4Ps Success Story: Program Helps a Solo Parent and Her Family

The Philippine government has been implementing the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program for many years now. More popularly known as “4Ps,” it is a conditional cash transfer type of program that seeks to uplift the lives of impoverished families.

Implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), 4Ps provides beneficiaries with educational assistance, health assistance, and other benefits. The program has helped numerous Filipinos, including a solo parent and her children in Misamis Occidental. Let us learn more about her inspiring story!

4Ps Success Story Solo Parent
Gracelda Tapayan earns income for her family by sewing and repairing clothes.
Image Credit: fo10.dswd.gov.ph

Solo Parent Overcomes Challenges with Help from 4Ps

This article is based on a report by DSWD Field Office 10 – Northern Mindanao, which featured a story about Gracelda Tapayan, a solo parent and 4Ps beneficiary.

Based in Oroquieta City, Misamis Occidental, Gracelda has been raising her four children on her own. Having grown up in poverty, she completed only the first year of high school. However, this did not deter her from facing life head on and providing for her family.

With her skills in sewing and repairing clothes, Gracelda earns income by stitching garments together and repairing torn clothes. Every morning, after preparing food for her children and sending them off to school, she gets back to work on her sewing machine.

Gracelda’s income as a seamstress was usually not enough and the family struggled financially. Nevertheless, the mother’s resolve to support her children kept her going despite financial hardships.

Becoming a 4Ps Member

Eventually, an opportunity opened new doors for the Tapayan family: becoming part of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps. Since the program provided cash grants for the children’s education and health expenses, they were able to meet other basic needs such as electricity, water bills, food, and other expenses.

The 4Ps program eased the family’s financial burdens. Grace did not have to worry so much about making ends meet; meanwhile, her children could focus more on their studies. Without a doubt, the program had a life-changing impact on the whole family!

Reaping the Rewards of Hard work

Even before they became 4Ps members, Gracelda had been teaching her children about the value of education and hard work. Aware of the family’s financial hardships, her children studied hard and excelled in school. They knew the importance of education in pursuing their dreams!

Soon enough, the family started reaping the rewards of their hard work. Gracelda’s daughter, Mariane Daphne, graduated from college with high academic performance. Later, she passed the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) and is now a substiture Public School Teacher at Taboc Sur Integrated School in Oroquieta City.

Recently, Gracelda’s son, Harold, completed a degree in Marine Science. He graduated as a scholar student; in November 2022, he embarked abroad on an apprenticeship with allowance.

Thanks to their mother’s dedication, plus support from the 4Ps program — the Tapayan children have been doing well, indeed!

Forging Ahead

Having known a life of poverty, Gracelda was determined to provide a bright future for her children. With help from the 4Ps program, she was able to accomplish this. Her family stands out as a shining example of how a social program can transform people’s lives!

4Ps Success Story Solo Parent
Gracelda and her daughter, Mariane Daphne, spend quality time by the coastal waters of Oroquieta City, Misamis Occidental.
Image Credit: fo10.dswd.gov.ph

About the 4Ps Program

Just to give you a quick overview, the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps is a government initiative catering to “the poorest of the poor.” Its target beneficiaries are impoverished Filipino households, specifically those with children ages 0 to 18 years old.

Basically, the 4Ps program aims to improve the educational, health, and economic conditions of its beneficiaries. It provides them with a package of benefits, which include:

  • Educational Assistance. Every month of the school year (10 months), beneficiaries receive PHP 300 per month for each day-care and elementary student, PHP 500 a month for junior high school students, and PHP 700 per month for senior high school students.
  • Health Assistance. Each month, the household receives a grant worth PHP 750 a month for health-related expenses.
  • Rice Subsidy. This amounts to PHP 600.
    Health Insurance. Beneficiaries automatically get insurance coverage under PhilHealth.
  • Priority in Projects. Beneficiaries are prioritizes in programs such as the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) and other government projects.

Typically, financial assistance is given to 4Ps beneficiaries through LandBank ATM cards. In case LandBank is not available in an area, other methods like GCash or rural bank transactions are considered.

How to Join the Program

Are you interested in becoming a 4Ps member? Do you think you may be qualified to be a beneficiary? If so, then here is a list of required documents that you should prepare:

  • Valid IDs – government issued IDs like driver’s license, Philippine Identification (PhilSys) ID, Social Security System (SSS) ID, voter’s ID, etc.
  • Birth Certificate – original birth certificates or certified true copies are necessary for verification of age and relationship
  • Marriage Certificate – may be required to verify your marital status
  • Barangay Certificate – this certifies that you are a resident of the barangay and that your household is within the barangay’s jurisdiction
  • Utility Bills – prepare recent utility bills (e.g. water, electricity, etc.); these may also serve as proof of residence
  • Income Statements – these include payslips, certificate of employment, income tax return (ITR), and other documents that prove your household’s income level
  • Health Records – these include children’s immunization records, health cards, and other documents
  • School Records – these include report cards, certificate of enrollment, school registration forms, etc.

Head to the nearest DSWD Office and inquire about joining the 4Ps. You will be asked to complete the Family Data Form (FDF), which collects data about your household — its members, relationships, ages, and other relevant information.

Once you have completed the Family Data Form and gathered the supporting, prepare for an interview with a social worker. These social workers are part of the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR) or Listahanan.

Aside from interviewing you, the social worker will check and verify your documents to ensure accuracy. They may conduct visits to your households for this purpose.

If you are approved, the social worker will inform you about your inclusion in the 4Ps program. Additional documents may be required to validate your eligibility.

Once enrolled in the program, be sure to follow the conditions, such as regular health check ups for your children, regular attendance to school, participation in Family Development Sessions (FDS), and other activities.

Final Thoughts

In the case of the Tapayan family, the 4Ps program has been successful, indeed! By giving them the financial help that they need, the family is able to fulfill their dreams and improve their lives.

Meanwhile, here are some more 4Ps success stories that you should read about: