De La Salle University

The University's Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA) is its social development arm responsible for promoting the Lasallian Social Development principles in the Community. COSCA, via its programs, engages the Lasallian community to actualize faith in action through service and solidarity with the poor. COSCA aims to develop awareness in the Community of the problems and issues that abound in the country. It encourages members of the University to examine their social responsibilities in the light of the Christian faith. To complement the limited financial resources of the University, COSCA raises funds for the programs it supports, most of which are aimed at those belonging t...
May 23, 2012

expanding project coverage

The Initiative for the Street Families of Manila is formally on its 2nd year of operation. It has been able to provide basic services to a sizable number of street dwellers from district 5, Manila. It was also during this period that the project has learned more insights on how to best provide for the development of the said sector and in effect, reduce their numbers while at the same time increasing their productivity and most of all, remove them from the streets.

For this year 2012, the Initiative for the Street Families of Manila will be solely implemented by the Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA) in partnership with external institutions. One of the strategies for a quicker reintegration process for the street dwellers is to introduce to them a supplemental source of livelihood by recycling plastic bags and transforming these into high end items. Most of our partner street families are familar with this since most are into scavenging whatever they can find on the streets and in garbage bins for items they can sell to junkshops. One notable difference is that they can now take in plastic bags, which are normally not being bought from the street dwellers. The project will now, because of a partnership with the Invisible Sisters, will be creating fashion and other high end items from these plastic bags to be sold to the general public. The ultimate aim of this approach is to equip the adult street dwellers with skills on how to crochet using the strips of recycled plastic bags instead of yarn.

To expedite the community reintegration process for the street families, they will be partnered with the members from the basic ecclesial community (BEC) of the Our Lady of the Assumption Parish. It is hoped that from the socialization process that will occur, a sense of security and belongingness will come upon the street dwellers and in effect, allow them to reintegrate within established barangays. 

May 17, 2012

update on the street families project (may 2012)

A Medical and Dental Mission was held last March 17, 2012 at the The Bagong Tuluyan: Center for Street Families. At least 25 individual street families were able to access free medical services and medicines. Free dental consultation was also provided by the Philippine Dental Association – Manila Chapter.

From the period April to May 2012, the project has also provided the partner street families with the following capacity building activities: session on children and women's rights and skills on pedicure/manicure and hair cutting. One project beneficiary is currently undergoing counselling with a volunteer psychiatrist.

The vegetable garden is still on going and effectively providing viands for the partner street families during their lean periods. Vegetables like eggplant and alukbati, a local vine are often being harvested and cooked to augment their meals.

The project is now preparing the repatriation of 2 street families from Manila to Leyte, a province in the Visasyas area. Our social worker has made all the necessary communication with the local Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) office in Leyte to ensure proper turnover of project partners. Part of the process is to ensure that the street families will be received by their own relatives and resettled at their communities.

The project is also preparing for the expansion of the Alternative Learning System to include out of school youth and adult learners from the nearby brgys of 718 and 720 in Manila. In anticipation of the influx of learners, the center will be renovating the main room to accomodate more tables, chairs and blackboards. The project will also partner with the Knowledge Channel, an NGO who are into education and provision of technology to deliver educational modules.



May 15, 2012

enhancing DRR capacities of partner LGUs

The Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA), the social development unit of De La Salle University Manila with Local Government Units of Bagac, Bataan and Lian, Batangas recently conducted a capability building activity designed to enhance the LGU's Disaster Risk Reduction and Management knowledge and skills. 

Local chief executives as well as their department heads from the pilot municipalities participated in the said activity last March 20-22, 2012 at the province of Albay. The activity was facilitated by Ms. Isabel Lanada from COSCA. 

Albay Governor Joey Salceda and Legazpi Mayor Geraldine Rosal welcomed the 42 participants from Bagac and Lian.  The CDRRMC officers of Legazpi City provided input on their DRRM practices. Relevant programs and approaches utilizing social networking platforms, alarm and early warning systems, organization of local Barangay Disaster Risk Reduction Committees and field visits in hazard prone sites were shown and explained to the participants during the 4 day-activity. 

By the end of the activity, officials of 2 pilot municipalities expressed the need to bring back to their communities learnings from the event. “Dapat talagang paghandaan at masistematize din sa aming munisipalidad” (there is a need to really prepare and systematize our tasks in our municipality) according to the Mayor of Lian, Batangas Mayor Osita P. Vergara.  

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