The trainee becomes the trainer

Last April, 39-year-old Evelyn Caballero of Barangay Balulang, Cagayan de Oro City, proudly marched onstage along with her husband and daughters during the graduation ceremony at the Philippine Institute of Skills and Development (PISAD).

Evelyn finished the Beauty Care Course of PISAD and passed the National Certificate II accreditation by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) through its Sustainable Livelihood Program has partnered with PISAD and TESDA in providing skills training to beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya.

Pantawid Pamilya is a human development program implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) that invests in the health and education of poor families, primarily those with children aged 0-18. It provides cash grants to partner-beneficiaries who comply with the conditions of sending their children to school, bringing them to health centers for checkups, and attending the monthly Family Development Sessions (FDS).

The six-month training includes skills assessment and certification as well as entrepreneurship development activities. It has two components: training for wage employment and training for self-employment.

Evelyn was among the beneficiaries who participated in the skills training in November 2014 until April 2015.

Paying it forward

This June, Evelyn, the former trainee is now the trainer.

Evelyn is currently training the residents of the DSWD-Field Office X Haven for Women, a facility for victim-survivors of abuse, on manicure, pedicure, foot massage, make-up and spa, every Tuesday and Wednesday. She committed to teach the women for two months starting this June.

Evelyn said she wanted to share the skills she learned to others.

“Gusto kong ibahagi ang biyaya na ipinagkaloob ng DSWD at makatulong sa kapwa sa pamamagitan ng pagbahagi ng aking kaalaman sa Beauty Care (I like to share the blessings DSWD has given me, as well as help other people by imparting my knowledge on Beauty Care).

Re-opening her parlor

Even if Evelyn has a TESDA accreditation and is eligible to work abroad, she has no plans of leaving. She is determined to stay in the country to guide her children during their formative years.

Instead of working abroad, she has her heart set on rebuilding her parlor which was destroyed by Typhoon Sendong in December 2011.

She aims to provide a better life for her family, especially for the education of her three children. Her eldest, Christine Mae is already in college taking up social work.

“Nakatulong talaga ang technical-vocational training na ito sa akin at sa iba pang mga kababayan natin na dati ay hindi nabibigyan na oportunidad para mapaginhawa ang buhay. Ngayon na-eenjoy naming mahihirap ang mga tulong na ito (The training has helped me and our countrymen who were previously not given opportunities like this to improve our lives. But, now, Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries are reaping the benefits of government programs),” Evelyn stated.

DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman admired Evelyn for her willingness to share her skills saying that program beneficiaries are never remiss in expressing their gratitude for the assistance that they continue to receive from the government.

To date, Northern Mindanao has 259,797 Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries who are provided with health and educational assistance, and the opportunity to further improve their economic well-being through the various livelihood assistance provided by the government.

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Introvert, wanderer, blogger, foodie, a hip-hop music writer, and one of the co-founders of a tech start-up company called GigsManila.