Davao City is 'Most Child-Friendly' anew

Subscribe Now April 19, 2013 at 08:15am

Davao bagged anew the Presidential Award for the Most Child Friendly City for highly-urbanized city category, besting four other cities in the country.

Maria Luisa Bermudo, City Social Services and Development Office (CSSDO) head, said in a phone interview that Davao bested the cities of Olongapo, Butuan, Bacolod and Mandaluyong.

With the win, Davao spoiled Mandaluyong's bid for Hall of Fame. It bagged the award the last two years and would have become a Hall of Famer had it won a third straight time.

Bermudo, along with 15 barangay leaders, attended the 10th year of National Awarding, Presidential Awarding for Child Friendly Municipalities and Cities conducted at Ang Bahay ng Alumni, Magsaysay Avenue corner Balagtas, UP Diliman, Quezon City, on Wednesday.

No less than President Benigno Aquino III announced the good news to other 21 local government unit finalists.

Davao received a Presidential trophy and P300,000.

Liwayway Caligdong, assistant department head of the CSSDO, said this was the third time Davao City won the award.

Davao was a recipient of the award for two consecutive years from 1998 to 1999, but failed to repeat the feat following the alleged resurgence of the shadowy Davao Death Squad (DDS).

The Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) initiated the Presidential Award for the Child-Friendly Municipalities and Cities pursuant to Executive Order 184 entitled “Establishing the Presidential Award for the Child-Friendly Municipalities and Cities” issued on December 13, 1999.

The Presidential Award is conferred to deserving local government units in recognition of their vital role in the sustained promotion of children’s rights to survival, development, protection and participation as well as in ensuring child-friendly governance.

The Presidential Award is open to all cities and municipalities, with five categories -- first to third class municipalities, fourth to sixth class municipalities, component cities, independent component cities, and highly urbanized cities.

Caligdong said Davao’s best advantage over the other cities is its landmark legislation on Children's Welfare Code of 1994, which has the Monitoring Minors Traveling Alone (MMTA) that prohibits youngsters to travel without their parents or guardians.

She said other programs of the city for the youth include the Early Childhood Care and Development, Barangay Council for Children, and Local Development Plan for Children, among others.

"Lipay gyud kayo kay ginahandaan man gyud na sa city nga award," she said, recognizing the efforts and contribution of other national government agencies, non-government organizations, and up to the barangay level.

Caligdong said Davao also won the regional award in October 2012 and bagged P50,000, which was used for the Balay Dangpanan in Marilog District.

The assistant department head said the P300,000 cash award will be set aside for the education on wheels program of the city for the three districts.

Lawyer Tristan Dwight Domingo, acting city administrator, said it is now a challenge for Davao to maintain the title as the Most Child-Friendly City for the next two consecutive years, striving to bag the hall of fame award.

"Dili ta mag relax lang, padayon ta. Finding ways to achieve the same," he said.

He said the award highlights Davao’s brand as the Most Livable City in the country.

"Nagpasabot lang nga most livable city gyud ta dili lang for adults, but labi na gyud sa atong mga kabatan-unan," Domingo said. "If it is not the best, but at least one of the best cities."

He said the award is not for the city only, but it also recognizes the contribution of the barangay leaders.

Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio was also elated with the prestigious recognition the city achieved.

"Yehey! I would like to thank the DILG (Department of Interior and Local Government), DepEd (Department of Education), CWC, all the barangays and their respective councils headed by their barangay captain, CSSDO and all other City Hall offices and everybody who helped make it happen," she said.

"It's not an ordinary feat. It was an uphill journey to get the Presidential Award but with all the support we came out on top of the heap! Yey!" she told Sun.Star Davao in a text message. (Sun.Star Davao/Sunnex)

Source: sunstar.com.ph

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