The Department of Social Welfare and Development reminded the public to be careful in donating to groups or individuals pooling resources for victims of Typhoon Ulysses.
The DSWD said Presidential Decree 1564 or the Solicitation Permit Law mandates all individuals and groups interested to conduct fund raising activities to secure a permit from the agency or its local counterparts.
This is to safeguard donors and 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.
“We would like to ask the public to be cautious in providing their donations especially to individuals and groups claiming to help the affected communities. They can ask for the solicitation permits to ensure the authenticity of fund raising activities”, DSWD-Cordillera Director Leo L. Quintilla said.
Any group or organization issued with a solicitation permit is required to submit a fund utilization report, list of donors and beneficiaries, and other pertinent documents upon the expiry of the permit.
DSWD offices issue permits for regional or national fund solicitation activities whose validity should not exceed six months or one year, respectively.
Fund raising activities covering only one municipality or city will be handled by the local government unit concerned.
Non-government organizations, civil society organizations, and private entities that wish to conduct fund raising activities are also regulated by the DSWD.
Religious institutions, barangay projects, and other institutions that were created to conduct fund campaign for charitable or public welfare purposes are exempt from securing permits.
“The DSWD issues authority to conduct fund raising activities when institutions are able to present certification or registration and other necessary documents. 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,” Quintilla said.
“We would already like to extend our gratitude to all those who are interested to provide donations to the families affected by typhoon Ulysses not just in the Cordillera but also in the nearby regions especially in Cagayan. Our office is open for donations such as brand new clothes, canned goods, and other ready to eat food, drinking water, sleeping, and hygiene essentials. Your donations will not just help a family, it will remind them of the true spirit of bayanihan, which the Cordillerans are always known for,” Quintilla added.
Donors and volunteers may directly coordinate with their respective local social welfare and development offices or the DSWD-Cordillera at 40 North Drive Baguio City or call 661-0430 or 0917-872-0252, 0917-871-9893, or 0919-065-5365 to 68. – Nerizza Faye G. Villanueva-Trinidad