Barangay Mahayag of Mahaplag town is one of the waylaid villages in the province of Leyte. Living in poverty makes it harder for Josefina Kileste especially in her old age and nobody to turn to in times of needs.
Josefina is 90 years old. She had 9 children but 3 died already. She said that her surviving children could no longer support her needs as they too have families of their own.
In her story, she said she is thankful that she was included in the list of Social Pension beneficiaries identified through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Listahan, a list of poor households surveyed through the National Housing Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR).
Josefina said that she is happy because she can buy her medicine already with the P500 pesos that she receives every month. “Malipay ko ug dako kay makatabang man ang social pension sa ako pagtinda-tinda kay ako halin adlaw-adlaw ibayad man pud sa ako inutang,” the pensioner said.
“I am happy because the social pension is a big help in addition to my small business as my income is only enough to pay my loans.”
Josefina has put up a small variety store so she can have something to eat and buy some of her important needs.
The Social Pension Program of the government is intended for the elderly who are frail, sickly and disabled without support from their family members and has no pension from the government or private entity.
For this year, Josefina is among the 87,920 beneficiaries in Eastern Visayas listed as social pensioners receiving monthly subsidy from the DSWD.