The ten family-recipients of the P10,000 cash aid showcasing the “Ayuda Bill” attending to a virtual program with Congressman Allan Peter Cayetano and fellow bill proponent Bulacan First District Rep. Jonathan Sy-Alvarado at his district office in Calumpit on Saturday. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig

CALUMPIT—Still being heard in Congress and has yet to be passed as a law, the “Ayuda Bill,” House Bill No. 8597 which seeks to provide each Filipino family with a one-time P10,000 assistance or P1,500 per family member affected of the COVID 19 pandemic this year has already benefited ten poorest of the poor families in Bulacan.

Bulacan First District Rep. Jonathan Sy-Alvarado, one of the proponents of the bill said that pending its approval, the P10,000 cash aid to the group of Maricris Peralta, 39, from Barangay Sto, Nino this town, a former canteen attendant in Baguio City who lost job because of the pandemic were sourced through private donations to his group in Congress called the “Back To Service“(BTS).  

Bulacan First District Rep. Jonathan Sy-Alvarado during media interview. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig.

Former House Speaker Allan Peter Cayetano heads the BTS which filed the bill in February for all Filipino families whether rich or poor to benefit. . 

Former Senator, now Congressman Alan Peter Cayetano. Photo courtesy of the Office of Cong. Alan Peter Cayetano

The Ayuda Bill which is for the national government to allot multi-billion worth of cash to about 40 million families from the 130 million Filipinos is now at the Economic Affairs Committee in Congress, Alvarado told reporters. 

The group has already provided for Quezon City, Caloocan City, Marikina, Camarines Sur, Laguna and Cavite residents.

Alvarado explained that the COVID 19 breaks the barrier between rich and poor as well off families no longer exempt themselves from accepting “ayudas” be in cash or in kind.

The Ayuda Bill is like the Bayanihan Act 1 and 2 which has a separate funding from the national government. 

Alvarado said the funds to be spared in this aid program is only a small figure from the P4.3 Trillion budget of the national government. 

He hopes the bill will be passed this year for all the Filipinos to benefit. 

The congressman explained that the the P10,000 will be the spark plug of the Philippine economy in these dark days because of the pandemic. People will have money to pay for tricycle ride, money to buy lugaw and carinderias will be able to open again and have a revolving fund and hire attendants. That would mean job down at the bottom line of economic cycle. Unlike today that we have a dead economy, he further explained. 

Maricris Peralta, from Barangay Sto. Nino, Calumpit, a canteen worker in Baguio City with eight children and fisherman husband lost her job because of the pandemic shows  the P10,000 cash and food packs she received from private donors of “Back To Service” (BTS) solon led by Congressman Allan Peter Cayetano. The congressman with Bulacan First District Rep. Jonathan Sy-Alvarado and other BTS solons authored the “Ayuda Bill”. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig

Peralta and nine other family beneficiaries from the first district were fetched from their respective homes and were brought to Alvarado’s district office to receive the aid. Cayetano through a virtual program encouraged them to remain steadfast with their goals and dreams for their families despite the economic devastation COVID 19 brought to the lives of many people.