderly or senior citizens qualified beneficiary under the under social pension while the nation continue to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
The subsidy has reached the hands of 265,119 beneficiaries out of the 365,908 target this year.
From that data, around 100,789 more are on the process of receiving the crucial subsidy as distribution of the pension is ongoing in various LGUs across the region.
The social pension is DSWD’s regular program. It is embodied in Republic Act No. 9994 or the “Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010” – a commitment of the state for the protection of members of the elderly sector or senior citizens who are frail, sickly, with a disability, and without a pension or permanent source of income, compensation or financial assistance from their relatives to support their basic needs.
Hence, “the social pension is a rights-based grant as provided by RA 9994 for senior citizens,” emphasized DSWD-VI regional director Ma. Evelyn B. Macapobre.
Under the social pension program, a qualified beneficiary receives a monthly stipend of P500 which is being released per semester at P3,000 or a total of P6,000 per year.
The amount received by the beneficiaries as of May 18, 2020 covers the first semester this year or from January to June 2020. The provinces whose beneficiaries have received social pension are the following:
- Aklan – 39,836,
- Antique – 31,744,
- Capiz – 45,358,
- Guimaras – 13,461,
- Negros Occidental – 24,140, and
- Iloilo – 110,580.
“While SAP caters to families, Social Pension provides for our indigent senior citizens,” said Macapobre.
She explained, however, that a social pensioner, who serves as the head of the family, is still qualified to receive the agency’s social amelioration program (SAP) assistance.
“Our indigent seniors are still qualified to receive SAP on top of their pension as a matter of right,” she underscored, “as such the senior citizens who were not able to receive a SAP subsidy still has a social pension in these times of a crisis.”
Similar with other subsidies for the vulnerable sector that passes through the agency, like SAP for instance, the social pension goes to its beneficiaries through the help of Local Government Units for orderly and speedy distribution during the community quarantine.