DUMANGAS, Iloilo, March 27 (PNA) — Beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program here recently attended a session on ‘Saving a Marriage.”

Clad in their t-shits bearing Pantawid Pamilya logo, husbands and wives attended the session handled by Pastor Jimson Mortel of Philippine General Council of Assemblies of God.

The session, a monthly activity called Family Development Session (FDS) being implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in partnership of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), is a condition that must be complied among beneficiaries.

“I usually attend the sessions. I am having fun attending the activities because we learn a lot. I also enjoy listening to the lectures,” said 43-year-old Catherine Barba of Barangay (village0 Tabucan, Dumangas.

Catherine is only one of the nearly 50 participants of the session. They had a short workshop on their likes and dislikes on their partner’s behavior and traits.

She and her group mates scribbled, “nurturing to children, workaholic, not talkative” as their likes among husbands. On their dislikes, they wrote, “lazy, engaging in gambling, irresponsible, poor hygiene, and going home late.”

Mortel, facilitator, then read their entries and both husband and wives learned on the likes and dislikes of their partners.

The topic was only one of the many modules being taught to beneficiaries of the program during FDS. Other subjects include children’s rights, parenting, disaster preparedness and husband-wife relationship.

“Before, I was not confident of myself. Now, I feel confident,” said another participant, Felipa Albao, who also enjoys attending FDS.

Attendance of FDS sessions has been cited by many beneficiaries as very useful in improving their personality. Some of the victims of typhoon Yolanda even said that the disaster preparedness sessions during FDS helped them to better prepare their families when typhoon lashed Western Visayas.

In the region, attendance rate among beneficiaries on FDS was pegged at 96 percent in 2013.

Pantawid Pamilya is the Philippine government’s conditional cash transfer program to send children to school and keep them healthy.

Under the program, cash grants on both education and health are given to the beneficiaries provided that they have to comply with conditions such as at least 85 percent attendance in school, immunization among infants, attendance to FDS, and pre and post-natal care among pregnant women.(PNA)