ZAMBOANGA CITY, June 14, 2022– “Dako kaayo nig tabang sa ako kay tungod gapuyo mi sa bukid nga lisud sudlon sa mga motor, masulod na sa bike ug maka padayon nako sakong pag panarbaho. (The bicycle provided to me is such a huge help, especially since we live in a mountainous area which is close to impossible for motorcycles to reach.)”.

This was the statement of Florante C. Llanda, one of the 65 Authorized Barangay Electricians (ABE) of Zamboanga del Sur II Electric Cooperative (ZAMSURECO II) in Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay, who received a Kabuhayan Starter Kit (KSK) from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) 9 on May 20, 2022 at the Ipil Multi-Purpose Government Center.

“The Labor Department released the amount of Php1,629,875.00 to fund tools and jigs for these beneficiaries. The KSK is composed of a bicycle unit and brand new electrical tools that may be used in their duties as barangay electricians,”said Atty. Roy L. Buenafe, DOLE 9 Regional Director.

The KSK project falls under DOLE’s Integrated Livelihood Program, a livelihood formation strategy which seeks to contribute to poverty reduction and reduce the vulnerability to risks of the working poor, vulnerable and marginalized workers.

Zamboanga Sibugay Field Office Chief Elamsalih Ungad shared that ABEs are not employees of the electric cooperative but are authorized to assist customers to wire inside houses and establishments.

“ABEs earn depending on the type of electrical works their clients demand which may range from 200 to 1,000 pesos. The electric cooperative constantly updates them on good house-wiring practices and new connection guidelines,” Chief Ungad added.

Joining the turn-over ceremony were Vice Mayor, Hon. Ramses Troy C. Olegario, IMAVEMCO General Manager, Caren Joy P. Duran, and Ipil PESO Manager, Maridel O. Ventura.

Andrew J. Canones, one of recipients, said, “Daghan kaayo kog pangandoy human sa pagdawat sa kits, nakita nako nga good quality ang ilang mga gamit ug magamit gyud ni nako sa akong pag panarbaho. (I have a lot of plans for the KSK I received. I can see that the bike and tools are of good quality which can really help me in my work.)

Nagpasalamat kami sa DOLE nga gitagaan mig kahigayunan maka apil ani nga programa aron among mga pangandoy mahimog reality. (We are grateful to DOLE for giving us the opportunity to avail the program so we can turn our dreams into reality). END