“Sweet corn is sweet if not from a child laborer’s sweat,” said Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE)-6 Regional Director Atty. Sixto T. Rodriguez Jr. upon knowing that the child laborers toiled in the corn production at Brgy. Luca, Ajuy, Iloilo.
The campaign to eliminate child labor reached Iloilo’s northern town recently through the delivery of livelihood projects that is expected to alleviate poverty among the child workers’ families.
Twenty-seven (27) parents of identified child laborers received a total of Php580,062 financial assistance for additional livelihood that will augment their income from farming and fishing.
The town promises a lot of potentials but the parents of child laborers who were involved in corn and rice farming, lack sufficient resources to start or to enhance a livelihood.
The limited income made the children work in the farm which affects their psychological and emotional well-being.
DOLE, with its mandate for the child laborers’ welfare and protection, provided the much-needed assistance to uplift their economic condition.
For some women beneficiaries, sari-sari store, food vending, vegetable gardening and rice retailing are suitable projects that would augment the income of their husbands.
Others ventured into frozen foods retailing, feeds retailing and dry goods retailing. One was provided with a diesel engine and fishing gears.
Rodriguez emphasized the importance of livelihood to keep the child away from hazardous works. He further, advised for cooperation and dedication of the parents to make the livelihood sustainable and to focus on their child’s future.
DOLE RO6-Iloilo Field Office Head Melissa S. Navarra and DOLE Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Program Focal Cecilia S. Acebuque turned over the check to Ajuy Mayor Jett C. Rojas on behalf of the beneficiaries.