Project Barangay Apokon, Manuel B. Suaybagenio Village Phase II, Tagum City

Project Barangay Apokon is a training-cum-production project for relocated squatters faced with the problem of building their own houses in the face of severe financial constraints. As they underwent training, their basic and functional literacy skills were enhanced.

The Project in a Capsule

This is a training cum production project for relocated informal settlers faced with the problem of building their own houses in the face of severe financial constraints. The men underwent training in the various aspects of building construction to prepare them for building their own houses. The women attended livelihood skills training classes and put up their own income earning projects. As they underwent training, their basic and functional literacy skills were enhanced.

The men built their own houses after being trained and certified by TESDA and the Association of Construction Workers. The LGU extended some assistance like sand, gravel, and water and from stakeholders GI sheets, rods, and cement. The actual experience of the men in building their houses qualified them for employment as construction workers. The women trained in livelihood skills now have income-generating projects that help augment the family income.

Project Barangay Apokon demonstrates how a local government can provide for the development of functional literacy according to the LCC definition “a range of skills and competencies … which enable individuals to live and work as human persons, develop their potential, make critical and informed decisions, and function effectively in society within the context of their environment and that of the wider community in order to improve the quality of their life and that of society.”

Where is the project located?

  • Barangay Apokon, Manuel B. Suaybagenio Village Phase II, Tagum City

What problems/situations propelled the initiators to develop the project?

  • Lack of basic education, high incidence of illiteracy and lack of skills/means of livelihood of relocated informal settlers
  • Difficulty of informal settlers in building decent homes because of financial constraints

Who conceptualized the program?

  • The heads of the Engineering, Planning, and Social Welfare and Community Affairs Offices of Tagum City under the leadership of Mayor Rey T. Uy

What are the objectives of the project?

  • To maximize the benefits and impact of the relocation project by helping the beneficiaries improve the quality of their life through enhanced functional literacy.

What strategies were adopted to solve the problem addressed?

  • Convergence and resource sharing which means that much can be achieved if people come together and pool their resources
  • Skills training: enhanced functional literacy
  • Parameters set by officers/agency involved so that resources available can be utilized
  • Involvement of stakeholders in planning the project
  • Signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to establish understanding of what each participant’s role should be
  • Coordinating the different projects and making them work together as one project of the LGU

How was support for the project derived?

  • The LGU acquired the relocation site and facilitated its development and subdivision into lots including titling.
  • Sand, gravel, and water were provided by the LGU for free.
  • Water was hauled by the Bureau of Fire Protection and City Fire Station from the city motor pool.
  • The LGU provided the honorarium for TESDA-accredited supervisor amounting to P56,000.00.
  • GI sheets, rods, and cement were donated by stakeholders out of the P10,000.00 core shelter assistance given through the DSWD.
  • Fund sources: 
    > DSWD-CIDSS P500,000 Core Shelter Project, National Housing Authority through a MOA of P1.4m for septic tank and power facilities
    > DSWD-CIDSS Capital Saving, Mobilization Project – P450,000 livelihood project for bag making, ice cream making, and vending and individual projects 
    > DANECO – free installation of main power lines

How was the project implemented?

  • Rigid training cum production routine of menfolk coordinated by TESDA and Association of Construction Workers (ACW)
  • Rigid implementation of rules for reporting of trainees according to construction site routine
  • Training of menfolk in masonry and carpentry given under ACW/TESDA accredited supervision: theory before the practicum as basis for TESDA certification
  • TESDA trained and certified learners built their own homes.

How was the project monitored/evaluated?

  • Regular monitoring through meetings and on-site visitation by project proponents
  • Regular monthly reports required by agencies involved

What problems were encountered?

  • Need for higher level literacy skills
  • Lack of sanitary toilets
  • Need for expanded livelihood assistance

How were the problems solved?

  • Provision of work-related training for developing higher level literacy skills
  • Monitoring of progress in the development of literacy skills relevant to the construction of houses
  • Transfer of funds for septic tanks and individual power connections from NHA to LGU
  • Temporary communal toilets constructed with neighborhood taking turns for their maintenance
  • Capital of P200,000.00 earmarked by LGU as initial additional capital for expanded livelihood ventures for the community the following year

What are the results of project implementation?

Impact on the community
  • Development of higher level literacy skills
  • Feeling of importance of relocated informal settlers because of attention given to their community
  • Sense of belonging, closeness among community members, desire to learn more to have a better quality of life, development and application of problem solving skills initiated by the community members themselves
Impact on implementers 
  • More focused program implementation
  • Enhanced team spirit
  • Feeling of personal satisfaction over the success of the project

How can the project be replicated?

  • Actual site visitation (lakbay aral)
  • Interview of project leaders/implementers
  • Study of materials on the project
  • Project can also be easily replicated by: 
    > establishing alliance with identified partners; 
    > defining with partners the parameters of the project and indicating what each is willing to contribute; 
    > forging a memorandum of agreement among partners to bind them to their commitment; and 
    > identifying people who know the project well to guide the chief executive and other policy makers in providing funds and other forms of support.

What lessons did the implementors learn?

  • Convergence and resource sharing ensure more successful and sustainable project implementation.
  • Benefits of a project can be maximized and its impact more felt if it is well-planned and implemented according to plan.

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