ATI-SSS Partnership Growing Stronger

ATI Deputy Director Renato Dela Cruz with SSS officials at the 2016 Balikat ng Bayan Awards.

QUEZON CITY – The Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) was one of the government agencies that received special recognition during this year’s Social Security System (SSS) Balikat ng Bayan Awards.

Recognizing the support of ATI's efforts to ensure the social protection of farmers, fishermen and other vulnerable workers from the informal sector, the SSS awarded the 2016 Balikat ng Bayan Special Citation as Full Subsidy Program Partner to the Institute. “We deeply appreciate the efforts of our partners in helping the SSS fulfill its mandate to extend meaningful social security protection to Filipino workers all over the world. The Balikat ng Bayan Awards is our way of saying thank you to them for their unrelenting support for SSS,” the awards’ Committee Chairperson and SSS Senior Vice President Judy Frances See said.

In March 2014, the SSS and the ATI forged a partnership in providing social protection for small farmers, fishers, rural women, young farmers, indigenous people, among others. Hence, around 250 Community Extension Workers (CEWs) and members of the Rural-based Organizations (RBOs) are currently part of the insurance coverage which entitles them to lifetime pensions under the Self-Employed Program of the SSS. The ATI subsidizes the monthly contributions of the beneficiaries based on the initial agreed monthly salary credit of Php 3,000. This is in recognition of the important role of the CEWs and RBOs as strategic partners in the implementation of extension and training activities.

The agency aims to continually strengthen its partnership with the SSS and other insurance companies. It also has programs with Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) and the Department of Finance, one of which is on the concept of microinsurance. In 2015, the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization also recognized the ATI for its efforts to provide social protection program for the small farmers.

Engr. Renato Dela Cruz of ATI-Partnership and Accreditation Division received the plaque from SSS officials during the SSS Balikat ng Bayan Awarding ceremony during the SSS 59th anniversaary celebration held last September 2, 2016 at the SSS Main Building, East Avenue in Diliman, Quezon City. – With reports from Larry Illich Souribio and SSS