The Livelihood Assistance Grants (LAG) is the financial assistance granted to qualified Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) beneficiaries whose livelihoods were affected by the declaration of community quarantine. The SLP, on the other hand, is the capability-building program for the poor, vulnerable and marginalized families and communities to help improve their socio-economic conditions through accessing and acquiring necessary assets to engage in and maintain thriving livelihoods. The SLP is one of the core programs of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) providing livelihood assistance during natural or human-induced disasters.
The LAG is provided in Joint Memorandum Circular No. 1, which was issued by various government agencies to provide for social amelioration programs (see List of Social Amelioration Programs) intended to mitigate the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 health crisis. This is pursuant to the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (Republic Act No. 11469) and its Implementing Directives.
The LAG aims to assist the SLP beneficiaries’ recovery from economic losses and can be used as a seed capital to start-up new or enhance existing feasible and viable micro-enterprises, purchase inputs or starter kits needed for the identified micro-enterprise and/or for employment-related activities such as, but not limited to, transportation / fare expenses.
The LAG will only be provided to SLP beneficiary families having at least one (1) member who is a worker in the informal sector, and is displaced by reason of the declaration. The family must be in the masterlist endorsed by the LGU to the DSWD Field Office (FO) and its eligibility for LAG shall be subject to the assessment of the DSWD staff. The maximum amount of LAG per eligible family shall not exceed Fifteen Thousand Pesos (PhP 15,000). A family shall be qualified to avail the assistance only once, regardless of the number of family members belonging to the identified sectors.
Release of Assistance
The LAG will be in the form of financial assistance which may be released to the beneficiary either in cash or individual check. The beneficiary shall undergo the processes required by the SLP for the release of LAG, in accordance with the existing guidelines of the SLP.
Families assessed to be qualified recipients of LAG shall be provided with the grant as soon as the declaration of public health emergency or community quarantine, whichever comes first, is lifted. However, in case proper authorities require, the DSWD may distribute the LAG to the beneficiaries during the quarantine period.
The LAG shall be directly released to the recipients through cash pay-out by the Special Disbursing Officers (SDOs) designated by the DSWD CO or FO. The release of LAG can be through house-to-house or on a designated site of pay-out, or through any mode that is most convenient and safe for both the SDOs and the beneficiaries.
Nothing in the provisions of these guidelines shall limit the DSWD from resorting to Section 872 of the General Appropriations Act of 2020 to further effectuate the provisions hereof.
[See also: Social Amelioration Programs for the Community Quarantine by Reason of COVID-19; Emergency Subsidy Program (ESP) during the Community Quarantine); Target Beneficiaries of the Government Social Amelioration Program for COVID-19; Documentary Requirements to Avail of Government Social Amelioration Programs for COVID-19]