With Republic Act No. 11310, also known as the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) Act, the continuity and sustainability of the program is now assured. The law makes the program more robust by prioritizing farmers and fisher folks; strengthening livelihood and employment opportunities for beneficiaries; ensuring civil society organizations’ seats in the advising councils; and providing automatic coverage to Philhealth.
This is a realization of the long-time clamor of beneficiaries to make the program permanent. It can be recalled that beneficiaries have continuously expressed apprehensions that the benefits they are receiving from 4Ps might be stopped if the program will not be institutionalized.
“Sigurado na po na ako ay makakapagtapos. Panatag na rin po ang loob ng aking mga magulang na tuloy-tuloy na po ang mga matatanggap na cash grants para sa dagdag na pantustos sa aking pag-aaral. Kaya, ako po ngayon ay ginanahang bumalik sa pag-aaral (I am now sure that I will graduate. My parents are now also assured of continuously receiving cash grants to augment my school needs. That is why I am now motivated to go back to school),” shared Lailanie C. Esperanza, 19, Grade 11 student. Lailanie admitted that she left school for two years because she was badly influenced by her friends. Despite the encouragement of her parents, she still did not go back to school. She added that she struggled in gaining back the trust of her parents to send her again to school.
“Hindi ko na sasayangin pa ang pagkakataon ngayon na bumalik na po ako sa pag-aaral dahil gusto ko na ako naman ang tutulong sa aking pamilya kapag ako ay may trabaho na sa larangan ng Information Technology(Now that I am back in school, I will no longer waste this chance because I want to help my family when I will land a job in the field of Information Technology),” Lailanie added.
According to Mr. Alfredo Galanno, Jr., Senior High School Principal of Bayambang National High School in Bayambang, Pangasinan, the CCT Law will help them to inspire their students to continue schooling and will lessen drop out cases especially in Senior High School. As a reminder to the students he said, “Unahin ang pag-aaral at hindi ang pagtatrabaho dahil kapag nakapagtapos na kayo ng pag-aaral, mas maraming mga oportunidad ang naghihintay para sa inyo (Prioritize your studies over work because when you graduate, there will be more opportunities waiting for you).”
Pastor Noralyn P. Imbat of the Lord of the Harvest Ministries in Batac City, Ilocos Norte also shared, “Ito na ang pinakamabuting hakbang na ginawa ng gobyerno para sa ating bansa – ang pagtulong sa mga mahihirap na pamilya, dahil ang bansa ay nasasalamin sa kalagayan ng bawat pamilyang pilipino. Ang pag-angat ng mga mahihirap na pamilya ay pag-angat ng buong bansa (This is the best step that the government has done for our country – helping the poor families, because the quality of life of every Filipino family is a reflection of the country. The improvement of poor families is development of our country).” (by: Jaesem Ryan A. Gaces, Information Officer II/Pantawid Pamilya)