ISULAN, Sultan Kudarat—The Department of Social Welfare and Development in Region XII has turned over recently the first batch of completed community infrastructure projects in the region under the government’s Grassroots Planning and Budgeting Process initiative, an agency official said Monday.

Regional Project Coordinator for Kalahi-CIDSS, Emerita Q. Dizon said that five villages of Isulan town are now benefiting the four newly constructed and one refurbished daycare centers amounting to P2.5 million.

“These projects were identified priority needs of the local government unit with the help of grassroots organizations in the community, submitted to the agency for funding,” Dizon said.

Community projects are located in the villages of Kudanding, Lagandang, Laguilayan, Sampao and Kalawag I, where teachers and learners have endured the absence or lack of permanent classroom, leaving them with no choice but to utilize old, dilapidated and congested buildings available.

Annie Marcos, 34, a daycare teacher in Sitio Kimondo, Lagandang said that the new building is a relief to the community, especially to her as a teacher. Every school year, she said, that they keep on transferring from one vacant space to another just to conduct classes.

“We first utilized an abandon old house, then in the building with the noisy rice mill and then in the barangay bagsakan which we shared with animals, making me worry everyday about the security and safety of my learners,” Marcos said. “Classes were always disrupted,” she added.

Meanwhile, Isulan MSWD Officer Cecilia Gampong said that the projects are of great help in line with the efforts of the government to improve facility and quality education in early childhood care and development (ECCD) program.

“These are projects that are according to standard set by the government, providing our young children with classrooms that stimulate learning, safe and secure gearing towards for the attainment of quality education,” Gampong said.

These projects followed the community-driven development (CDD) scheme of one of the agency’s flagship poverty-reduction programs, Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS).

According to Dizon, the government has earmarked P38.69 million for the construction of various community social infrastructure projects and set to be turned over before second quarter of the year ends.

Other GPBP projects are implemented under the agency’s Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) for livelihood and entrepreneurial initiatives while other community-based social welfare and development projects are implemented under the agency’s Protective Services Unit, amounting to more than P53 million.

The GPBP, formerly known as Bottom-up Planning and Budgeting (BUB), is an approach in formulating budget proposal of national government agencies, taking into consideration the development needs of poor municipalities as identified in their respective Local Poverty Reduction Action Plan (LPRAP), formulated with strong participation with civil society organization. (HILBERT T. ESTACION, DSWD-12)