Philippines

Source: Social Watch Philippines

Members of nongovernment organizations and urban poor groups today fixed up a Christmas Tree in front of the Philippine Coconut Authority in Quezon City in time for the Bicameral Conference Committee´s meeting to finalize the 2011 national budget.
"This is our Christmas Tree of Hope and Reform. We are decorating this with Christmas Balls expressing our call for the Bicameral Conference Committee members to give the poor people a merry Christmas by realigning lump sum items in the budget to increase the budget for pro-poor programs," said Marivic Raquiza, convenor of Social Watch Philippines (SWP) which organized the Alternative Budget Initiative, the network globally acknowledged for initiating Congress-citizens´ partnerships for alternative budget proposals.

By Leila B. Salaverria
Philippine Daily Inquirer

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In time for the 10th anniversary of the MDGs, SWP published a citizen’s Shadow Report on the state of MDG progress in the country. The report entitled “Winning the numbers, losing the war: The other MDG report 2010” found that the Philippines is in a worse poverty situation in 2010 than when it started on the MDGs in 2000. “We are losing the war on poverty. Many would still be left behind, and their numbers are simply staggering by any count,” said Isagani Serrano, SWP convenor and editor of the citizens’ report on the MDGs.

Since it was set-up in 1997, Social Watch Philippines (SWP) has annually put forward a strategy of advocacy, awareness-building, monitoring, organizational development and networking. Based in Quezon City, one of the major cities in Metro Manila, the network that started with twenty seven civil society organizations and individuals has now grown to embrace more than a hundred citizens’ group, networks  and individuals. 

Source: Business Mirror

“Stop making highways that lead to nowhere and waiting sheds waiting for no one” said former national treasurer and lead convenor of Social Watch in The Philippines, Prof. Leonor Briones, who advised lawmakers to align their pork barrel (goverment funds allocated to legislators for local projects) to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that eradicate hunger and poverty in their respective areas of jurisdiction.

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