St. Hannibal Empowerment Centre

St. Hannibal Empowerment Center (SHEC) is a religious organization of the Rogationists of the Heart of Jesus. It is a community of Spirit-led persons which aims to follow Jesus Christ in his union with his Father and in his proclamation of the kingdom of God. It is an inserted community among the squatters. The goal of SHEC is to empower the poor people of Metro Manila, Philippines, through housing, livelihood, education, health, waste management, youth and values formation.

Location: Pasay City, Metro Manila

Mission: Its mission is to empower the poorest of the poor and catalyze an integral Christian transformation of urban poor communities in collaboration with the local Church by a holistic process that addresses concerns on housing, livelihood, education, health, environment and sanitation, justice and peace, youth formation and values formation. The goals of SHEC consist of assisting in alleviating poverty among urban poor communities in Pasay and other cities in Metro Manila; and building the foundation of community transformation through intensive values formation. Its objectives are, specifically, to facilitate the organization and formation of people’s organization that are self-sufficient and empowered, facilitate the values and spiritual formation and capability building of urban poor leaders, to assist the urban poor / informal settlers of Pasay and other cities in Metro Manila in realizing their dreams of achieving security of tenure through in-city relocation, to facilitate the implementation of economic programs and basic social services in urban poor communities, and to facilitate access to formal education in favor of the poor and deserving students.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Expanding livelihood opportunities for the urban poor

SHEC’s Livelihood Program aims to help the urban poor cope with their financial and economic obligations by expanding opportunities for employment and income generation. The components include skills training, micro-finance, processing/production and marketing of goods, job fairs and referrals, and access to basic commodities.

As of CY 2006, several program components were put on stream. One job fair was held in partnership with Caritas-Manila which benefited mainly young adults from the SHaCC barangays. The St. Hannibal Community Store was opened, with capital assistance from the Office of the Presidential Liaison for Religious Affairs under the Office of the President, and was accredited by the National Food Authority as an outside retailer of grains. Skills training were held on soap-making, reflexology and bead-making with technical assistance from Caritas-Manila and DSWD. The Livelihood Commitee of SHaCC is now organized and is SHEC's main partner in the implementation and management of the Livelihood Program.

For CY 2007, the Program intends to train more people on various processing skills through echo trainings at the BEC levels. It further aims to promote application of the skills gained in the training by producing the products on a micro-cottage level and link up production with markets. The models and approaches to develop micro-finance and cooperatives are also being explored with the purpose of establishing, within the next two years, the most viable approach for SHaCC. Organizational strengthening and capacitation will be intensified to enable the SHaCC to effectively manage the Program even with minimum intervention from SHEC.

The SHEC’s key consideration in advocating any livelihood undertaking is the ability and level of preparedness of the target communities to sustain and own the livelihood intervention. Hence, it is deemed more important to start from where the people are and build increments from there slowly but surely, than to introduce an ambitious project that promises big but detached from the realities of the communities. The strategy is to capitalize on the current resources of the urban poor communities, to make these community-driven, and build the capacities through complementary capital and technical assistance from external sources.


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