Laua-an, Antique—In this rural town, the future shines bright for 21-year-old college student Marvie Ann Berdin.
Only a few years away from attaining her dream of becoming a civil engineer, Marvie continues to brave through numerous hardships and financial difficulties, thanks to the support she receives from various government agencies.
Marvie has had to face life’s challenges at a young age, with unemployed parents who could barely make ends meet, let alone finance the education of their eight children.
But Marvie was not deterred from attending elementary school, even if it meant travelling by foot for two hours and crossing a river every day. She also took on several jobs to support her education, including being a part-time house helper and a student assistant.
Augmenting their family income for daily expenses and medication for her ill father, Marvie’s mother, Maricel, regularly receives government subsidy as a beneficiary of the conditional cash transfer program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development.
When previously, Maricel had to wait in line at the covered court in their town for almost the entire day just to get the cash aid during payouts, digital innovation has now made it easier for her to receive the subsidy.
Since receiving a prepaid card from the Land Bank of the Philippines, Maricel has been heading to the nearest LandBank Branch in San Jose, Antique to withdraw the cash subsidy conveniently and safely in just a few minutes.
“Dahil hindi marunong si mama mag-withdraw sa ATM, mas pinipili niya na mag-withdraw over-the-counter sa LandBank Branch. Palagi siyang inaalalayan ng mga staff doon,” Marvie says.
Recently, Maricel prefers to cash-out their subsidy from the Barbaza Multi-Purpose Cooperative, an agent banking partner operating on behalf of LandBank, which caters to their town.
Apart from cash withdrawal from LandBank branches and ATMs, CCT beneficiaries can also use the LandBank CCT prepaid cards to make cashless purchases in groceries and drugstores, among others.
The state-run bank also converted the LandBank CCT prepaid cards into transaction accounts, which provides access to additional services such as cash loading via LandBank branches and cash deposit machines, receiving of funds from other agencies through institutional top-up, from LandBank accounts through the bank’s mobile banking application, iAccess, and ATMs and from other bank accounts via InstaPay.
Along with the cash assistance the family receives, Marvie also receives a stipend to support her studies as a grantee of the Tertiary Education Subsidy Program of the Commission on Higher Education and the Unified Student Financial Assistance System for Tertiary Education.
Marvie goes to the LandBank Antique Branch to encash the checks she receives under the TES Program. Soon, she will benefit from LandBank’s partnership with CHED and UniFAST, with the ongoing distribution of LandBank CHED-UniFAST prepaid cards to TES beneficiaries.
The LandBank CHED-UniFAST prepaid card is a general-purpose reloadable card that functions as an electronic wallet and can be used as a debit or ATM card, allowing TES beneficiaries to conveniently withdraw their student allowance from LandBank ATMs, branches and agent banking partners nationwide.
They can also use the LandBank CHED-UniFAST prepaid cards for cashless payments, electronic fund transfers, and online account management, among others.
“Salamat sa LANDBANK sa magandang serbisyo upang maihatid ang suporta ng gobyerno sa akin at sa aking pamilya, lalo na ngayon panahon ng pandemya. Malaking tulong ang inyong produkto at serbisyo upang maipagpatuloy ko ang aking pag-aaral,” says Marvie.
Marvie won second runner-up in the MyTEStimony photo contest of LandBank and CHED-UniFAST, where she photographed herself studying at home, with only a gas lamp as her only source of light. With the cash prize, she was able to buy a mobile phone that she uses for her online classes.
As part of its commitment of serving the nation, LandBank is the main distribution arm of financial assistance under the National Government’s social protection programs, in partnership with various government agencies.