Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD): What You Need to Know

One department in the government that is often heard of but rarely understood is the Department of Social Welfare and Development. However, it’s important for Filipinos to understand what the department does and how it affects their welfare. In this article, we’ll look at some of the history of the development department, why it’s essential to Filipino lives, and what you can do when you face difficulties with your DSWD application or claim benefits.

Some Filipinos working abroad send remittances to their families in the Philippines. However, there still many Filipino workers who are not able to do so. These OFWs make use of government programs such as the DSWD. Although they are frequently asked questions about the DSWD, here are some facts that every OFW needs to know about this department.

DSWD: What You Need to Know About the Department of Social Welfare and Development

What is the Meaning of DSWD?

DSWD stands for Department of Social Welfare and Development in the Philippines.

What is the Purpose of DSWD?

President Corazon C. Aquino’s Executive Order 123, issued in 1987, restructured the MSSD and renamed it the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Executive Order No. 292, also known as the Revised Administration Code of 1987, created the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) name, organizational structure, and functional areas of responsibility, as well as further clarified its statutory jurisdiction.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is the government agency in the Philippines in charge of developing and implementing social welfare and development initiatives.

Functions and Responsibilities of DSWD

The Philippines’ Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is the executive branch of government in responsibility of guaranteeing Filipinos’ social welfare and development.

Law requires the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to develop, administer, and implement comprehensive social welfare programs aimed at improving living conditions and empowering disadvantaged children, youth, women, seniors, people with disabilities, families in crisis or at risk, and communities in need.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is a Philippine government agency responsible for the protection and promotion of Filipinos’ social welfare and development. If you’re curious about what DSWD performs, its functions, programs, and services, please keep reading.

The DSWD protects vulnerable groups such as orphans, abandoned children, street children, individuals with disabilities, the elderly, women, and indigenous peoples. During times of crisis and disaster, the department also provides relief assistance.

Through its initiatives on livelihood, social housing, and cash transfers, the DSWD also strives to prevent and alleviate poverty. They offer a diverse range of programs and services that have an impact on the lives of Filipinos from all walks of life.

List of Programs and Services of DSWD

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) helps underprivileged Filipinos improve their level of living and quality of life by providing welfare and development services. What are the DSWD’s programs and services? To find out, read the sections below.

  1. Adoption and Foster Care

Foster care is a service that is provided by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to children under the age of 18 who have been abandoned, neglected, or mistreated by another person. The provision of legal aid, psychological and social support, and material assistance are all included in this service.

  1. Bottom-Up Budgeting (BUB)

Bottom-Up Budgeting, abbreviated as BUB, is a method that gives local government units, also known as LGUs, the ability to have a direct say in how the budget is created and how their own money is spent. This program is put into practice by the DSWD, which does so by supplying local government units (LGUs) with the education, assistance, and instruments essential to the efficient management of their respective budgets.

  1. Center & Residential Care Facilities

These are 24-hour services that offer an alternative family care arrangement to poor, vulnerable, and disadvantaged individuals or families in crisis.

  1. Disaster Response Operations

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is in charge of the execution of disaster-response operations. This includes providing emergency relief assistance to survivors, as well as their families and communities that have been impacted by tragedies caused by either natural causes or by human actions.

  1. Gender and Development

The term “gender” refers to the relationships that exist between males and females, males and males, males and males, boys and girls, and males and males. Concerns related to gender have an effect on every aspect of development, and the government must take gender into account whenever it plans, finances, implements, monitors, or reviews policies, programs, or initiatives related to development.

  1. International Social Welfare Services for Filipino (ISWSFN)

The International Social Welfare Services for Filipino Citizens is a program that encourages migrant Filipinos and other foreign Filipino nationals who require particular protection to seek assistance from Philippine embassies in their respective destinations. This assistance can range from financial support to legal representation.

  1. Kalahi CIDSS – NCDDP

The Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive Integrated Delivery of Social Services: Kapangyarihan at Kaunlaran sa Barangay (KALAHI-CIDSS: KKB) is a community-driven flagship development project of the government of the Philippines that aims to empower communities through direct participation in community projects aimed at reducing poverty. This project is abbreviated as KKB. It is tasked with the responsibility of implementing asset reforms, providing human development services, building capacity, and participating actively in government.

  1. Listahanan

It is a data management system that identifies those who are poor and pinpoints where in the country they are located. The National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction is the organization in charge of its management (NHTS-PR).


PAMANA (Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan) is an organization that works to increase the number of people in low-income communities who have access to basic social services while simultaneously promoting responsive governance.

  1. Protective Services Program

The Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS) and Assistance to Communities in Needs (ACN) programs provide a variety of interventions to individuals, families, and communities that are experiencing a crisis or a difficult situation. These programs also provide aid to communities that are vulnerable or have been affected by a natural disaster.

  1. Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked Persons (RRPTP)

The Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked Persons (RRTP) is an all-encompassing set of activities and services with the goal of satisfying the beneficiaries’ psychological and economic requirements.

  1. Supplemental Feeding Program

As an additional component of the Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) program, it is a government-sponsored effort that provides children with food in addition to the meals they would otherwise receive.

  1. Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP)

The Sustainable Livelihood Initiative, also known as SLP, is a community-based capacity-building program with the goal of enhancing the socioeconomic standing of program participants.

A two-track software is used in the implementation of SLP. The first path is called the Microenterprise Development Track, and it assists smaller businesses in becoming more financially and organizationally stable. In the meantime, the second path, which is called Work Facilitation, guides participants in the process of finding employment prospects that are suitable for them.

  1. The Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4ps)

The Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, often known as the “4Ps,” is a human development program that invests in the health and education of low-income families, namely those families with children ranging in age from 0 to 18 years old.

  1. DSWD Educational Assistance Program

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) provides educational assistance to qualified individuals who are in need. The program is open to both undergraduate and graduate students with up to PHP 4000 cash benefit. For more information, interested individuals may contact the nearest DSWD office.

DSWD Centers and Institutions Reception and Study Center for Children (RSCC)

Children aged 0 to 6 are welcome at the Reception and Study Center for Children (RSCC), a residential facility that is open around the clock. It provides protection and rehabilitation services to children who have been neglected, abandoned, mistreated, or exploited, as well as children who have special needs, such as children who are at risk and children who are in need of alternative family care. These services are provided through temporary residential care.

In addition to this, it offers appropriate and responsive social work intervention and assistance to meet the needs of very young children who have been abused in regards to their growth and development, as well as their safety and security.

Case management, appropriate placement, and various other child rehabilitation services are all areas in which RSCC wants to see an increase in the level of expertise and efficiency of its staff and service providers.

  1. Technical Assistance and Resource Augmentation Program

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and other organisations involved in international development have collaborated to create a program known as the Technical Assistance and Resource Augmentation Program, or TARP. Through the provision of technical assistance and resources, such as the development of human resources; policy studies; advocacy; research; information dissemination; networking; training of trainers; skill enhancement workshops for local government units (LGUs); monitoring, evaluation, and reporting system of efforts on social protection programmes, this programme aims to strengthen the national capacity to address issues relating to social protection, the reduction of poverty, and vulnerable groups.

  1. Development of Social Technologies

The goal of the outcome-based program known as the Development of Social Technologies is to increase the capacity of local government units (LGUs) and other key stakeholders to carry out social protection activities. Local government units, groups from the civil society, and other partners who are working on social protection concerns can receive monetary support from this initiative. In addition to this, it researches and develops novel solutions to the problem of poverty in the Philippines.

  1. Regulatory Services

The program known as Regulatory Services has the overarching goal of achieving educated and empowered beneficiaries across the board for all social protection activities. Through the recruitment of social protection focal individuals in local government units (LGUs), this initiative also aims to enhance the overall level of service that LGUs deliver to their constituents. It collaborates with other government agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and civil society organizations (CSOs) to implement a system for monitoring, evaluating, and reporting on initiatives related to social protection programs at the local level.

  1. Bangsamoro Umpungan sa Nutrisyon Project

The objective of the Bangsamoro Umpungan sa Nutrisyon Project is to reduce the high incidence of stunted growth and undernutrition among children aged 0 to 5 years old living in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The programme provides food to schoolchildren, pregnant women, and breastfeeding moms in an effort to enhance the overall nutritional status of the population. In addition to this, it seeks to improve the capabilities of local government units (LGUs) in the areas of program planning, implementation, and evaluation of nutrition initiatives.

  1. Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens

A program known as the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Adults (SPIC) is one that offers non-medical financial help on a monthly basis to low-income senior citizens who are at least 60 years old. In addition to this, it seeks to increase the purchasing power of senior citizens in order to decrease the rate of old poverty.

  1. Centenarians Act Implementation

The Centenarians Act of 2016 (RA 10487), also known as the Act to Promote the Well-Being and Social Protection of Filipino Centenarians, is a piece of legislation that was passed in 2016 with the intention of doing just that. A monetary gift, financial support with medical expenses, and a pension are all provided for centenarians by the law. Additionally, it is required that a National Registry for Filipino Centenarians (NRFC) be created in order to document their names along with other personal information such as their dates of birth and places of birth.

  1. Programs and Services for Persons with Disabilities

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is the primary organisation responsible for the development and delivery of programmes and services for people who have disabilities (PWDs). These are the following:

– The Magna Carta for Disabled Persons Act of 2002, which prohibits discrimination against disabled people and their families, offers legal protection to people with disabilities and their families.

– According to the Unified Local Government Code of 1991, local government units are required to guarantee that all of their buildings, facilities, and other infrastructure are accessible to people with disabilities.

  1. Assistance to Individuals with Crisis Situations (AICS)

The Assistance for Individuals in Critical Situations (AICS) program is one that the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) runs to help those who are in dire straits. This covers those who have been impacted by disasters, fires, floods, and other types of catastrophes.

  1. Comprehensive Program for Street Children, Street Families and Indigenous People

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) runs a program called the Comprehensive Program for Street Children, Street Families, and Indigenous People, the purpose of which is to protect street children, street families, and indigenous people from being subjected to acts of violence, abuse, or exploitation. They are given alternate living circumstances as a means of preventing them from engaging in unlawful activities such as begging, prostitution, or the trafficking of drugs.

  1. Residential and Non-Residential Care Program

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has a programme called the Residential and Non-Residential Care Program that aims to provide residential care to children who are victims of abuse, neglect, or exploitation as well as children who are homeless. This programme also provides residential care to children who are in conflict with the law. In addition, it offers non-residential care through child development centers, which are places where parents can bring their kids to participate in daycare activities.

  1. Lingap at Gabay Para sa May Sakit

It is the goal of the Lingap at Gabay Para sa May Sakit program, which is run by the Department of Health and is part of the Lingap at Gabay Para sa May Sakit initiative, to provide free medical care to low-income Filipinos who do not have access to health insurance. Executive Order No. 391 is responsible for the creation of the program, which expanded the coverage of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) from 100 percent poverty-stricken households to all indigent Filipinos who are not covered by any existing government health insurance programme, such as PhilHealth and the Senior Citizens’ Benefits Pension Fund. The program was named the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) after its acronym in Filipino.

  1. Unconditional Cash Transfer Program

The Unconditional Cash Transfer Program, often known as UCTP, is a government-run initiative that gives cash handouts to low-income families in order to enhance their standard of living and reduce the prevalence of poverty. In 2008, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was the one who initially put it into effect by issuing Executive Order No. 696.

  1. Yakap Bayan After Care Program

The Yakap Bayan After Care Program is a government program that aims to provide financial assistance and medical assistance to low-income families who are recipients of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program. This assistance is intended to be provided to families who have a member who is enrolled in the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps). In September of 2011, the programme was made available to participants.

  1. Targeted Cash Transfer Program

The Targeted Cash Transfer Program (TCTP) is a government initiative that offers financial assistance in the form of cash grants to low-income families with the goals of enhancing their living conditions and reducing the prevalence of poverty. The President of the Philippines, Benigno Aquino III, issued Executive Order No. 639 in November 2011, which marked the beginning of the initiative.

DSWD Online Services

DSWD eServices are online application systems that aim to enable direct public access to DSWD frontline services via the internet while also shortening the processing and approval time of DSWD transactions with the public. Additionally, the DSWD eServices aim to reduce the number of paper forms that need to be filled out by the public.

The following types of frontline services have online application, processing, and approval processes that are covered under the DSWD eServices:

Travel Clearance for Minors Travelling Abroad

A new facility known as the DSWD e-Services Travel Clearance for Minors Traveling Abroad makes it possible for minors to travel abroad without the need for written permission from their parents, guardians, or other persons who have custody over them. This permission can be granted electronically through the DSWD e-Services Travel Clearance.

Those individuals who are considering taking a vacation but do not wish to go through the effort of obtaining permission from their parents or legal guardians will find this to be of great assistance.

Registration, Licensing and Accreditation of Social Welfare and Development Agencies (SWDAs) and Service Providers (SPs)

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has released a memorandum circular that outlines the policies and procedures that must be followed in order for social welfare and development agencies (SWDAs) and service providers to be registered, licenced, and accredited (SPs). The primary objective of this is to guarantee that all SWDAs and SPs are up to snuff in terms of meeting specific requirements so that they can deliver high-quality services.

Knowledge Management Portal

The DSWD Knowledge Management Portal is a dynamic resource that was developed to enable the generation of knowledge and the communication of that knowledge among the DSWD and its partners. The DSWD Knowledge Products (KPs) and other educational resources pertaining to social welfare and social protection can be found within the Portal in huge quantities. In the context of the learning community, it is a complex technique for storing and sharing user-centered and responsive print, digital, and audio-visual content.

The DSWD Knowledge Management Portal website is an interactive and virtual facility that is aimed to give learning opportunities beyond geographic borders. Its downloadable tools and databases of communities of practise are examples of this (CoP).

Video: Pres. Marcos Jr. wants DSWD aid program expansion – SONA 2022

In this clip of the first SONA of PBBM, President Marcos Jr. has stated that he wants the Department of Social Welfare and Development to expand its assistance programs. This includes cleaning up the beneficiary list for the 4Ps (Pantawid Pamilya Pilipino Program) so that more Filipinos who are in need can receive support from the government. This is good news for everyone who’s in need of more support from the government, especially during these challenging times amid a pandemic and ongoing crises in the world.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who are the partners of this agency?

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is partnered with various agencies that provide services to the poor, including:

  • Department of Health (DOH)
  • Office of Local Government (OLG)
  • Philippine National Police (PNP)
  • Local Government Units (LGUs)

2. How can I sign up for one of their programs?

Visiting their website at is the quickest and easiest way to sign up for their programs. There have also been instances of DSWD offices that provide sign-ups for their programs in person; therefore, before going to an office, make sure you check out their website first.

3. Where can I go if I need help?

Call the Department of Social Welfare and Development via their emergency hotline (911) or go to their website at if you require assistance with any of the social welfare programs that are available in the Philippines.

4. Are there other government agencies that also advance social welfare and development? If so, which ones?

Yes, the people of the Philippines receive support from a variety of other agencies. The Department of Education, which is the counterpart to the Department of Health, provides free education to all children enrolled in public schools. Additionally, the Department of Health offers free medical care to low-income Filipinos. The Philippine Veterans Affairs Office and the National Council on Senior Citizens are only two of the government institutions in this country that are committed to providing assistance to senior citizens.

5. What is the amount of DSWD cash assistance?

The selected beneficiaries will each get financial assistance in the form of a one-time cash payment in the amount of Three Thousand Pesos (PHP 3,000.00), which will assist them in meeting their fundamental requirements as well as those of their families.

6. How do I access SAP DSWD through the internet?

At the website, recipients of SAP can perform their own self-registration. Accessing the mobile application can be done through either a mobile or desktop browser for users. Click the register button when you are ready to start the process.

NOTE: The ReliefAgad mobile application is only available to people who have been issued a Social Amelioration Card (SAC).

7. Who is eligible for financial support from the DSWD?

families and individuals who are impoverished, vulnerable, disadvantaged, or poor in the informal sector, as defined by the DSWD Listahanan, as well as government employees and contract service workers, and those who are in crisis, as decided by social workers.

8. Who is considered indigent in the Philippines?

Those residents of Metro Manila whose family income does not exceed P14,000.00 per month, as well as residents of other parts of the Philippines whose family income does not exceed P13,000.00 per month.


It is the responsibility of the executive branch of the Philippine government, which is known as the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), to ensure the social welfare and development of the Filipino people.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) got its name, organizational structure, and functional areas of responsibility from the Revised Administration Code of 1987, which is also known as DSWD Executive Order No. 292. According to the law, it is the responsibility of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to create, administer, and put into action comprehensive social welfare programs with the goal of bettering the living conditions of disadvantaged children, youth, women, seniors, people with disabilities, and underserved communities.

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Contact Information

Address: DSWD Building, Constitution Hills, Batasan Complex, Quezon City
Telephone Number: (632) 931-8101 to 07
Facebook Page:
Google Maps Location:

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