Press Release
November 3, 2023

Bong Go assists micro-entrepreneurs in Bangar, La Union as he pushes for more livelihood opportunities to help poor Filipinos

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go is advocating for enhanced government measures to generate additional employment prospects for impoverished Filipinos rebounding from multiple crises.

Recently, Go's team extended assistance to 54 micro-entrepreneurs at the Bangar municipal covered court in Bangar, La Union on Thursday, October 26. Each beneficiary received masks and snacks while select recipients were given pairs of shoes, shirts, and balls for basketball and volleyball.

Aside from Go's assistance, a team from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) provided negosyo kits to qualified beneficiaries through a livelihood program that Go earlier advocated for and continues to support to help more affected communities recover from calamities and other crises.

"Itong matatanggap ninyong tulong pangkabuhayan, gamitin niyo po sa pagbubukas o pagpapalakas ng inyong negosyo. Palaguin niyo ang inyong negosyo at dalhin ang mga kita sa inyong pamilya. Mas masarap po sa pakiramdam kung pinaghirapan ninyo ang perang inyong kikitain," Go said in a video message.

Meanwhile, Go also conveyed his hopeful outlook for the economy's resurgence, and cited the government's commitment to creating additional livelihood opportunities, particularly for the disadvantaged sector.

"Alam ko pong napakahirap ng panahon ngayon at marami pang nawalan ng trabaho pero huwag po kayong mawalan ng pag-asa dahil ginagawa po ng gobyerno ang lahat upang kayo po ay matulungan at makaahon muli," reaffirmed Go.

With this, Go is one of the authors and co-sponsors of Republic Act No. 11960 or the One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines Act. The law shall assist and capacitate Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in developing new, innovative, and more complex products and services through significant improvement in the areas of quality, product development, design, packaging, standards compliance, marketability, production capability, brand development, sustainability, and securing licenses, product registration and other market authorization, among others.

Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, said he remains dedicated to enhancing the country's health sector. He then advised the public to take advantage of the medical assistance programs offered at Malasakit Centers including one located in Ilocos Training and Regional Medical Center (ITRMC) in San Fernando City, La Union.

A brainchild of Go, the Malasakit Centers program was institutionalized through the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019, which he principally sponsored and authored in the Senate to help indigent patients with their medical expenses in public hospitals.

To date, there are 159 operational centers that have successfully helped more than seven million Filipinos nationwide.

Go was also instrumental in the passage of a law that mandated an increase in ITRMC's capacity from 300 to 800 beds.

He was also instrumental in pushing for the funding of more than 600 Super Health Centers in strategic locations nationwide as identified by the Department of Health (DOH) including four in La Union.

According to Go, Super Health Centers are designed to focus on primary care, consultation, and early detection of diseases, further strengthening the healthcare sector in the country, especially in rural communities. It will also help decongest hospitals.

Go also shared the recent enactment into law of the Regional Specialty Centers Act. The legislation, which Go principally sponsored and is one of the authors in the Senate, aims to bring specialized medical care closer to the grassroots by establishing specialty centers in existing regional hospitals.

With this, Go expressed his confidence that the government's health services will be more accessible to Filipinos in need, especially in the grassroots.

"Marami po sa mga kababayan natin sa iba't ibang sulok ng Pilipinas ang walang sapat na health facilities na makakagamot sa kanilang mga karamdaman. Kaya importante na mailapit natin ang serbisyong medikal mula gobyerno sa mga taong nangangailangan nito," he stressed.

During the event, La Union Governor Raphaelle Ortega-David extended her gratitude towards Go for his continuous support in the province.

"Hi senator! Always thank you for keeping La Union in your heart. Maraming, maraming salamat po sa lahat na po ng programa na pinasok din n'yo ngayon. And, of course, including po ito ngayon na pinuntahan po natin personally because I wanted to show my appreciation po talaga sa pinapasok n'yo po always dito sa La Union," the governor said.

Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, underscored his support for the progress of the province. In this regard, Go supported the construction and improvement of roads in Aringay, Bagulin, Burgos, Naguilan, Rosario, San Gabriel and San Fernando City. He also backed the rehabilitation and improvement of the provincial capitol; construction of a multipurpose center in Caba and San Fernando City; construction of a slope protection structure in Bacnotan; acquisition of multipurpose vehicles and rehabilitation of a multipurpose building in Balaoan; and acquisition of an ambulance and a multipurpose vehicle for the municipal government of Bangar.

On October 25, Go's team also aided micro-entrepreneurs from the town of Luna.

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