Nobility of the poor

October 21, 2018

Believe it or not dignity and nobility thrive among the poor.

In fact, they can practice more compassion than those who are socio-economically better off.

And there is a simple explanation for this—empathy.

People who have lived in poverty and misery can easily relate with their kind.

When able to move up the socio-economic ladder for even just a few steps, they are more than willing to help those still caught in the poverty trap.

Around 5,000 beneficiaries of the government’s “Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program” have waived their cash grants for others to benefit as their lives have dramatically improved, the Department of Social Welfare and Development said on Friday.

During the media forum at the Richville Hotel, Mandaluyong City, the DSWD presented several 4Ps beneficiaries, whose lives have been improved with the government cash grant program.

A 4Ps beneficiary, Irene Ramirez of Hermosa, Bataan, said their lives before the Pantawid was very different compared to what it is now.

“Kumakain lang ng karne kung Linggo. Sa gabi lang nagkakaroon ng masarap na ulam kasi sama-sama kami. Nanghihingi ng uniporme para sa mga anak namin,” Ramirez said.

She added that her husband took every possible job he could get just to make ends meet.

“Kahit hindi nya alam, pinasok nya. Nagwelder sya para lang mabuhay nya kami. (sa kasamaang palad), hindi tayo lahat ay nabibigyan ng oportunidad,” Ramirez said.

In 2017, her family won the DSWD's “Huwarang Pantawid Pamilya”, pocketing P20,000 cash prize, which she invested in the rice selling business. Their investment grew to P100,000 in one year.

Another 4Ps beneficiary, Verdelor Oconer of Pasig City, expressed her gratitude to the Pantawid, noting that because of the cash grant program, they earned additional income for the allowance of their children and they were able to buy something for them.

“Iba ang may alam, sa walang alam. Dahil sa 4Ps, ang pinaka importante ang knowledge, na kung saan nalaman ko ang VAWC law. Kung papaano po-protektahan ang kababaihan, ang mga bata,” Oconer said.

She added that they were given free scholarship at the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority. After studying cookery, she was able to go into her own bakery business.

She noted that under the 4Ps, she also developed her personal disposition and became a parent-leader who helped others for their personal development.