May 27, 2024

“Solo parenting is not merely a personal journey; it is a courageous act of resilience and dedication. It is about individuals who, often through unforeseen circumstances, find themselves shouldering the responsibilities of raising children single-handedly. It’s about mothers and fathers who wake up every day, facing challenges head-on, and striving to provide a nurturing environment for their children.”
Councilor Elmer Datuin, chair of the city council’s committee on social services, women and urban poor, declared such at the launching of the city’s Solo Parent Week Celebration city’s during flag-raising rites last week.
He said the passage of Republic Act 11861 or the Expanded Solo Parents Act of 2022 acknowledges these challenges and seeks to alleviate the burdens faced by solo parents by granting additional benefits and privileges like educational assistance, livelihood support and parental leave benefits.
The city government passed an ordinance that provides additional local assistance to solo parents and their children in the city, rooting from RA 8972 or the Solo Parents Welfare Act of 2000, Datuin added.
“Our work does not end with legislation. It begins with awareness about the realities faced by solo parents, dispelling myths and stereotypes that may hinder their access to support. We must foster a culture of empathy and understanding, recognizing the diverse circumstances that lead to solo parenthood. Moreover, we must take tangible steps to ensure that the provisions of the Expanded Solo Parents Act and the ordinance are implemented effectively and efficiently,” he said.
Datuin said the city government spearheaded by the City Social Welfare and Development Office under Liza Bulayungan, the Solo Parents Foundation of Baguio led by president Mary Jonaley Mangal-ip, and his office conducted various activities including a Solo Parent Summit last April 18 at the Baguio City National High School auditorium and a whole day service caravan at Session Road on April 21.
Organized solo parent groups and barangay officials will also conduct their own activities in their respective barangays, he said.
“We are continuously in the process of organizing the solo parents in all barangays so that the organization can serve as a support group to whatever challenges solo parents may encounter. I urge each one of us to stand in solidarity with solo parents, to advocate for their rights and well-being, and to create a society where every family is supported and empowered to flourish,” he stressed. – Gaby B. Keith