In 2011, the PSHF disbursed 202 livelihood loans to individuals and groups for a total disbursement of 2,020,000 pesos (US$48,000). A further 224,500 pesos ($5,300) was disbursed in medical loan assistance to nine individuals and 17 students received loans for vocational study.
The PSHF provides loans, usually 3,000 - 5,000 pesos at the start, repayable in one year with 15 percent interest. Loans are for small business ventures such as fish vending, cooking, farming, fishing, vending, furniture-making, 'sari-sari' store. Project loans are classified into five types; individual or family loan, pair loan, group loan, community loan and educational loan. A partnership with responsibilities. The PSHF staff will assist a client with every stage of their application process, especially in helping them make a good and a realistic business plan.
Furthermore, our assistance will not end upon the release of their loan. We are committed to helping them monitor their business to make sure they are heading towards sustainability, and that eventually they can become self-reliant.
As far as the client's responsibilities are concerned, we expect them to pay their dues as per the conditions of their contract, to enable us to recycle their repayments to assist other families.
For a clear understanding of how we process applications for loans in the PSHF, the steps are outlined below.
1) Orientation attendance. We hold orientations for prospective loan applicants in the office or project area. Every office has a regular orientation schedule; Bacolod holds orientations quarterly and Bohol every 2nd Friday of the month. Orientations in Cebu and Oriental are done after a good number of people have enquired about the PSHF.
2) Submission of application letter. An application letter stating the applicant's family's circumstances and why the PSHF could help them, is the second step in applying for a loan. This is submitted right after the orientation.
3) Screening and notification of applicants. Using the application letters applicants will then be screened for qualification. The applicants will receive a notice, whether they qualify or not after 30 days.
4) Submission of the Loan Application Form. An applicant will then be asked to fill out a PSHF loan application form. This will enable us to get to know them better. In this same form, there is a section for them to write a simple business plan explaining their proposed projects.
5) Submission of Barangay Clearance. We require our applicants to get a barangay clearance certificate which will be attached to the completed loan application form. This is to prove the good moral character of the applicant, and to allow the intervention of the village council in the event of repayment problems.
6) A PSHF staff member will be assigned to an applicant to do the following: Make an on-site visit and take photos of them with their family for the sponsor. Conduct an interview with them, discuss and appraise their business. Write up and submit their life story in a project proposal to the PSHF head office for approval. Signing of contract, release of loan and payment terms. The applicant will be immediately informed if their loan has been approved and they will be requested to come to the office for the release of their loan. He or she will read the contract out loud in the presence of the PSHF staff and then sign three copies. Repayments will start a month later.
Leonila Garcia's daughtereading the contract to her in Bohol.
Celia Santiago receiving her loan for her sari-sari in Bacolod.
Salvacion Hipanao happily pays her monthly due in Bacolod.