BAGUIO CITY, Dec. 28 --The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Cordillera Office reminds the public that Presidential Decree (PD) No. 1563 or the Mendicancy Law of 1978 is still being observed during the Christmas season.
PD 1563 aims to prevent the practice of mendicancy and the exploitation of infants and children through such. It also aims to provide rehabilitation for mendicants through the provision of comprehensive developmental package of services.
“By just giving alms to the beggars or mendicants on the streets, we are not assured that our financial help will really benefit them. It is better if we coordinate with groups or offices that cater to the marginalized sector,” DSWD-CAR OIC Regional Director Janet P. Armas said.
Meanwhile, DSWD Memorandum Circular 17 Series of 2014 gives guidance to the Department in providing solicitation permit to individuals, groups, organizations, or offices that wish to solicit monetary donation for public and charitable purposes.
It aims to safeguard donors as well as potential beneficiaries from abuse by implementing guidelines and sanctions related to the conduct of fund raising activities and handling of funds gathered as a result of such activities.
“Solicitation permits help us monitor the authenticity of fund raising activities in our community. Through these, we are able to ensure that the raised money will be used for the welfare of the identified beneficiaries and not for the personal interest of the solicitor,” Armas added.
Any group or organization issued with a solicitation permit is required to submit fund utilization report, list of donors and beneficiaries, and other pertinent documents upon the expiry of issued permit. DSWD Offices issue permits for regional or national fund solicitation activities. The validity of the said permits shall not exceed six months or one year, respectively. Fund raising activities covering only one municipality or city will be handled by the concerned local government unit.
Individuals or organizations interested to apply for a permit may visit the DSWD-CAR at #40 North Drive, Baguio City or may call (074) 444-32-62 and look for Clarissa Padio.
Complaints against individuals or organizations conducting illegal solicitation may be addressed to the DSWD Office or LGU in the area of concern. Legal sanctions may be implemented as stipulated in PD 1564 or the Solicitation Permit Law. (Nerizza Faye G. Villanueva/ DSWD-CAR)