By Charmaine P. Tadlas of DSWD
Bukidnon — Maisarah Sarosong of Barangay San Miguel in Maramag, this province, has always been grateful for what the government has done for her and her family.
Coming from a poor family, the 18-year-old recalls that attending school was a challenge for her mother who brought her up and her four siblings singlehandedly. Her father died when they were young.
Although her mother could hardly make ends meet for their family, she was still able to attend college with the help of the Socialize Scholarship of Central Mindanao University which gave a “tuition privilege” for her.
Since the scholarship did not include covering miscellaneous fees required for the students by the said university, she became desperate after finding out that she needed to pay for her financial obligation in school . “Naguol gyud kay kinahanglan nako mabayaran akong utang sa eskwelahan para maka-take ko sa akong final exam (I was worried because I needed to pay for the fees before I can take my final exam),” Maisarah recalled.
Desperate to take her exam and completer her college course, she asked the assistance from the local government unit of Maramag and received educational assistance under the UNLAD Kabataan Program so that she can finish her schooling.
UNLAD Kabataan Program, which is implemented by the local government unit of Maramag and under the technical assistance of the Department of Social Welfare and Development, is aimed at providing developmental, remedial, and preventive services for out-of-school, marginalized, and disadvantaged youths. The same youths under the Program shall also become members of the Pag-asa Youth Association of the Philippins (PYAP).
Soon after her graduation, Maisarah was then hired by the Local Government Unit of Maramag as an administrative aide.
Today, because of her income, she is now able to help her family financially. Her mother now even owns a karenderya which is now their other source of income.
“Without the government’s help, I would have never finished school, nor would our family be able to have a stable income,” Maisarah said.
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