The Quezon City government has nearly completed the distribution of an estimated P1.2 billion in financial assistance to a targeted 600,000 vulnerable residents of the city through the “Kalingang QC” program.
Mayor Joy Belmonte said the city handed P2,000 financial assistance to each of 599,744 individuals from vulnerable sectors and those whose livelihoods were badly affected by the enforcement of enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Ito’y katuparan ng ating pangako na walang sektor na maiiwan sa harap ng pandemya na nararanasan natin ngayon,” said Belmonte.
The program initially covered drivers of public utility jeeps, tricycles, pedicabs, taxis, Transport Network Vehicle Service (TNVS), and UV Express, market vendors, laborers, household workers, and other daily wage earners affected by the ECQ.
Belmonte decided to expand the coverage to include solo parents, lactating mothers, persons with disability (PWDs), senior citizens , scholars and sellers of dry goods and cellular phone accessories.
The city government earlier earmarked P200 million for 100,000 initial beneficiaries of the program, but the coverage expansion prompted it to increase funds through a supplemental budget in order to assist more people in need.
“Kailangang matiyak na lahat ay makakatanggap ng ayuda kaya tayo humingi ng tulong mula sa Sanggunian Panlungsod na pinangungunahan ni Vice Mayor Gian Sotto para magpasa ng supplemental budget,” Belmonte said.
Aside from the Kalingang QC program, the local government also initiated its own social amelioration program (SAP), where families left out of the national government’s SAP stand to receive P4,000 financial assistance.
Latest data shows that 19,011 beneficiaries from 23 barangays have already claimed financial aid from the city.
While it has been downgraded to general community quarantine (GCQ), the city will continue the distribution of its QC SAP to deserving recipients after the DSWD has completed its pay-out to the additional families they included in their program, to avoid duplication.