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PH delegation mainstreams durian in CIIE 2023

E. Samar farmers finish farm business school

PSA turns over 2022 CBMS data to the LGU of Pintuyan, Southern Leyte

Farmer group in Samar town gets nearly half a million assistance from DAR

Newly-inaugurated road project to boost peace and development in Northern Samar

DPWH-Biliran DEO holds mid-year contractors’ meeting

High-powered firearm seized in Gandara, Samar clash

Eastern Visayas’ economy expands by 6.8% in 2022




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DepEd, Save the Children, and Prudence Foundation cite success of School Safety Project protecting 47,000 PH schools from disasters, climate change

Comprehensive School Safety Ecosystem (CSSE) Project
Batang Empowered and Resilient Team (BERT) members are using the School Watching Application (SWApp) as they take part in assessing the dangers after typhoons and other disasters that hit their schools. {Photo by Anna Dominique Esmeralda/Save the Children)

Press Release
October 13, 2023

QUEZON CITY – On International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Department of Education (DepEd), Save the Children Philippines, and Prudence Foundation celebrated the success of the Comprehensive School Safety Ecosystem (CSSE) Project and reiterated their commitments to making learning safe for Filipino learners.

The CSSE Project is a multi-stakeholder partnership by DepEd, Prudence Foundation and Save the Children aimed at strengthening the resilience of the Philippine school system to all hazards, including the impact of the climate crisis.

Since its launch in 2018, the CSSE Project has already reached over 620,000 people across the Philippines through different interventions that leverage innovation, technology, data, collaboration, and children’s participation. It also serves as a sustainable and scalable strategy for protecting all 47,000 schools in the Philippines against disasters, including the effects of climate change.

“With the continuous threats of extreme weather events such as typhoons, floods, and impacts of climate change, we stand firm in our commitment to keep students, teachers, and staff safe in schools, and to limit disruption in learning in case such disasters take place using the different components of the ecosystem and tools developed by the project,” said Atty. Christian C. Rivero, Director IV Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service of the Department of Education. “We are grateful to have worked with Save the Children Philippines and Prudence Foundation to help achieve the vision of uninterrupted education in the country.”

The Philippines ranks first in the World Risk Index with the highest risk of disasters in the world in 2022 and 2023. The said report projects that Filipinos are most vulnerable to disasters due to extreme natural events and impacts of climate change.

“Education is key to uplifting the lives of the most marginalized and vulnerable children, and any interruption in children’s education can negatively impact their lives in the long run,” said Atty. Alberto Muyot, CEO of Save the Children Philippines. “We are grateful for this partnership project with the DepEd and Prudence Foundation. We hope that the achievements of the CSSE Project will be replicated in all schools in the Philippines, and influence other countries so that children can enjoy quality education that is safe from disasters.”

One of the most notable accomplishments of the project was the creation of the Disaster Risk Reduction Management Information System (DRRMIS) within the Department of Education. This featured three digital apps that were adapted to the DepEd's needs and integrated into their processes to increase data collection for school safety response and planning.

The Rapid Assessment of Damages Report, or RADaR, digital app enables the immediate reporting of disaster-related damages, allowing the DepEd to respond quickly. The information from the app helped the DepEd's overall internal and external school safety coordination and planning, as well as influencing an increase in the DepEd's disaster response budget. Comprehensive School Safety (CSS) Monitoring and the School Watching App (SWApp) are two more applications and tools developed to support preparedness and children's participation.

“Disaster preparedness and resilience is very important in any setting – even more so in the context of children’s education. The risks to children’s education are increasing, but so is our drive in developing and delivering programs to increase resilience and create a safe and healthy learning environment for children,” said Marc Fancy, Executive Director of Prudence Foundation, the community investment arm of PruLife UK’s parent company Prudential plc.

The CSSE Project received an award at the United Nations Sasakawa Awards for Disaster Risk Reduction in 2022. Best practices from the CSSE Project were recognized at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 27) in 2022, the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction in 2022, and the UK Forum for International Education and Training (UKFIET) Conference in 2023.





DAR proves unending government support to farmers

DAR farming equipment support to San Isidro Rural Association
The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Eastern Samar Provincial Office turns over farm machineries and farm inputs worth P1-million to the San Isidro Rural Association in Hernani, Eastern Samar.

October 13, 2023

HERNANI, Eastern Samar – The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Eastern Samar Provincial Office proved once again that delivery of government assistance is unending with the recent turnover of farm machineries and inputs to an agrarian reform beneficiaries organization (ARBO) in this town.

Late last month, Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer II (PARPO II) Danilo Lozada led the turnover of two hand tractors with trailer, two rice threshers with blower, six floating tillers, three grass cutters, eight knapsack sprayers, a water pump, and hybrid seeds to the San Isidro Rural Association (SIRA) in a simple ceremony held at the covered court of Barangay San Isidro.

Lozada, emphasized to the members of the SIRA that the help coming from the government should be well utilized and used for the betterment, not only for their organization but, more importantly, for the whole nation. “Let us help one another and help the government,” said Lozada.

Municipal Agrarian Reform Program Officer (MARPO) Glicerio Camenforte disclosed that these packages of assistance amounting to one million pesos is funded under the Major Crop-based Block Farm Productivity Enhancement of the Climate Resilient Farm Productivity Support (CRFPS) program.

He further disclosed that this is in line with Agrarian Reform Secretary Conrado Estrella III’s nine primary goals which include provision of modern farm equipment and farm inputs to ARBOs in order to increase agricultural production and eventually improve the quality of lives of the farmers, particularly the agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs).

Meanwhile, Elias Gayoso, president of the SIRA, assured the officials of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) that they will value everything given to them and maximize the use of the farm equipment, as he expressed their gratitude.

SIRA is composed of 97 members, wherein 45 are ARBs. Most of them are into rice farming.

San Isidro Rural Association





Filing of complaints now easier with CARe System – DTI

DTI care system
From L to R: Atty. M. Marcus N. Valdez, Atty. Marimel Porciuncula, Atty. Cherryl Carbonell, Asec. Mary Jean Pacheco, Undersecretary Kim Lokin, Undersecretary Blesila Lantayona, Secretary Fred Pascual, EDGA-USAID Deputy Director Eric Florimon-Reed, UPPAF-RESPOND Chief-of-Party Dr. Enrico L. Basillo, UPPAF RESPOND Dr. Mario Lamberte, Asec. Agaton Uvero, FTEB Director Atty. Fhillip D. Sawali, and USAID Mr. Jay De Quiros

By DTI-Consumer Protection and Advocacy Bureau
October 13, 2023

MAKATI CITY – To provide a more efficient and seamless complaint filing process, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the University of the Philippines Public Administration Research and Extension Services Foundation Inc. (UPPAF) introduced the DTI Consumer Complaints Assistance and Resolution System (CARe System) to the general public today, 13 October 2023 held at the New World Hotel Manila.

During the launch, DTI Secretary Fred Pascual emphasized, “The PODRS and CARe Systems are not just tools but symbols of our commitment to justice, fairness, and progress. They signify our government's dedication to fostering a more inclusive and equitable society where access to justice and consumer protection is within everyone's reach. With such systems, consumers will have a strong ally in their corner to safeguard their interests.”

Establishing an Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) system is an ASEAN Commitment, as stated in Strategic Goal 3 of the ASEAN Strategic Action Plan on Consumer Protection (ASAPCP) 2016-2025. This commitment aims to enhance consumer confidence in the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and cross-border commercial transactions by creating an ODR System in each ASEAN Member State.

The DTI CARe System offers a user-friendly interface and robust security features, enabling consumers to file complaints and find resolutions easily. The system will address complaints that fall within the jurisdiction of the Department. Any other concerns will be directed to the appropriate government office or local government unit (LGU) for further action.

To register in the DTI Consumer CARe System, individuals must provide the following information:

a. Name;

b. Complete Postal Address;

c. Age Group;

d. Social Classification, if applicable [Senior Citizen, Person with Disability (PWD),

e. Indigenous People and Solo Parent];

f. Email Address;

g. DTI Consumer CARe System Account Password;

h. Telephone or Mobile Phone number; and

i. Copy of one Valid Government ID [Students may use their valid School ID].

Upon registration, individuals are required to provide their consent to the DTI Consumer CARe System and Privacy Statement. The system will send an email containing the registration information and verification link to the email address provided. Registrants who successfully complete the DTI Consumer CARe System will receive a copy of their information and a verification link sent to the email address they provided.

The trade and industry chief further highlighted that the DTI Consumer CARe System launched today is very timely serving as a prelude to the provision under the proposed Internet Transactions Act (ITA), recently approved by Congress on third reading for signature into law by the President. He reiterated that this is part of the DTI’s vision to promote the digitalization of government services.

Under the proposed Internet Transactions Act, the DTI is directed to facilitate an alternative mode of dispute resolution for online consumers as well as online businesses.

Through the Consumer CARe System, consumers would have a seamless and stress-free experience, from the time they file their initial complaint until the final resolution.

Highlighting the DTI’s goals of ensuring consumer protection, Secretary Pascual said, “By embracing technology while simultaneously implementing safeguards and raising awareness, we can create an environment where consumers can confidently engage in commerce and other activities online, knowing that their interests and security are protected. The DTI firmly believes that establishing the PODRS and Consumer CARe System will signify a momentous achievement, revolutionizing how consumer complaints are addressed and resolved nationally and internationally.”

For more information on the DTI Consumer CARe System, send an email to





Nabang-Gadgaran road commenced construction

nabang-gadgaran road construction

October 12, 2023

CALBAYOG CITY – Samar First DEO has commenced the construction of the Nabang-Gadgaran road with the contract amount of P94.8 million under the Convergence and Special Support Program (Tatag ng Imprastruktura para sa Kapayapaan at Seguridad or TIKAS).

The first phase will work on the embankment of gravel road which will span 2.2 kilometers and a width of 30 meters. The project started in Barangay Nabang which will reach until Barangay Limarayon.

The construction of the entire Nabang-Gadgaran road will approximately span a total of 6.19 kilometers with four (4) lanes and slope protection. The project will connect Barangay Nabang in Oquendo District and traverse different barangays until its endpoint in Barangay Gadgaran in Calbayog Diversion Road. This will serve as an alternate and faster route for motorist coming from Leyte going to Northern Samar and vice versa instead of taking Brgy. Lonoy junction which will lead them to go through the Calbayog-Catarman and Calbayog-Allen roads.

To provide/build quality and safe infrastructure facilities that connects and speed up movement of people, goods and services, as well as connects barangays in the district by integrated transport system.

This multi-year project is targeted to be completed in 2025.





PSA brings services closer to the people of Tolosa, Leyte

PSA services in Tolosa, Leyte

Press Release
October 12, 2023

TACLOBAN CITY – As a continuing effort to bring its services much closer to the Filipino people, the Philippine Statistics Authority Regional Statistical Services Office (RSSO) VIII in collaboration with PSA Leyte, once again had the honor to serve the people of Tolosa, Leyte during the recently concluded “Bagong Pilipinas Serbisyo Fair” (BPSF) held in Visayas State University last 23-24 September 2023.

PSA delegates attended the event headed by Deputy National Statisticain, Minerva Eloisa P. Esquivias together with Regional Director Wilma A. Perante, Civil Registration and Administrative Support Division Chief, Anesia S. Babante, Registration Officer III, Marife R. Molon and PSA Leyte Chief Statistical Specialist, Sheryl Ann A. Jamisola and other PSA and Local Civil Registry Office (LCRO) personnel of Tolosa. PSA officials assisted during the Awarding of the Certificates of Liver Birth (COLB) in Security Paper to 262 beneficiaries under the PhilSys Birth Registration Assistance Project (PBRAP).

The PSA also catered clients under the various services provided with the overall count as follows:

Step 2 PhilSys Registration:   228
ePhilID issued/printed:   69
Prepared COLBs under PBRAP:   46
PBRAP Listing for verification:   52

The PSA also conducted mobile acceptance for requests of civil registry documents with the following total number of applications filed:

Live Birth:   525
Marriage:   45
CenoMar:   22
Death:   6

The BPSF is the country’s biggest service caravan aimed at providing government services to the Filipino people across the country who may not have the means to avail of these benefits. It is one of several flagship programs and projects being launched with the goal of attaining comprehensive policy reforms and full economic recovery.





CARD Inc. Medical Services opens in Tanauan, Leyte

CARD, Inc. Medical Services in Tanauan, Leyte
MaHP Director Dr. Roderick Belen (rightmost, front row), CARD, Inc. Board of Trustee Ms. Haydee Eulin (leftmost, second row), CARD, Inc. Deputy Executive Director for Finance and Admin Lousel Cortes (2nd to the left, front row), CARD Bank Regional Director Ms. Luella Bulalacao (2nd to the right, front row), Mayor’s Office representative Judge Efren Abando (3rd to the left, front row), and Brgy. Captain Mr. Romeo M. Tecson (3rd to the right, front row) alongside other CARD MRI’s staff and clients attended the inauguration of CARD, Inc. new healthcare facility. It aims to bring healthcare services closer to more Filipino communities.

October 11, 2023

TANAUAN, Leyte – To provide healthcare access to far-flung communities, CARD, Inc. (A Microfinance NGO) - CARD MRI’s Microfinance and Health Protection (MaHP) opens a clinic and laboratory facility that offers medical services in Tanauan, Leyte on October 5, 2023.

Recognizing clients' critical need for a health protection program urged CARD, Inc. to establish clinics and laboratories across the Philippines, offering affordable medical consultations and laboratory services, including maternal care, child health, family planning, and diagnostic tests.

CARD, Inc. also partnered with private healthcare practitioners and facilities to ensure the continuous availability of healthcare support and extend the services not only to CARD MRIs clients and their dependents but also to the general public.

“Our mission is to empower the community to make healthier choices and establish an accessible and affordable healthcare facility,” MaHP Director Dr. Roderick Belen said.

The said activity was part of the CARD MRI’s mission to combat poverty through enhanced healthcare access.

Among those who graced the opening of the facility were MaHP Director Dr. Roderick Belen, CARD, Inc. Board of Trustee Ms. Haydee Eulin; Deputy Executive Director for Finance and Admin Ms. Lousel Cortes; CARD, Inc. Assistant Executive Director Larry Jun Barcoma; Regional Director Isidro Guevarra Jr.; CARD Bank Regional Director Ms. Luella Bulalacao; and MaHP Chief MedTech Laarni Fernandez. Also invited were Municipal Mayor Gina E. Merilo represented by Judge Efren Abando and Brgy. Captain Mr. Romeo M. Tecson and some clients.

“This achievement serves as a testament to our unwavering commitment to bringing quality healthcare access for all, a cause that is set to transform lives and communities in the Philippines and beyond,” CARD, Inc. Trustee Ms. Haydee Eulin said.

As of October 2023, CARD, Inc. (MaHP) operates three clinics and laboratories located in San Pablo City, Laguna, and Tagum City Davao del Norte. Meanwhile the third clinic is located in Barangay Buntay, Tanauan, Leyte.

Going Digital

In 2012, CARD recognized the critical need for health protection, thus with the support of CARD, Inc., CARD Laboratory was inaugurated, offering diagnostic services at a minimal fee, in addition to free consultations.

Eight years after, with the advancement of technology and with the COVID-19 pandemic, the company introduced CARD e-Doctor to offer free online medical consultations via Facebook messenger and a series of informative lectures on various health topics, including disease descriptions, symptoms, treatments, and preventive measures, were conducted by partner doctors via live Facebook sessions.

This interactive platform allowed viewers to actively participate, posing questions during the live discussions, and receiving expert answers.

As CARD MRI continues in uplifting the marginalized, the new clinic and laboratory is now open and ready to serve clients, staff, and Tanauan communities with holistic and accessible healthcare services. The said facility is open from Monday to Friday, 6:30 AM to 4:00 PM.





Flood control structure erected in Brgy. Casab-ahan

Brgy. Casab-ahan flood control

October 11, 2023

CALBAYOG CITY – A flood control structure built along Gandara River in Brgy. Casab-ahan has already been completed according to the Department of Public Works and Highways Samar First District Engineering Office.

The flood mitigating structure has a total length of 370 meters (left side has a length of 272 meters while its right side has 98 meters) and a height of three (3) meters which connects to the initial flood control wall built in the area. Part of its scope of work includes a 1.6-meter-wide walkway that runs along the same length as the structure itself and a 0.8 parapet that serves as a protection wall for the residents of the barangay.

The flood control structure will benefit the community with 1,291 population (2020 Census) by reducing flood-related environmental impacts, especially during heavy rains.

This project has total revised contract amount of P53.05 million funded under the General Appropriations Act (GAA) for FY 2023.





Tubod in Surigao del Norte named most competitive municipality

most competitive municipality

By DTI-Regional Operations Group
October 10, 2023

BUTUAN CITY – Tubod, a municipality in Surigao del Norte, has been recognized as the most competitive among 315 5th–6th class municipalities during the Philippine Creative Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Congress held on September 28, underscoring its unwavering dedication to excellence and advancement across diverse sectors.

This distinction was awarded as part of the annual Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index, a program devised by the National Competitiveness Council in partnership with regional competitiveness committees. The ranking evaluates the competitiveness of cities and municipalities based on an overall competitiveness score, which is derived from combining scores across five crucial dimensions: economic dynamism, government efficiency, infrastructure, resilience, and innovation.

Tubod Mayor Richelle B. Romarate emphasized the importance of this award for the local government, saying that, "this award is of great significance to LGU-Tubod because it signifies what has been accomplished across the five pillars: economic dynamism, government efficiency, disaster resilience, infrastructure, and innovation."

Romarate stressed the municipality's commitment to maintaining its competitive position, adding that "in order to sustain our position, we will focus on surpassing our own records. Although this is a competitive index, we are not competing with other municipalities. Our main goal is to identify and address shortcomings for the coming year. Our actions are guided by the standards set by DTI for CMCI, and we strive to meet those standards in every way possible."

Tubod's outstanding performance also earned recognition in several other categories, including Top 1 in the government efficiency and innovation pillars, Top 3 in the resilience pillar, Top 4 in the infrastructure pillar, and Top 9 in the economic dynamism pillar among 5th–6th class municipalities.

Notably, Tubod was not the sole local government unit (LGU) from the Caraga region honored during the event. Other awardees from Caraga included General Luna, Surigao del Norte, which was ranked as the top 5 overall most competitive LGU for 5th–6th class municipalities, securing the top 1 spot in the infrastructure pillar and the top 7 spot in the economic dynamism pillar.

Butuan City was recognized as the Top 2 Most Improved Highly Urbanized City. Tagana-an, Surigao del Norte, secured a spot in the Top 10 of the economic dynamism pillar.

San Jose in the Province of Dinagat Islands achieved the Top 4 in the Government Efficiency Pillar among 3rd–4th class municipalities, while Burgos, Surigao del Norte, was acknowledged in the Top 8 of the Infrastructure Pillar among 5th–6th class municipalities.

"These awards not only highlight the LGUs’ excellence but also underscore the region's dedication to progress and development in various key areas, positioning Caraga as a substantial contributor to the Philippines' competitive landscape," DTI Caraga Regional Director Gay Tidalgo said.





Samar I continues to build road connectivity in Calbayog City

Libertad to Barangay Roxas I barangay road

October 9, 2023

CALBAYOG CITY – A paved road from Barangay Libertad to Barangay Roxas I has been constructed by Samar First DEO drawn from the General Appropriations Act (GAA) for FY 2023.

A 350-meter Portland Cement Concrete Pavement (PCCP) with a width of five (5) meters is built in the said area to replace the footh path that residents would trudge in order to reach said barangays. Part of the scope is a 175-meter open drainage to discharge water. Moreover, this drainage structure stops where the ricefields are located so that water can flow freely towards it to help with irrigation.

The project has a contract amount of P9.89 million.

The road construction primarily aims to connect all areas as well as to provide ease and safe mobility of people and products. This road in the said barangay will allow faster transportation of their produce such as root crops and “copra” since it now offers different alternate routes to the marketplace which will lessen the travel time.



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