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Province of South Cotabato

Convergence program inspires 11 families to return in their old place in Lake Sebu town

South Cotabato, Philippines—After a decade of being a “ghost sitio” in a mountainous area in Lake Sebu town, 11 families preferred to go back to their old place and settle for good. The families are inspired to construct their houses after the Convergence Program of the Provincial Government of South Cotabato encouraged  them to return.

Rsidents were forced to move out of Sitio Lambadak, Barangay Ned, Lake Sebu because of armed conflict between the New People’s Army and the government troops. The place was a gateway of lawless people.

Ma. Ana Uy, Community Affairs Officer, said the team first visited Sitio Lambadak in 2018, before the pandemic hit South Cotabato.

“Our journey was not easy,” Uy said, referring to the provincial government’s strategies to win back the trust of the people whose trust issue was deeply rooted to social conflict. Uy, however, said the issue was sensitive.

Despite the prodding issue, the Convergence Program Team aimed to reach out far-flung areas and transform it into a self-sufficient and empowered community.

“We have proved to the people that we are here to build back broken dreams,” Uy said.

The Convergence Program collaborated with the Provincial Disaster, Risk, Reduction and Management Office (PDRR) to nail down the projects for the community.

Uy said the people stressed the importance of road and potable water.

“We are very happy that the governor is supportive of what we do,” she added.



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