DSWD launches 5-year sustainable livelihood program

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 26) — The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) on Friday launched an improved Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP), which features a five-year livelihood sustainability plan for beneficiaries.

It aims to build sustainable livelihoods through “accessing and acquiring skills and assets.”

In the first year of the program, SLP participants may be provided with an initial grant of ₱10,000 to ₱15,000 each to jumpstart their business.

In their second year, participants may be extended an additional ₱100,000 grant if they are able to maintain their business and achieve good indicators, including in gross sales and net income.

During their third and fourth year in the SLP, beneficiaries will be given technical assistance to expand their business operations and processes, and will participate in the Ugnayan Forum.

In the final year of the program, participants may again receive a grant of up to ₱250,000 if they achieve mainstreaming status.

Eligible beneficiaries should belong to the “poor, marginalized, vulnerable, and/or disadvantaged households,” according to the DSWD.

Social Welfare Secretary Rex Gatchalian said they may coordinate with DSWD Field Offices to participate.

Gatchalian added that with the height of the COVID-19 pandemic over, it is time to focus on breaking the cycle of poverty and “making sure that not only do we give people a chance to fish but rather we teach them how to fish.”

Meanwhile, SM Supermalls expressed continued support to DSWD programs, especially on providing avenues to showcase products of SLP participants.

“Today we also sign the memorandum of agreement with the DSWD that will expand our government services, [make] nationwide DSWD programs and services more accessible to Filipinos through satellite services in our malls starting with 21 locations,” SM Supermalls President Steven Tan said.

The SLP was initially launched in 2011 as the Self-Employment Assistance Kaunlaran program of the DSWD.