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Connecting Paths: KALAHI-CIDSS makes way for better access to government programs

Communities in Tapaz town in Capiz were suffering from limited access and transportation challenges until the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services or KALAHI-CIDSS, through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) made way to make life better for its residents, especially the indigenous people (IP).

Tapaz town is one of the municipalities in the province of Capiz whose residents in the upland barangays had to walk long hours or ride a “habal-habal”, a motorcycle taxi charging exorbitant service fees. 

The agonizingly long and dangerous path to walk limits the children's access to a better education. Access to health care and selling farm produce to the town proper is an everyday struggle.

The KALAHI-CIDSS, a poverty alleviation program of the national government, serves as the path from poverty to a better life for these upland residents.

The KALAHI-CIDSS holds a procurement preparation meeting with some local government employees and community volunteers. (Photo courtesy of Tapaz Information Office)

This aims to strengthen community structures in some selected areas of the country through community-driven development and improving the quality of life of Filipinos living in poverty. 

The farm-to-market road sub-project of the DSWD KALAHI-CIDSS is located at Barangay Roxas to Daan Sur in Tapaz town worth P16,000,000.00 from the DSWD, and a P5,000,000.00 counterpart from the Tapaz municipal government,  concreting the 1.471 kilometers rough road.

Tapaz Information Officer EnP Stephen Faeldin said that the concreted road is a gateway for the 22 indigenous people (IP) barangays in the municipality. 

Teodirecho Gilbaliga, an IP leader of Barangay Daan Sur, said that for a long time, they have been patiently waiting to have a concrete road.

“Maka-eskwela na sa banwa ang amon mga kabataan sang manami kag ang amon produkto madali na madala sa banwa (Our children can now study in good schools in the town and our products can be easily transported to the town proper),” Gilbaliga stated.

Gilbaliga said that they are happy because now, they don't have to walk for several hours just to get to the town.

Meanwhile, the teacher-in-charge of Barangay Daan Sur Elementary School Zaldy Barnizo said that with better road infrastructure, it will be easier for teachers to teach in upland barangays and the overall quality of education for IP learners will improve. 

Barnizo is a 2023 awardee of the KALAHI-CIDSS Bayani Ka Award IP category in Iloilo City for his volunteerism and significant contribution to the success of the program in their community. 

Aside from the current project, the KALAHI-CIDSS also funded more than P15 million for road concreting of barangay Katipunan, Libertad, and Wright in 2018. 

The ongoing construction of the joint farm-to-market road sub-project of the DSWD KALAHI-CIDSS and Tapaz municipal government. (Photo courtesy of Tapaz Information Office)

Tapaz town Mayor Roberto Palomar said that the road, which will serve residents from several upland barangays, is more than just a concrete or a pathway.

“This road is a symbol of our unity, collective dedication to a brighter future, and the transformation of our upland barangays,” Palomar added. (AGP/PLF/PIA Capiz)

About the Author

Pia Lorraine Francisco

Information Officer

Region 6

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