TACLOBAN CITY- Evaluators from the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) were in the in the city to conduct a validation as Tacloban was shortlisted for the presidential award for child-friendly municipalities and cities.
Tacloban, the lone highly urbanized city in the region, is nominated for the Seal of Child-Friendly Local Government (SCFLG) – a recognition and audit system for LGU-initiated programs benefiting children.
The team, headed by Ma. Erlinda Aguila, evaluated five barangays namely, 92, 93, 87 and 43 and one model barangay- Brgy. 62-B, identified by the local government unit.
Other members of the evaluation team were Maricel Manlapaz (DSWD), SPO2 Marsha Agustin (PNP), and Jacob Maximin Thaddeus Taguinod (CWC) from the National Award Committee (NAC).
Also part of the team were Jenna Negros (Department of Interior and Local Government), Dr. Milagros Bolito (Department of Health), Dr. Catalino Dotollo (National Nutrition Council) and Richelle Villamor from regional sub-committee for the Welfare of Children.
Last year, Tacloban City garnered a 91% rating in the Child-Friendly Local Governance Audit (CFLGA) which merited its inclusion in the list of 18 LGUs shortlisted nationwide for the SCFLG.
According to Aguila, the seal’s indicators include the LGU’s policy formulation and resource mobilization in the delivery of basic social services for health, education, social protection and community initiated projects for the welfare of children.
She added that they will also look into indicators in the barangay level, like the presence of barangay health stations, elementary or high school, day care centers, and functionality of the local and barangay councils for the protection of children.
Last Friday (Sept.8), the team conducted their exit conference which presented the initial results of the validation they have conducted.
Tacloban City is among four HUCs included in the nationwide SCFLG shortlist which includes Baguio, Davao, and Muntinlupa.
Among the noteworthy programs of the city benefitting children is the supplementary feeding program which benefits 4,260 children from 71-day care centers around the city.
Lasting a cycle of 120 days, it is being implemented by the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) and is considered to be instrumental in the drop of malnutrition prevalence in the city.
The city government also maintains a center for abused children (along with a Center for Abused Women) – the only facility of its kind in Region 8 which offers psychosocial support and a temporary sanctuary for neglected and maltreated children.
Child-friendly desks were also instituted in the barangays to render protection services benefiting children, while the City Health Office maintains a network of health centers which puts a premium on child health care.
The promotion of health and welfare of children in the city is one of the priortiy programs of City Mayor Cristina Romualdez.
The Presidential Award for the Child-Friendly Municipalities and Cities is pursuant to Executive Order No. 184 issued last December 13, 1999. It is considered as a mechanism to gauge the level of child-friendliness of a particular city or municipality and at the same time gives recognition to LGUs that puts a premium on child-friendly Governance. (HENRY JAMES G.ROC/CIO)