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Metamorphosis_Kalahi-CIDSS Compendium 2015

31 Bucay, Abra: Taking

31 Bucay, Abra: Taking the Challenge on Good Governance By Strelle C. Quejado Abra, one of the six provinces of the Cordillera Administrative Region, has been home to political controversies. For years, the province has been tagged with several negative stereotypical titles. To Abrenians, Abra is a home to the great mountains, scenic rivers, rich cultural history, appetizing delicacies, and exquisite products. To others however, Abra, despite their efforts and strategies in promoting its positive side, they still see the province as one the most dangerous in the North due to its politics and their peace and order situation. Abra has an IRA of not less than PhP 20-Million for each of the 27 municipalities as per data from the Department of Budget and Management for the year 2012. However, according to interviews with some of the community volunteers, such word as “development” is hardly ever heard in the province because improvement on roads, infrastructure, and their social and economic status is barely felt by the Abrenians. Bucay, Abra and Kalahi-CIDSS Bucay, Abra is a 5th class municipality with 21 barangays, and a home to 17,126 people as per 2010 NSO Cencus of Population. With Abra’s political history, negative perception to the government officials in the province is inevitable. Bucay, Abra’s Municipal Local Government Unit (MLGU) has already been in a long pursuit away from the stereotypes of Abra politicians. It was year 2012, Bucay Municipal Mayor Victorino Baroña, Jr. signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the Department of Social Welfare and Development for their engagement with the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) program of the agency. Kalahi-CIDSS, one of the core poverty reduction programs of the government, started on 2003. “Para akong nagkaroon ng kakampi noong dumating ang Kalahi-CIDSS (I feel like I gained an ally when Kalahi-CIDSS came),” Mayor Baroña said. “Eto na yung inaantay natin na para sa tao, para sa development (This is what we have been waiting for, for the people, for

Under the Mango Tree. Bucay Community Volunteers show that they do not need halls or covered courts to hold barangay assemblies. Development does not need to be complicated, all they need is a tree to shade them from the sun’s heat* development),” he added. With the Kalahi-CIDSS Area Coordinating Team (ACT), the people of Bucay was able to gather primary information on their respective communities, evaluate their current situation, and identify possible solutions for their problems and through these, the community was able to identify sub-projects that would be implemented in their barangays. Kalahi-CIDSS follows the community-driven development (CDD) process through the Community Empowerment Activity Cycle (CEAC), the 5-stage cycle which involves the community in local planning, budgeting, implementing, and project monitoring. “Idi, haan mi kayat nga mamati iti Kalahi-CIDSS, ta adda iti pammati mi ditoy nga ‘Diak pati, diak kita’. Ngem gapu ta nakita mi iti naaramid iti Kalahi-CIDSS iti dadduma nga barangay ditoy Bucay, kinayat mi nga mairaman kami met ita programa. (Before, we have doubts on Kalahi-CIDSS because we have an expression here, “to see is to believe”. Then we saw what Kalahi-CIDSS has done to other barangays here in Bucay, and we have wanted to 32

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