SHFC - About us - President's Corner
(SHFC Operational Planning, March 18-19, 2011, Tagaytay City)

Fellow workers of SHFC,

I do not know how you feel but I certainly feel awkward. For more than 20 years, you were sitting up here while I would be down there pleading my advocacies for a better CMP, in the process oftentimes criticizing NHMFC and SHFC.

Contrary to what many of you may think, I accepted this position with much hesitation and fear. Many times I have asked myself many questions. Can I  perform what I have demanded? Will my immediate boss, the Vice President, give me his support? Will you, the Senior Management, the Division Chiefs, the Technical and other Staff of SHFC , give me your cooperation and friendship?

Although these questions were not adequately answered, I decided to abandon my comfort zone as Executive Director for life of the Foundation for the Development of the Urban Poor. I reminded myself of 1986. I was a Director of the Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor. We have just toppled the Marcos dictatorship and we have given our people much pride and much hope. 

Nonetheless so many, literally hundreds of thousands of urban poor people were being evicted.  We asked ourselves, must they have to remain as squatters in their own country? We answered a BIG NO without any hesitation. The Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor advocated for the Presidential Proclamation of the National Government Center, a 44 hectare portion of Fort Bonifacio and Sagrado Familia in San Juan. And President Cory Aquino said yes.

We went to HUDCC and pleaded that the Unified Home Lending Program for the formal sector be also made available for the informal sector. They who have less in life should have more in law. And the venerable Teodoro Kalaw Katigbak said yes. GLAD was created for Pag-Ibig, Cooperative Housing for HIGC and CMP for NHMFC, then the most well funded government housing finance corporation.

CMP has gone a long way. Despite its problems, it is viewed worldwide as the most innovative and the most effective housing program for the urban poor. Despite its problems, CMP has provided security of tenure for more than 200,000 urban poor families or 1,000,000 urban poor people who would have suffered forcible eviction without CMP.  1,000,000 men, women and children like you and me and our children now have security of tenure in sites that are livable and accessible to their places of work.

We can do more. CMP is among the topmost priority of President Aquino and Vice President Binay.  As of the moment, money is not a problem. And they assure us, money will not be a problem. And significantly the money that is now available do not have the constraints in 1988 when we had to develop a financing system that would benefit the informal sector but which must however abide with systems and procedures of a formal financing system. There is even hope that we can change our name from Social Housing Finance Corporation to Social Housing Development Corporation thus allowing us to live more easily to our original mandate of helping promote the development of the urban poor by providing them access to housing finance. The problem is our institutional capacity to do more.

We have to do more. And SHFC will do more. Today I offer you my hands of friendship. I do not intend to stay long. I started working with the poor at the age of 21. Now I am 56. 35 years in this type of work is already too much for anyone especially for a woman with 5 beautiful children. When I leave, I do hope that we remain friends. But not just ordinary friends but as partners who have managed to move CMP to do more, much much more than we have ever done in the past.  

Yes we need to do more. Even as we speak at this very moment, literally millions of urban poor people face the threat of forcible eviction. They are people like you and me. I think it was Portia in the Merchant of Venice who said, “If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? ... And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”

Yes these millions of urban poor people are people like you and me and our children and our friends. We can save them from the vicious misery of forcible eviction. Yes we can save them and together we will save them.  And when we succeed we shall also be giving SHFC the prestige and respect that we deserve.

Thank you and a pleasant day to all of you.



1. A framework for housing. Housing is not a mere commodity, product, or structure. It is a human right that the government has the responsibility to promote and protect. Housing can also be a process of community empowerment. Security of tenure, which CMP makes possible, is seen as an entry point to organize, strengthen, and empower a community. Housing finance, on the other hand, is a strategy rather than the objective. CMP is primary an asset reform program, a poverty reduction program using housing finance as a strategy. Board member Teodoro Katigbak, in a meeting said that the SHFC should stress the “social” in its name rather than the “finance” part.

2. Vision for SHFC. Urban population stands at 59 million or 63 percent of total national population (est. 94 million, as of 2010) or 11.8 million households. Informal settlers more or less constitute 20 percent of the urban population or 2.4 million urban poor households/ informal settler families. Assuming a population growth rate of 3 percent every year (higher than national growth rate of 2%), urban poor household population is projected to reach 2.8 informal settler families in 2016. CMP’s current target of 195,000 households can cover the 190,000 households residing in privately-owned lots. But given the magnitude of ISFs in the country, CMP can do more. For example, CMP can offer off-site projects for families in danger areas and those to be affected by government infrastructure projects.
  National Population (annual average growth rate 2%) Percent Urban Urban Population (using annual  growth rate of 3%) Urban Household Population (average of 5 members) Urban Poor/ ISF Household Population (assuming 20%)
2007 88,000,000        
2008 89,760,000        
2009 91,555,200        
2010 93,386,304 0.63 58,833,372 11,766,674 2,353,335
2011 95,254,030 0.64 60,598,373 12,119,675 2,423,935
2012 97,159,111 0.65 62,416,324 12,483,265 2,496,653
2013 99,102,293 0.67 64,288,814 12,857,763 2,571,553
2014 101,084,339 0.68 66,217,478 13,243,496 2,648,699
2015 103,106,026 0.69 68,204,002 13,640,800 2,728,160
2016 105,168,146 0.71 70,250,122 14,050,024 2,810,005
Based on the computations in Table 27, the present target of CMP would only address 6.9 percent of the projected population of ISFs by 2016. This is higher than current performance, but not that significant and will probably not have impact.
For SHFC to make a significant impact, it should target to cover 30 percent of the 2.8 million projected ISF population in majority of cities in the next five years.

In the next 5 years, the SHFC would be:

• The lead government agency that addresses land tenure security and decent and affordable housing for informal settlers
    in partnership with local stakeholders, namely peoples

organizations (community-based, federations, alliances); civil society organizations; private sector; and government (local and national). Indicators include:
- 30 percent of housing need of majority of local governments addressed (100,000 to 200,000 HH annually). This is not limited to LCMP. Building partnership with LGUs would necessitate expansion of the LGU window for more appropriate strategies.
- Security of tenure is not limited to ownership. Other forms can be explored: rental, usufruct, perpetual lease, and other modes that address the need of communities that are in imminent threat of eviction.
- Communities are disaster resilient. Disasters can be either natural or man-made (e.g. local conflicts).
- Innovative housing finance schemes for the poor. There are on the ground people-initiated financing schemes for their own need. It will be good to look at them and help them scale up their initiatives.

• Financially stable. This can be done through the following:

- Trust liability is converted into equity. We should be able to source other funds. We should not be dependent on government funds alone.
- Source other funds either locally or internationally to leverage loans and/or grants.
- Maintaining at least 80 percent CER through efficient account servicing (e.g., provision of updated and regular report to partners who have expressed willingness to help SHFC).
- Improve ability to enforce mortgage instrument

? Established with its charter to be able to expand.

? Having IT-supported systems and procedures, improved MIS and knowledge management. These are important because data gathered and shared are the basis for policies.

? Living a culture of steward leadership and service with a bias for the poor.

3. Top 3 important goals. For the year SHFC must focus on:

? Provision of tenurial security to 20,000 HH through policy and procedural reforms, strengthening institutional linkages, and “product” development

? Improvement of collections to at least 80 percent CER as indicated by the increase number of current accounts and efficient account servicing

? Increased organizational capacities. Indicators include: appropriate organizational structure with a personnel complement (size and competence) that can respond to the corporate target; MIS installed and utilized for decision making; website improved and updated; and performance-based incentives

4. Expected initiatives. SHFC management and staff were asked to be creative and innovative (i.e., leaving comfort zones; thinking out of the box, pro-active in service), and practice good governance principles: transparent, accountable, participatory, inclusive, cost efficient and effective.

5. Commitment from the President. The President will:

? Build on her experience with the urban poor sector/NGOs and link their advocacies with SHFC;
? Assist SHFC network with other government agencies and the private sector as well as the international partners; and
? Offer friendship and continued partnership even beyond her term.