GENERAL SANTOS CITY – The  Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office XII (DSWD FO XII) reached out to a group of boxers and its trainers in this city affected by the COVID-19 crisis, providing them financial and relief assistance over the weekend.   

Sunday’s event held at the General Santos City’s oval court was an initiative of Sen. Bong Go, Senate’s Sports Committee chairman, who also provided ten bicycles and additional food packs.

“As chairman of Senate Committee on Sports, we will respond and provide support to our athletes not to suffer the effects of the current crisis,” Senator Go said via zoom.

“National athletes and coaches have also been greatly affected by the adverse impact of the pandemic. I am extremely grateful that this measure includes the welfare of our modern-day heroes who bring pride, honor and glory to our nation in the field of sports,” Sen. Go added.

DSWD Assistant Secretary Jade C. Jamolod, regional Director Cezario Joel Espejo, assistant regional director Bonifacio Selma, and Games and Amusement Board chairman Abraham Kahlil B. Mitra, led the distribution of P5,000 cash and box of relief assistance to each of the 166 boxers in the region who were struggling to recover from the effects of COVID-19 pandemic.

In his message, Asec. Jamolod has assured the public of the government’s continuing support to vulnerable groups of people in the society.

“Our department is closely working with local officials in aiding the recovery efforts. More help is on the way,” Jamolod said.

“We are grateful for the DSWD for answering the call of GAB leadership to extend help to our active licensed boxers in General Santos City,” Mitra said.

One of the recipients, Teodoro Denonong, 45, thanked the government for looking into their immediate needs.

“I will keep the money for future emergency needs,” Denonong said after he received the financial assistance.   

The intervention provided was through the agency’s Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS), a program that serves as a social safety net or a stop-gap measure to support the recovery of individuals and families suffering from unexpected life events or crisis.

Under AICS, the agency provides medical, educational, burial, transportation and food assistance to persons in crisis situations, specifically those belonging to the informal sector and other poor, marginalized, vulnerable, and disadvantaged individuals.

“We in the department will not stop in providing assistance to people in need…not only the boxers but all those needing assistance. Our social workers are working 24/7 to attend to the needs of the people,” Dir. Espejo said.   (JBM / DSWD)