DAGUPAN CITY – The city of Dagupan, through its Public Employment Service Office (PESO), awarded stipends or allowances to 50 students who worked under the Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES) of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on May 24.
Each student received P5,172 each from the local government as its 60% contribution to the program after working for 20 days in different city government offices for works that were in line with their respective learning strands or college courses.
The remaining 40% of the stipend will be provided by DOLE soon.
Aside from their 20-day work in different offices, the students also participated in career coaching and health learning events.
A joint project of DOLE and LGU Dagupan, SPES is conducted yearly to help poor but deserving students pursue education by providing them income through their employment during the summer vacation.
The program is open to all qualified high school, college and technical vocational students between ages 15-25.
PESO Manager Jocelyn Siapno disclosed that the most slots opened for students in Central Pangasinan as determined by DOLE were in Dagupan.
Siapno also added that the program hopes to help the students earn money which they can use to buy their school needs when classes open.
“The stipend or allowance that they will receive today will help in paying for their enrollment in the coming school year,” said Siapno during the awarding of the stipend.
Meanwhile, in her message, Mayor Belen T. Fernandez stressed the importance and value of hard work as she related her own working experiences before becoming the mayor.
“The youth today will serve as the example for the future generations. I look forward to working with you in the future. Wala akong ibang hangarin kundi makita ko kayong lahat na maasenso balang araw,” said Fernandez.
Corollary to this, Jerwin Ildefonso, an MBTF scholar under the local government and also SPES beneficiary, expressed his gratitude to the mayor and the local government for continuously providing opportunities to the youth.
“You have given us the opportunity not only to learn from our supervisors in our different departments but to also help our families. You opened the door for us and I can say that I am beyond blessed to be a scholar of our honorable city mayor,” said Ildefonso.
Ildefonso also called on his fellow youth to be active in making their own opportunities despite their circumstances, saying: “We shouldn’t wait for the opportunity to knock on our doors. We should start our initiatives and find a way to help ourselves and our families.” (Verdelle De Vera/CIO)