Mayor Ronaldo P. Aquino with DepEd-Calbayog “ANINAU TUNGAYOD” artists during the opening of “PAKIGDUYOG” Art Exhibit 2014. photo by IAN VILLANUEVA BALDOMARO

CALBAYOG CITY- “The city government of Calbayog will do its utmost to help and support our differently-abled brothers and sisters.” Thus said Mayor Ronaldo P. Aquino during his remarks at the general assembly of Calbayog City Federation of Persons with Disability (CFPWD) recently held at Carmen Covered Court, this city. “Our government recognizes your abilities and is committed to supporting innovative solutions to remove from you the barriers to social and economic inclusion. Your participation in our society will now be improved, and likewise, the social issues you are facing in the communities will now be addressed,” the city mayor said.

The one-day assembly whose theme was “Talino at Paninindigan ng Taong may Kapansanan Pasaporte sa Kaunlaran” brought together 78 participants from all over Calbayog. The whole-day gathering was full-packed with activities including Election of District Association Officers, Election of CFPWD Officers and Election of PDAO (Persons with Disabilities Affairs Office) Head. This was highlighted with the review of rules and functions of a PDAO head.

Under DILG Memorandum Circular No. 2010 or “The Establishment of Persons with Disability Affairs Office (PDAO) in Every Province, City and Municipality Pursuant to RA 10070”, the PDAO head formulates and implements policies, plans and programs for the promotion of the welfare of the PWDs in coordination with concerned national and local government agencies; Coordinates the implementation of the provisions of RA 10070, Batas Pambansa Blg. 344, otherwise known as the Accessibility Law, and other relevant laws at the local level; Represents PWDs in meeting of the local development councils and other special bodies; Recommends and enjoins the participation of non-government organizations (NGOs) and people’s organizations (POs) in the implementation of all disability related laws and policies; gather and compile relevant data on PWDs in their localities; disseminate information including, but not limited to, programs and activities for PWDs, statistics on PWDs, including children with disability, and training and employment opportunities for PWDs; submit reports to the office of the local chief executive on the implementation of program and services for the promotion of the welfare of PWDs in their respective areas of jurisdiction; ensure that policies, plans and programs for the promotion of the welfare of PWDs are funded by both the national and local government; Monitor fundraising activities being conducted for the benefits of PWDs; andSeek donations in cash or in kind from local or foreign donors to implement an approved work plan for PWDs, in accordance with existing laws and regulations; and perform such other functions as may be necessary for the promotion and protection of the welfare of the PWDs. Tessie Mumar of the City Social Welfare and Development Office was just named as the PDAO head for the city. (AIMEE A. CATALAN)