LIVELIHOOD ASSISTANCE. A resident who is engaged in mushroom production from Piddig, Ilocos Norte gets interviewed by a field staff of the DSWD for the grant of livelihood assistance in this undated photo. Under the DSWD's sustainable livelihood program, each beneficiary is given up to PHP15,000 to support his/her business. (Photo courtesy of DSWD Field Office 1)

LAOAG CITY – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through the Ilocos Norte government has distributed livelihood assistance to 289 micro, small and medium enterprises in Laoag City and in the municipalities of Bacarra, Dingras and San Nicolas this week.

Through the DSWD’s Sustainable Livelihood program, each of the beneficiaries received an amount ranging from PHP9,000 to PHP15,000, depending on their proposed venture.

Provincial social welfare and development office Lilian Rin said Thursday this forms part of the recovery program of the DSWD that aims to extend financial assistance to low-income individuals and families whose livelihoods have been severely affected by the recent typhoon and earthquake.

“Through our governor, we were able to receive less than PHP3 million livelihood grant from the DSWD,” Rin said as the aid was personally requested by Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc to Social Welfare Secretary Erwin Tulfo during the latter’s visit to Ilocos Norte after a series of typhoons and strong earthquake that hit the province.

Prior to the endorsement of the beneficiaries, the selected MSMEs underwent a livelihood seeding and entrepreneurship development program. They were likewise trained on how to manage their finances to ensure that their chosen line of business will be sustained.

Estrelita Pasion, owner of a pottery business in San Nicolas town said she was grateful to the DSWD for giving additional capital for her small business.

“Thank you so much to the DSWD and to our local authorities for their unwavering support to the needy.

Pasion is just among the more than 10,000 beneficiaries of the continuing livelihood assistance from the DSWD who are trying to stay afloat in business amid a global crisis. (PNA)