Press Releases
Family of “Marawi Hero” from La Union gets aid from DOLE-RO I


The wife of a “Marawi Hero” from Bail, Sto. Tomas, La Union received assistance from the Department of Labor and Employment-Regional Office I on June 1. 

Mylene Villanueva, 32 years old, was able to put up her sari-sari store after receiving P20 thousand worth of goods from the staff of the La Union Field Office of the DOLE-RO I. 

Mayor Marietta Carbonell and some local government unit department heads were present to grace the simple awarding ceremony held at the municipal hall. 

The assistance comes under the DOLE’s Comprehensive Social Benefits Program on Killed In Action/Wounded In Action Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP).  The program offers various interventions such as job referrals and livelihood assistance for the immediate members/beneficiary of the family of KIA/WIA AFP/PNP personnel. 

Mylene is the wife of Sergeant Mark Clayson Villanueva, a 36-year-old member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.  Sergeant Mark was wounded while fighting Maute rebels alongside nine other soldiers during the Marawi Siege in the middle of 2017. 

“Hindi madali ang maging katuwang ng isang sundalo,” a tearful Mylene Villanueva stated, continuing:  

“Pero naiintindihan ko na bilang sundalo, ang una niyang tungkulin ay pagsilbihan ang ating bansa.” 

As a soldier’s wife, Mylene understands more than anybody else the perils of her husband’s profession, she added. 

In December 2017 – or just six months after recovering from the trauma of the Marawi battle – Mark and Mylene lost their youngest child to meningitis.  It was a painful chapter in their life as husband and wife – one which once led Mark to think whether it could have been different if he was beside his family looking after them. 

But he knew deeply that there are duties he had sworn to fulfill, even if those duties come at the expense of himself and his family.

“Maraming salamat po sa DOLE sa ipinagkaloob nilang tulong pangkabuhayan.  Makakaasa po kayong ito ay aking palalaguin,” a truly elated Mylene said. 

The assistance comes with GSIS social insurance coverage. 

For Mylene, the project is an entrepreneurial opportunity that can help improve their family’s economic condition. 

At the very least, the additional income from the project will help defray the family expenses especially that they have three children to support, she said. 

On the other hand, some 25 holders of NC II on Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW) in Aringay received P500 thousand assistance under the DOLE’s Kabuhayan Starter kit (KSK) on the same date.  

With start-up kits from the KSK, the beneficiaries can operate their self-employment undertakings that are intended to bring about improved socio-economic well-being. END/Arly Sta. Ana-Valdez

RD Nat V. Lacambra
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