THE COUNCIL for the Welfare of Children (CWC) conferred 42 city and municipalities in Eastern Visayas with the Seal of Child-Friendly Local Governance (SCFLG), a recognition to local government units for promoting national and international commitments in upholding the rights of a child.

The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) named the cities of Tacloban, Maasin and Catbalogan and 39 municipalities – three in Leyte, 16 in Southern Leyte, two in Biliran, seven in Eastern Samar, seven in Samar and four in Northern Samar – as among the conferees of the 2021 SCFLG.

The 42 LGUs were conferred with the recognition following the 2021 Child-Friendly Local Governance Audit. The LGUs were audited based on 12 criteria that include percentage reduction on under-five mortality rate, under-six with below normal weight, increase in the number of 3- to 4-year old children attending day care services, completion rate for elementary schooling and absence of child labor, among others.

The 2021 SCFLG conferees are Tacloban City, Alangalang, Barugo and Inopacan in Leyte; Silago, Libangon, Hinunangan, Padre Burgos, Liloan, Malitbog, Maasin City, Macrohon, and Hinundayan in Southern Leyte; and Culaba and Cabucgayan in Biliran.

In Eastern Samar, the conferees are Llorente, Hernani, Salcedo, Sulat, Maydolong, Maslog and Can-Avid. In Samar, the towns of Basey, Jiabong, Hinabangan, Tarangnan, Paranas, Pinabacdao, Motiong and Catbalogan; and in Northern Samar, the towns of Catubig, Pambujan, San Roque and Gamay.

The SCFLG started on October 8, 2014 with the CWC’s launching of “Child-Friendly Philippines” as an advocacy and programming framework in response to the Child 21 and 2nd National Plan of Action for Children and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). The Child-Friendly Philippines framework promotes child-friendly local governance wherein local government units (LGUs) give priority to children in their planning, budgeting, legislation and delivery of services and is able to assure that all children enjoy their rights classified as survival, development, protection and participation. By Elmer Recuerdo (EV Mail October 31-November 6, 2022 issue)