No. of :

No. of Shares:

Currently viewed by: Marcus Rosit

’Adopt-an-FR’ program sustains successful reintegration of former rebels in Agusan Norte

The increasing number of rebel returnees in Agusan del Norte is reflective of the successful implementation of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) in the province.

This number of rebel returnees availing of the grants and incentives offered under the E-CLIP posed a challenge to the program’s sustainability, prompting Gov. Ma. Angelica Rosedell M. Amante, who chairs the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC), to create the ‘Adopt-an-FR’ program.

FR refers to “Friends Rescued,” or former rebels who surrendered to the government and availed of its reintegration program.

“It has been noted that we have been very successful with our efforts in inviting our brothers to return to the folds of the law, but we have failed to look into their final destination, which is for them to be reintegrated into their chosen community; that’s the reason why we have this program,” the governor underscored.

DILG provincial director Ellen Vee Chua, who heads the PPOC secretariat, explained that the Adopt-an-FR is more than just a  structured partnership between the provincial and local governments, as it received generous support from the private sector and  civic society organizations.

“The LGUs, together with the partner institutions, utilized their resources  to better serve the FRs by matching them with appropriate livelihood and job opportunities where they can reintegrate productively in the locality of their choice,” Chua said.

“[Rebel returnees now] work as construction workers; some are assigned to offices for clerical and utility work; others are now members of the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Units; enlisted personnel; security officers, among others,” said Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office chief, Dr. Silver Joy Tejano.

“The Adopt-an-FR program also gives consideration to FRs who are incapacitated to work. In this situation, their identified family member or representative will be working on  their behalf to guarantee the survival of their families,” Tejano added.

The Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) further disclosed that as of December 2023, there are 155 FRs in the province of Agusan del Norte who benefitted from the program.

Nasipit Mayor Roscoe Democrito B. Plaza explained the background of the Adopt-an-FR program to PIA-Agusan del Norte information center manager Nora L. Molde. Photo of PIA-ADN.

“Nelson” is among the rebel returnees who have benefited from the program.

“Dako kaayo ang tabang sa gobyerno sa akoa ug wala ko pasagdi. Pinaaagi sa Adopt-an-FR nga programa, naa koy trabaho, nabuhi nako ako pamilya ug nakapadayon ug eskwela akong mga anak sa kolehiyo,” Nelson shared.

[Translation:The government helped me a lot. They took care of me. Through the  Adopt-an-FR program, I now have a job, and I was able to provide for my family, and my children managed to pursue their college education.]

After his surrender in 2022, “Nelson” was endorsed to the local government of Nasipit, which took him in as a job order (JO) employee. 

Nasipit Mayor Roscoe Democrito B. Plaza said he did not have second thoughts about accepting "Nelson,” as he believes that he deserves a second chance.

“They deserve a second chance to change their lives for the better, and in this manner, they can help us (government) end the terrorist activities of the CPP-NPAs,” Plaza said. (NCLM/PIA-Agusan del Norte)

During the interview conducted by PIA - Agusan del Norte with Nelson and other FRs who benefited from the Adopt-an-FR program. They expressed gratitude to the provincial government for the program, as they were not left behind. Photo of PIA-ADN.

About the Author

Nora Lanuza



Feedback / Comment

Get in touch