Bringing livelihood opportunities to Pangasinenses, Governor Amado I. Espino III launched the Abig Pangasinan Project – Karagdagang Pangkabuhayan of the Provincial Government of Pangasinan in the town of Laoac on July 25.
In his message during the brief ceremony held at the Laoac Gymnasium, Governor Espino disclosed that Abig Pangasinan aims to address the socio-economic condition in the province which has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Mula sa salitang Pangasinan na ‘abig’ na ang ibig sabihin ay to heal, ang Abig Pangasinan ay karagdagang pangkabuhayan para sa inyong mga Pangasinense,” Governor Espino said.
The Abig Pangasinan is divided into two components, namely: Kabuhayan Palengke Karaban, an all-year activity to uplift the income of Pangasinense farmers, fisher folks, and animal farm growers and Karagdagang Pangkabuhayan (Cash for Work) which aims to provide additional financial capacity to different sectors by working in a community project that would benefit the public.
Under the Kabuhayan Palengke Karaban, the provincial government will buy products offered by small vendors, such as vegetables, meat, and others.
Governor Espino noted all sold commodities from this program will be brought to the 14 provincial government-run hospitals to be served as meals for patients.
The provincial chief executive also sought cooperation from the Pangasinenses to help curb the spread of COVID-19 in the province.
General Services Officer Evan Gladish Domalanta said that the provincial government spent almost P63,000 to purchase all the products sold by Laoac small vendors.
The other component, Karagdagang Pangkabuhayan (Cash for Work), will offer job opportunities, specifically, to persons with disabilities (PWDs) with cash incentives of P400 each.
In Laoac, recipients of the said component were 15 persons with disabilities (PWDs), who were chosen by Laoac Social Welfare and Development Office.
Earlier, Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer Emilio P. Samson Jr. bared that the provincial government allotted P2.7M for the aforementioned project which will be used from July to December 2020.
Aside from PWDs, the Abig Pangasinan Project will also target different sectors such as women, solo-parents, child development workers, LGBT communities, and out-of-school youths.
Meanwhile, the provincial government also staged the Kalinisan Karaban, the Plastics-for-Goods program of the provincial government which aims to promote solid waste management.
Through Kalinisan Karaban, Pangasinenses can exchange their collected wastes with grocery items available at the mobile store. Domalanta said that the Kalinisan Karaban collected a total of 118.5 kilograms of plastic wastes in Laoac.
It can be learned that the Abig Pangasinan Project also forms part in the celebration of the 42nd National Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation Week with the theme, “Together we demonstrate that the rights of children, women, and senior citizens with disabilities to have access to foods, medicines, and assistive devices is important to us; prioritizing it during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Also present during the launching of the project were: Board Member Chinky Perez-Tababa; local leaders from Laoac led by Mayor Ricardo Balderas and Vice Mayor Nelson Gayo who expressed their gratitude to the provincial government for extending assistance to their town during this time of COVID-19; and some department heads from the provincial government, namely: Provincial Planning and Development Officer Benita M. Pizarro and Provincial Agriculturist Dalisay A. Moya.
/Shiella Mae C. De Guzman (Photo by Neiza Ivana Ferrer)