I. Program Overview
The Home for Girls of the Department of Social Welfare and Development is primarily a residential treatment facility for girl children aged 7 to below 18 years old who have been removed from their families due to sexual abuse or exploitation and have been taken custody by the state. Children clients of the Home are referred by the Police, Government and Non-Government Organizations, Local Government Units, family of the victims or concerned citizens.
However, as the need arises, the Center also considers children who are victims of other forms of abuse such as physical and psychological and the Children in Situations of Armed Conflict, Victims of Child Labor, Trafficked Children and the like in consideration to the lack of child agencies in the regions.
The Home offers a continuum of center-based (residential) services or twenty-four (24) hour group care services under the guidance of trained staff within a structured therapeutic environment geared towards clients’ rehabilitation. This includes workforce of social workers, psychologists, teachers, houseparents and medical professionals who involve children clients in creating a nurturing environment wherein trust, self-esteem and healing can take root and grow. The comprehensive program of treatment and rehabilitation includes psychotherapy techniques through formal and informal education, music, arts, social interaction, spiritual and recreational activities. Children clients stay at the Home from six (6) months to one year before they are moved to a foster family or when they are ready to return to parents, nearest relatives or legal guardians/foster family.
B. Vision, Mission, Goals and Objectives
We envision a society where girl children thrive best in an environment that provides structure, nurturance, consistency, safety and opportunities to realize their rights and full potentials as productive individuals. Towards this end, the Home for Girls will become an innovative leader in building a client centered environment of healing, rehabilitation and empowerment of disadvantaged girl children.
Pinapangarap naming ang isang lipunan kung saan ang mga batang babae ay maunlad at nauukulan ng suporta, kalinga, kaligtasan, at oportunidad upang mapangalagaan ang kanilang mga karapatan at maisakatuparan ang kanilang kakayanan bilang mga produktibong mamamayan. Tungo rito, ang Home for Girls ay magiging isang makabagong pinuno na bubuo ng makataong kapaligiran tungo sa paghilom, pagsasaayos, at pagsasakapangyarihan sa mga batang babae na naging biktima ng pang-aabuso.
The Home for Girls is mandated to provide protective custody and temporary shelter for the restoration of psychosocial functioning and building capacities of girl children through individualized and strength based interventions in collaboration with partners/stakeholders.
Ang Home for Girls ay nabuo upang magbigay proteksyon at magsilbing pansamantalang tahanan para sa panunumbalik ng sikososyal na kapasidad ng mga batang babae at upang mapaigting ang kanilang kakayanan sa pamamagitan ng mga tulong na batay sa indibidwal na pagkakakilanlan at kalakasan katuwang ang iba’t-ibang sangay ng lipunan.
- Ensure sufficient resources for the provision of programs and services based on needs of the clients.
- Effective delivery of rehabilitation programs and services to clients and their families towards recovery form trauma and eventual reintegration.
- Strengthen a community network of high performing pro-active and supportive partners.
- Lead in the promotion of equality and child rights through active advocacy to stop all forms of child abuse.
To provide protection and rehabilitation services to children victims of sexual abuse and exploitation to facilitate their early recovery and reintegration to their families and community.
- To provide temporary shelter to children who cannot remain in their own homes due to risk of further abuse;
- To provide special protection to girl-children from further abuse, exploitation, neglect and other conditions and provision of appropriate individual treatment program to address behavioral problems;
- To engage the child’s participation in the rehabilitation from the trauma of the abuse, in her healing and recovery;
- To provide opportunity to development in all aspects of girl- child personality;
- To encourage the LSWDO participation and child’s family in deciding on the best alternative placement after her discharge in the Center; and
- To provide the child other support services such as skills training, education, livelihood activities and the like in preparation for reintegration in the community.
C. Legal Bases
Declaration of Policy states the following principles:
1. Republic Act No. 7610 entitled, “An Act Providing for Stronger Deterrence and Special Protection Against Child Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination” on 22 July 1991, states that:
- The State shall intervene on behalf of the child when the parents, guardian, teacher or person having custody of the child is unable to protect the child against abuse, exploitation and discrimination or when such acts aganst the child are committed by the said parent, guardian, teacher or person having care and custody of the same. (Sec.2, Art. 1)
- It is the Policy of the State to protect and rehabilitate children gravely threatened or endangered by circumstance which affect or will affect their survival and normal development and over which they have no control. Every effort shall be exerted to promote the welfare of children to enhance their opportunities for a useful and a happy life.
- The offended party shall immediately be placed under the custody of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) pursuant to Executive Order No.56, Series of 1986. In the regular performance of this function, the officer of the DSWD shall be free from any administrative, civil or criminal liability. Custody proceedings shall be in accordance with provisions of Presidential Decree No. 603 or the “The Child and Youth Welfare Code”. (Sec. 28, Art. XI)
2. R.A 7610 also mandates the formulation of a comprehensive program for the protection of children against any form of abuse, which endanger child survival and normal development.
3. The Philippines as a state party to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, has the legal obligation to implement the following related provisions on special protection:
Article 19 a. State Parties shall take all appropriate legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to protect the child from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation including sexual abuse, while in the care of parent(s), legal guardian(s) or any other person who has the care of the child.
Article 34. State Parties shall undertake to protect the child from all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. For these purposes, the inducement or coercion of a child to engage in any unlawful sexual activity and exploitive use of children in pornographic performances and materials.
Article 36. State parties shall protect the child against all other forms of exploitation prejudicial to any aspects of child welfare.
4. Republic Act 9775 or An Act Defining and Penalizing the crime of Pornography, Prescribing Penalties therefore and other Purposes. Section 2 (b) states that the State shall protect every child from all form of exploitation and abuse including but not limited to 1) the use of a child in pornographic materials and 2) inducement or coercion of a child to engage or be involved in pornography through whatever means.
5. PPG Memorandum Circular No. 1 series of 2012 or the Child and Youth Protection Policy and Guidelines in Residential Care Facilities Section 3 describes that appropriate mechanisms are installed to ensure that children in DSWD residential care facilities are safe and protected from any forms of abuse, maltreatment, exploitation and violence.Center states the provision of immediate interventions to a child below 18 years of age or over but is unable to fully protect herself from abuse, neglect, cruelty, exploitation or discrimination because of a physical or mental disability or condition. These services are preventive and rehabilitative in nature and can either be community or center-based/residential care.
A. Program Processes
- Preparation of Program Plan
The HFG’s program plan is anchored on its own Vision, Mission, and Goals (VMG) which rooted from the DSWD’s regularly updated VMG, strategic goals (SGs) and organizational outcome (OO) that are achieved through the Agency’s major outputs.
As a residential care facility, the HFG is under OO2: “Rights of the Vulnerable Sectors Promoted and Protected” and its output is delivered through Protective Social Welfare Program.
Though the HFG’s programs and services are already established based on its mandate, improvements are continuously explored along strategies in the delivery of its services.
Programs/Projects/Activities (PPAs) supportive to the attainment of the HFG’s VMG are identified through SWOT analysis to ensure issues-based planning. Through the conduct of budget proposal workshops and annual Work and Financial Planning initiated by the Field Office, said PPAs are prioritized according to the emerging needs of the residential care facility.
2. Identification of Program Funds
Funds for the operation of the HFG comes from direct release funds of the DSWD Field Office I and Centrally Managed Fund of the DSWD (subject to availability).
3. Collaboration and Networking
Over time, the HFG recognizes the combined benefits of collaboration and networking with other Social Welfare and Development Agencies (SWDAs). Working with other Organizations either through informal networks or more formal partnerships can provide greater efficiency and less duplicated efforts insofar as delivery of services is concerned.
In the case of the HFG, the partnership developed with other SWDAs has not only brought access to additional financial resources (donation in cash) but has likewise opened the opportunity to holistic approach to meeting clients’ needs, with better and more efficient access to the range of services required, improved quality and consistency of service as well as greater responsiveness to the needs.
Various development assistance from donors or development partners are helpful in maximizing the regular budget/fund for centers and residential care facilities (CRCFs) because fund allocation can be realigned to other significant programs/projects/activities that will benefit the clients hence, optimizing grants to support the HFG’s priority protective services/activities. Partners are encouraged to enter into a Memorandum of Agreement with the HFG not only to formalize the partnership but to have a clearer understanding of the established collaborative relationship and agreements.
The HFG constantly endeavors to strengthen collaboration with partners through reinforcing ‘transparency efforts’ that would result to encouraging more partners who could be of help in the implementation of programs and services to its clientele.
Programs and Services
While the Home provides temporary shelter and protective custody for children from abusive and exploitative parents and environments and threats endangering their safety and security, Comprehensive Programs and Services were formulated to address /help resolve traumatic experiences as a result of abusive experiences. There is a need to modify their behaviors and address emotional problems that interferes with their normal development and functioning, through group and individualized therapeutic care.
Hereunder is a summary of the services provided by the HFG which will be discussed in more details under the Helping Interventions:
- Protection Programs and Services/Social Services- this refers to services designed to reduce vulnerability and diminish child’s exposure to risks. It is where case management as a service delivery system enters. It is the core service of all the services provided in the center headed by the Case Manager/Social Worker. These are interventions that seek to restore/develop social functioning of center residents from admission to discharge and preparation for family reunification, community reintegration and alternative family placement if deemed identified.
- Home Life Services/Group Living Activities – is the provision of basic needs such as food, clothing, and shelter giving equal emphasis on the development of values and appropriate skills.
- Psychosocial Services- services which aims to address the ongoing psychological and social needs of the children which may include but not limited to in-depth assessment and evaluation of the child’s personality, intellect and behavior using psychological testing towards restoration of her social functioning.
- Legal and Paralegal Services- refers to the provision of legal assistance to children thru the DSWD retainer lawyer or thru referrals in case a child files a case court against her perpetrator.
- Capability and Empowerment Services- these focuses on assisting the child understand the nature, dynamics and social roots of child violence, children’s human rights, assertiveness exercises, practicing non-violence and protective behavior to prevent re-victimization. Also part of the capability services is providing formal education and/or functional literacy to children.
- Skills and Livelihood Trainings- provision of opportunities to acquire livelihood skills and vocational craft which they can utilize once reintegrated
- Moral and Spiritual Services- involves activities that deepen spiritual faith of the children, encourage personal growth, and strengthen relationship with others.
- AICS – this refers to range of services such as immediate rescue, direct financial and material assistance given to children and their families.
- Referral Services- children are referred to other agencies for assistance/services not provided by the agency
III. Target Beneficiaries
The Home for Girls of the Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office I is primarily a residential care facility for girl children aged 7 to below 18 years old who were removed from their families due to sexual abuse or exploitation and were taken custody by the State. Children clients of the Home are referrals from the Police, Government and Non-Government Organizations, Local Government Units, Family of the Victims or Concerned Citizens.
- Sexually Abused
- Victims of Lascivious Conduct
- Exploited Children
- Other Child-at-risk cases
Girl-children not eligible for admission:
- Children with severe infectious diseases that may endanger other residents;
- Children who are manifesting or are suffering from psychotic behavior, bizarre perceptions and/or other categories of personality disorder. However, efforts should be exerted to refer such cases to a psychiatrist or to a mental institution for appropriate treatment; and
- Children who are recovered mental patients due to recurring nature of the mental illness which requires sensitivity of care and close supervision by family members and mental health professionals.
Geographical Coverage of Operation
The Home for Girls shall cater but not limited to girl-children victims of the four (4) provinces (Pangasinan, La Union, Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte) of Region 1. It shall also serve non-residents of Region 1 but abuse committed to them is in the area specified above and who will be subsequently referred back to their respective hometown.
IV. Eligibility Requirements
Criteria for Admission
The Home for Girls shall admit female children aged 7 but below 18 years, who are in need of special protection as follows:
- Sexually Abused (Rape, Incest, Act of Lasciviousness)
- Sexually Exploited (Victims of Prostitution, Pornography, Cyber pornography, Pedophilia, Sexual Harassment)
- Physically Abused/Maltreated
- Psychologically/Emotionally Abused
- Illegal Recruitment
- Victims of Trafficking
- Other Child-at-risk cases (Abandoned, Neglected, Child Labor)
V. Documentary Requirements
All referrals made by LGUs, NGOs, and other organizations/entities should be accompanied with the following documents for assessment:
- Referral Letter/Initial Social Case Study Report;
- Medical Certificate-indicating among others relevant information such as vital signs like blood pressure, height and weight which may be necessary in providing intervention related to the child’s health and nutrition and result of pre-natal check- up, if pregnant;
- Birth Certificate or Baptismal Certificate.
Any or all of the following documents may be required depending on the circumstances of the case and the need for the following:
- School Record (Form 138 and/or Certificate of Good Moral Character)
- Court related documents (complaint-affidavit of the child filed in court, medico legal, and other court related documents);
- Police/Investigation Report from the Women and Children’s Desk (required especially when the child decides to file a case in court);
- Other requirements-psychological evaluation of a child who appear to be emotionally disturbed. The report shall serve as basis for the social worker to determine whether or not the center can provide appropriate help to the child, otherwise, she will be referred to a more appropriate center for institutionalization; and
- Latest picture (upon referral) whole body, 3R.
VI. Contact Person/s
SHIRLYN D. LAMSEN
Social Welfare Officer III / Center Head