Over 32,000 PWDs receive grant

Over 32,000 PWDs receive grant

COTABATO CITY — Up to 32,246 persons with disability (PWD) received an initial P6,000 grant each in 2023 from the Bangsamoro region’s Ministry of Social Services and Development, the regional agency reported.

Local executives in the six provinces and three cities in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), among them mayors in Basilan and in Maguindanao del Norte, confirmed on Sunday that the MSSD-BARMM had also provided 35,113 marginalized families with livelihood support, skills training and educational subsidy via the Unlad Pamilyang Bangsamoro Program last year.

“We shall help expand these programs in our province, as planned by the MSSD, via technical and manpower support from our local government units,” Basilan Gov. Hadjiman Salliman said in reaction to this development.

A 46-year-old Maranaw PWD, Monder Sarmin Akil, whose lower limbs are deformed since birth, said he is thankful for the MSSD-BARMM’s subsidy and is looking forward to the expansion of the program in far-flung areas in Lanao del Sur.

“We supported the peace process between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and now we are benefiting from the BARMM government, created as a result of that peace process,” another PWD, Mursiba Salik Ansar, an ethnic Maguindanaon, said in Filipino.

Yearend reports obtained from the provincial offices of the MSSD-BARMM indicate that the ministry had also responded to requests for emergency assistance by 216,028 residents in the region in 2023, mostly channeled through local government units. — John Felix M. Unson