Baguio City- The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through its Regional Offices urges the public to be more vigilant towards donation giving. This is after the discovery of an alleged fallacious solicitation activity in Thailand for typhoon Yolanda victims.

DSWD- Field Office Cordillera Regional Director Leonardo C. Reynoso said that the public should be reminded that fund raising for charitable and public welfare purposes is regulated by the law. “Although we encourage everybody to take part in giving to victims or to disadvantaged individuals, we also want the public to be cautious in supporting these fund drives”, Director Reynoso said.

Presidential Decree 1564 of 1978 also known as the Solicitation Permit Law states that “any person, corporation, organization, or association desiring to solicit or receive contributions for charitable or public welfare purposes shall first secure a permit from the Regional Offices of the Department of Social Services and Development…”. Moreover, DSWD Administrative Order No. 14 Series of 2007 or the omnibus rules and regulations on public solicitation and Administrative Order No. 18 Series of 2010 also known as Code of Ethics for Fund Raising were issued to regulate the practice of solicitation of voluntary contributions in the Philippines.

“Although the incident happened outside the country and it is not covered by our Law even if it involved Filipinos, it is still our responsibility to ensure that the situation of our underprivileged brothers and sisters are not being used for the advantage of only few individuals. “ Director Reynoso added.

As mandated, parties interested in fund raising for charitable and public welfare purposes should secure a solicitation permit from the DSWD Field Office or their respective Local Government Unit for activities involving only one city or municipality. Individuals who seek solicitation permit for their relatives who need medical and financial assistance should be coursed through a DSWD registered and licensed Social Welfare and Development Agency or the Crisis Intervention Unit of the DSWD or the Local Government Unit. This individual should be further certified by the Social Worker of his/her Local Social Welfare and Development Office (LSWDO) as a legitimate and eligible representative of the patient.

On the other hand, no solicitation permit will be issued to any business corporation, organization or association intending to solicit for the aforementioned purposes such that these bodies shall donate as part of their corporate social responsibility. However, their welfare arm, if any, will be allowed given that these bodies have a separate Security and Exchange Commission registration as a non-profit and non-stock organization.

Moreover, solicitation activities should also never involve lottery, raffle, and other game of chances or hazard. Solicitation paraphernalia should not portray a dehumanizing picture or situation of the intended beneficiaries.

Persons involved in the fund raising activities should have absolutely no share in the proceeds of the activities. Not more than 15% of the proceeds should be used for the administrative cost and the remaining 85% should be utilized entirely for the beneficiaries or intended projects.

Solicitation permits can be acquired from the DSWD-CAR Regional Office located at #40 North Drive, Baguio City beside NBI and BIR-CAR. Applicants should submit a duly accomplished application form, SEC certification, registration, license or accreditation certificate from the DSWD or LSWDO on the status of the applicant, list and profile of people involved in the activity, Work and Financial Plan, and other requirements to be identified after assessment.

“Application for local fund drive permit will be charged a processing fee of Php500.00 and Php1, 000.00 for national fund drives. These amounts are relatively small compared to the proceeds that our solicitors may gather after their fund drives. So we strongly push them to acquire their solicitation permits. # DSWD-CAR Social Marketing Unit with Arnold Frias

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