Department of Social Welfare and Development

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Department of
Social Welfare and Development

Logo of the Department of Social Welfare and Development

Organized: November 1, 1939
Secretary: Corazon Soliman
Budget: P2.286 billion (2005 official)

The Philippines Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) (Filipino: Kagawaran ng Kagalingang Panlipunan at Pagpapaunlad) is the executive department of the Philippine Government which is responsible for protecting the social welfare rights of Filipinos and promoting social development. The DSWD is currently under the leadership of Department Secretary Dinky Soliman.



After the Second World War, the concept of social welfare as a basic function of the state materialized. The Philippine Government assumed the major responsibility for social welfare.

In 1915, the Public Welfare Board (PWB) was created to study, coordinate and regulate all government and private groups engaged in social services. In 1921, it was abolished and replaced by the Bureau of Public Welfare, which was under the Department of Public Instruction.

In 1939, the Commonwealth Act No. 439 created the Department of Health and Public Welfare. In 1941, other than coordinating services of public and private social welfare institutions, it also managed public child-caring institutions and the provision of child welfare services.

The Department was abolished in 1947 by President Manuel A. Roxas. He replaced it with the Social Welfare Commission (SWC) under the Office of the President.

In 1948, President Elpidio Quirino created the President's Action Committee on Social Amelioration (PACSA) for socio-economic reforms to counteract social unrest. In 1951, the SWC and PACSA merged into Social Welfare Administration (SWA) and started an integrated public welfare program.

In 1968, the Republic Act 5416, or the Social Welfare Act of 1986, elevated the SWA into a Department under the executive branch of the government. It gave the SWA an equal status with other social agencies like health and education.

In 1976, President Ferdinand Marcos signed the Presidential Decree No. 994, which renamed the Department of Social Welfare into the Department of Social Services and Development (DSSD), giving it a more accurate identity.

In 1978, in line with the change in the form of government (from presidential to parliamentary), the DSSD was renamed the Ministry of Social Services and Development (MSSD).

Under the Executive Order 123 signed by President Corazon C. Aquino in 1987, MSSD was renamed Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). Executive Order No. 292, or the Revised Administration Code of 1987, established DSWD's name, organizational structure and functional areas of responsibility which further defined its statutory authority.

The passage of Republic Act 7160 or the Local Government Code of 1991 effected the devolution of DSWD basic services to local government units.

In 1998, President Joseph Ejercito Estrada issued Executive Order No. 15 and redirected the functions and operations of DSWD to strengthen its repositioning efforts.

In 2003, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued Executive Order No. 15, which defined DSWD's mandate, roles, powers and functions.

On 28 January 2005, the Department of Budget and Management approved DSWD's Rationalization and Streamlining Plan (RSP) for implementation in the next five years. Its RSP emphasized the Department's shift in policy, functions and programs in line with its steering role.

Organizational structure

DSWD Organizational Chart

The Office of the Secretary (OSEC) consists of the Secretary, Undersecretaries, Assistant Secretaries and the personnel in their immediate offices. The OSEC group is composed of:

  • OSEC proper
    • the Secretary and her direct staff
  • Internal Audit Services (IAS) - assists management in all matters relating to operations and management control
    • Management Audit Division – conducts separate evaluation of the effectiveness of the internal controls of management systems
    • Operations Audit Division - evaluates the effectiveness, efficiency and economy of operations
  • Social Marketing Service (SMS) - undertakes advocacy, social marketing and networking activities
    • Public Affairs and Advocacy Division (PAAD) - implements the department’s publicity and advocacy plans
    • Media Production Division (MPD) - conceptualizes, develops, packages and produces Effective Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials using popular language
    • Communication Development and Research Division (CDRD) - undertakes study and assessment of the knowledge, attitude and practice of DSWD publics relative to social welfare and development
  • Office of Strategy Management (OSM) - devises, integrates and coordinates the development, enhancement and execution of organizational strategies to ensure achievement of DSWD’s vision, mission and goals

Operations and Programs Group (OPG)

OPG follows a focused approach in the development, implementation and management of social welfare and development programs and services. Under the OPG are:

  • Social Technology Bureau - responsible for the development and enhancement of customer-driven social protection technologies
    • Family and Women Welfare Technology Development Division
    • Children and Youth Welfare Technology Development Division
    • Older Persons/Persons with Disabilities/Indigenous Peoples/Internally Displaced Persons Welfare Technology Development Division
    • ISWSFN and Special Projects Units
  • Protective Services Bureau - supervises, monitors and provides technical assistance and resource augmentation for responsive and efficient implementation of social welfare and development (SWD) programs and projects
    • Community-Based Welfare and Development Program Division
    • Center/Residential Care Services Division
    • Risk Reduction and Management Program Division
    • Alternative Parental Care Program Division
  • Poverty Reduction Programs Bureau (PRPB) – manages SWD core programs and projects for poverty reduction

Policy and Plans Group (PPG)

PPG is responsible for communicating, advocating, coordinating and collaborating on matters relating to policy development and plan formulation. Under the PPG are:

  • Policy Development and Planning Bureau (PDPB) - formulates, monitors and evaluates policies and plans of the department and of the social protection sector along social welfare and development and social safety nets
    • Planning and Monitoring Division
    • Policy and Research Division
    • External Affairs Division
  • Department of Legislative Liaison Office (DLLO) - promotes the priority legislative agenda of the Department and other proposed legislative measures certified as urgent by the President
  • National Household Targeting Office (NHTO) - ensures the development and adoption of relevant unified criteria that identifies poor households who would be beneficiaries of social protection programs
    • Information and Technology Unit
    • Statistics Unit
    • Advocacy Unit
    • Monitoring and Coordinating Unit
  • Information and Communication Technology Management Service (ICTMS) - supports the Department’s social protection and poverty alleviation strategies for improved quality of life
    • Information Systems Development Division (ISDD)
    • Systems Administration and Integration Division (SAID)

Institutional Development Group

The IDG initiates and sustains the development, coordination and synergy among and in between DSWD intermediaries and stakeholders. Under the IDG are:

  • Capacity Building Bureau - enhances the competencies of staff and partners (intermediaries and stakeholders) of DSWD
    • Capacity Building Division
    • Knowledge Management Division
  • Human Resource Development Bureau (HRDB) - addresses the Department’s manpower requirements and ensures the well-being of personnel towards greater employee productivity and overall organizational effectiveness
    • Human Resource Planning and Performance Management Division
    • Career Development and Employee Relations Division
  • Standards Bureau (SB) - fulfills the regulatory and quality assurance roles of the Department
    • Standards Development Division
    • Standards Compliance Monitoring Division
  • Resource Generation and Management Office (RGMO) - generates and delivers financial resources and technical assistance for DSWD

General Administration & Support Services Group

The GASSG provides leadership, staff expertise and support in the management/administration of financial resources, facilities and the physical infrastructure, personnel administration, legal management and assistance, supplies and other logistical management of procurement activities. Under the GASSG are:

  • Administrative Service - provides, maintains and manages logistical requirements to support the Department in attaining its vision and mission
    • Asset/Property Management Division
    • General Services Division
    • Personnel Administration Division
  • Bids and Awards Committee Secretariat - manages and monitors procurement activities and processes for the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC)
  • Financial Management Service - prepares and implements an effective financial plan to support the Department’s program, activities and projects aimed at achieving its desired outcome and mandate
    • Budget Division
    • Accounting Division
    • Cash Division
  • Legal Service - provides technical assistance and legal support to the Department’s various offices, bureaus, services, units and personnel
    • Legal Management Division
    • Legal Assistance Division

List of Secretaries of Social Welfare and Development

(*) Acting Capacity

# Name Term Began Term Ended President
Minister of Welfare
1 Gracio Gonzaga January 21,1899 May 7, 1899 Emilio Aguinaldo
Secretary of Public Instruction, Health, and Public Welfare
2 Sergio Osmeña 1941 1944 Manuel Quezon
Secretary of Justice, Labor and Welfare
* Mariano A. Eraña 1944 1945 Sergio Osmena
Secretary of Health and Public Welfare
3 Basilio Valdes 1945 1945 Sergio Osmena
4 Jose Locsin 1945 1946
5 Antonio Villarama 1946 1953 Manuel Roxas
5 Elpidio Quirino
Minister of Human Settlements
6 Imelda Marcos 1978 1986 Ferdinand Marcos
Secretary of Social Welfare and Development
7 Mita Pardo de Tavera 1987 1992 Corazon C. Aquino
8 Corazon Alma De Leon 1992 1998 Fidel Ramos
9 Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo 1998 2000 Joseph Estrada
10 Dulce Saguisag 2000 2001
11 Corazon Soliman 2001 2005 Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
12 Esperanza Cabral 2005 2009
13 Celia Yangco 2009 June 30, 2010
(14) Corazon Soliman June 30, 2010 Incumbent Benigno Simeon Aquino III


  • Formulate policies and plans to provide direction for the development and delivery of social welfare and development services
  • Develops and enriches existing programs and services especially for the children and youth, women, family and communities, solo parents, older persons and persons with disabilities (PWDs)
  • Registers, licenses and accredits individuals and groups involved in social welfare and development services; sets standards and monitors individuals and groups if they comply with these standards
  • Provides technical assistance and capability building to intermediaries or third-party groups
  • Provides social protection of the poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged sector


See also


  • “About Us”.Republic of the Philippines Department of Social Welfare and Development.(Accessed on 11 October 2012).
  • “Organizational and Functions”.Republic of the Philippines Department of Social Welfare and Development.(Accessed on 11 October 2012).
  • “History of DSWD”.Republic of the Philippines Department of Social Welfare and Development.(Accessed on 11 October 2012).
  • “Center-based”.Republic of the Philippines Department of Social Welfare and Development.(Accessed on 11 October 2012).
  • “Programs”.Republic of the Philippines Department of Social Welfare and Development.(Accessed on 11 October 2012).



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