All six (6) provinces of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) will now be implementing the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) Community Drive Development (CDD) program through the scale up of Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS) Project into the National Community Driven Development Program (NCDDP).

DSWD-CAR OIC Regional Directtor Janet P. Armas, said that the scale-up has opened opportunity for the Province of Benguet in using the CDD approach towards development. “For the past 11 years of KALAHI- CIDSS Project, it is only this year that Benguet will be able to implement the CDD program and we are hoping that the program’s gains in other provinces in the Cordilleras will also be experienced by the people of Benguet.”, Director Armas added.

Meanwhile, Assistant Regional Director for Operations Edna S. Benitez mentioned that the Regional Project Management Office (RPMO) has been conducting orientations with the Local Government Units regarding their enrollment on the program as well as the KALAHI CIDSS- NCDDP processes.

With the expansion of the program, 31 additional municipalities will be covered in the region – 26 of which will be starting to implement the program this year. Out of the 26 municipalities, 12 municipalities will be covered in Abra, 1 municipality in Apayao, 7 municipalities in Benguet, 2 municipalities in Ifugao, and 4 municipalities in Mt. Province. ARD Benitez explained that as part of the preparation for the expansion, the field office has to hire more than 200 staff for the RPMO, Sub-RPMO, and for the covered areas. As of September 2014, DSWD-CAR was able to reach 88% completion rate in the hiring for the needed positions under NCDDP.

Still in connection to the upcoming KALAHI CIDSS – NCDDP implementation, Field Office CAR has planned to conduct a 1-day LGU Provincial forum in the provinces of Abra, Benguet, and Mountain Province simultaneous with the KALAHI CIDSS-NCDDP Provincial Launching and MOA signing. The provincial launch for Abra is on 18 September 2014, Benguet on19 September 2014, and in Mt. Province on 22 September 2014.

¬“There were some municipalities who waived to be included under NCDDP, but we are expecting more municipalities to be included in 2015. What is more important is their willingness to engage themselves for the primary purpose of the program which is the promotion of community-driven development,” KALAHI CIDSS-NCDDP Regional Project Coordinator Libertine Balicdang shared. Aside from the target coverage, the program also intends to enhance services to the beneficiary areas in partnership with other government agencies and to promote stronger local participation of its stakeholders, especially the engagement of the local government in CDD processes.

Aside from the 31 new areas, 14 municipalities in the region are currently implementing the CDD through the KALAHI-CIDSS Project funded under the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). #DSWD-CAR, SOCIAL MARKETING UNIT, STRELLE C. QUEJADO

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