A team from the Ministry of Human Settlements and Development, the Housing Arm of the BARMM, led by Director General Esmael W. Ebrahim welcomed and met with the group from the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Philippines, led by Jonas Tetangco, Country Representative, at the Conference Room, MHSD Regional Office, Bangsamoro Government Center, Cotabato City on March 5, 2024.

The coordination meeting paved the way for the reaffirmation of the parties’ commitment and discussion of the ways forward to further the partnership.

Aside from confirming their unwavering commitment to the BARMM by strengthening the partnership for housing and human settlement, many collaborative activities were discussed throughout the meeting.

A highlight activity to be carried out by the parties is the turnover of two housing units located in Brgy. Kalanganan II, Cotabato City from the CRS to the MHSD.

The local government of Cotabato City recommended two beneficiaries to receive the units that served as products of the pilot testing of the housing and human settlement management manual crafted by the MHSD with the technical assistance of CRS.

One of the topics discussed at the meeting was the CRS Asia regional online meeting, where a representative from the MHSD is expected to attend to showcase the CRS’s local leadership work with government partners. CRS colleagues across all programs in Asia are expected to attend the meeting.

Other topics discussed were the Memorandum of Understanding between the parties that will extend the partnership for another two years, the Asia Shelter Forum to be held in October, and the MHSD’s recently conducted awarding of 50 housing units in Brgy. Simsiman of the BARMM’s Special Geographic Area (SGA) in Pigcawayan, North Cotabato.