ARMM committed to special emergency education recovery program

The Mindanao Examiner Regional Newspaper - - News - (Bureau of Public Information)

MAGUINDANAO – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) through its flagship initiative Humanitarian and Development Action Program (ARMM-HDAP) remains committed in the implementation of special emergency education recovery program (SEERP) in 31 conflict-affected schools in Maguindanao province, officials said.

Hadja Bai Taya Aplal, Director II of the region’s Department of Education (DEPED-ARMM) and focal person of the SEERP, said based on the monitoring, assessment, and validation of the regional government’s education cluster, 12,215 students were affected by the conflict brought about by the Mamasapano incident in January 2015.

“There are more than 12,000 affected students after the Mamasapano incident, so with the new program of the ARMM, we conducted several activities to help and encourage students to go to school,” Aplal said.

The HDAP assessment in January 2016 involving 10,457 students for school year 2015-2016, a total of 5,389 were identified as malnourished and slow learners in 31 schools in Maguindanao division 1.

Aplal said her office conducted a series of training and capability building for school principals, teachers, school nurses, guidance councilors, and school planning officers.

Under the SEERP, Deped conducts psychosocial support services, psychosocial first aid, food supplementation – two snacks and a lunch – and declaring the beneficiary institutions as Salam (Peace) schools.

“Through SEERP, students are motivated to go to school. The psychosocial support services alleviate the physical and physiological attributes of the affected students and the community and parents help us too in sustaining the supplementary feeding actvities,” Aplal said.

ARMM has allocated P13.2 million for the implementation of the support services education recovery program and special education recovery program.

The ARMM-HDAP is a project of the regional government under the Hataman administration. It implements various government initiatives specifically, relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction of both “horizontal” – in reference to school buildings, houses, and health centers – and “vertical” infrastructures – or roads and bridges, and provision of livelihood programs that will promote peace and help the situation in calamity-affected communities specifically in 15 Maguindanao towns.

Atty. Laisa Alamia, ARMM Executive Secretary, said HDAP has two major components: humanitarian and development. She explained that under the humanitarian component, the program provides immediate humanitarian response until such time that the displaced families have returned and recovered from the disaster. The development component covers the rehabilitation and development of the affected areas.

The conflict-affected municipalities in Maguindanao are Shariff Aguak, Pagatin (Datu Saudi Ampatuan), Mamasapano, Shariff Saydona Mustapha, Datu Salibo, Talitay, Talayan, Datu Anggal Midtimbang, Guindulungan, Datu Piang, Rajah Buayan, Datu Unsay Ampatuan, Datu Hoffer Ampatuan, Datu Abdullah Sangki and Datu Odin Sinsuat.

“We hope that through this (ARMM-HDAP), we will be able to uplift and alleviate the situation of the people in the 2nd district of Maguindanao despite the conflict that is happening right now,” Atty. Alamia said.

Secretary Alamia added that the regional government will strictly monitor the implementation of projects under HDAP. “We have a Project Management Office that will look up and monitor project implementation and we expect the different agencies to comply in time and in accordance with plans that have been drafted,” she said.

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