BONTOC, Mountain Province – A total of 867 indigent senior citizens of this capital town received their social pension from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) – Regional Office on January 23, 2019 at the Bontoc Municipal Capitol.
The department provides social pensioners a monthly stipend of P500, if in a quarterly basis is P1, 500 per quarter, totalling to P6, 000 for one year to augment their daily subsistence and other medical needs.
According to Angeline Cortez from the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office (MSWDO) and the Focal Person for Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens (SPISC), what the beneficiaries recently received is their social pension in the 4th quarter of 2018 and 1st quarter of 2019, thus, totalling to P3, 000.
Of the total beneficiaries, the highest numbers of senior citizens are from Barangay Bontoc Ili totalling to 130. The others beneficiaries are Barangay Alab Oriente – 21, Barangay Proper – 30, Balili – 11, Bayoyo – 32, Caluttit – 11, Caneo- 43, Dalican – 50, Guina-ang- 109, Gonogon – 38, Mainit – 100, Maligcong – 63, Poblacion – 20, Samoki – 53, Talubin – 84 and Tocucan – 72.
She said that the SPISC is assistance to indigent older persons in accordance to the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010 or Republic Act 9994. Under RA 9994, indigent senior citizens are those 60 years old and above who are frail, sick, disabled, and not receiving monthly pension from Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), Social Security System (SSS), Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO), Armed Forces of the Philippines Savings and Loan Association, Inc. (AFPSLAI) and other private insurance companies. Senior citizens who do not have permanent source of income or regular support from their families or relatives are also qualified to avail of the program.
Cortez explained that the DSWD gives priority to senior citizens age 80 and above. Indigent senior citizens age 70 years old and above are the second priority while 60 years old and above are the third priority.
Data from MSWDO shows that there are 2,876 who applied for senior citizens Identification Card in Bontoc while 147 qualified indigent senior citizens are on the wait list to receive their social pension. Despite this, she assured that the MSWDO submitted the list to the DSWD- Regional Office for approval and sourcing of fund.
Meanwhile, requirements for an indigent senior citizen to avail of the program includes copy of Live Birth or Certificate of Baptism, 1X1 ID picture and full-accomplished form of an interview conducted by a social worker from the MSWDO. By Alpine L. Killa