Top photo: DOLE Secretary Bienvenido E. Laguesma awards trophies to PESO Tagum City and PESO Province of Pampanga for winning the PESO Excellence Award
Bottom photo: Secretary Laguesma (6th from left) poses for a photo opportunity with the nominees and winners of the Bayanihan Service Awards Hall of Fame Category. Also in photo beside the DOLE Secretary are Pampanga Governor Crisostomo Garbo ( 5th from left) and Vice Governor Lilia “Nanay” Pineda (7th from left)

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) honors Public Employment Service Offices (PESOs) for their exemplary work in addressing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the 22nd National PESO Congress held on 25 October 2022 at the SMX Convention Center, Clark Freeport, Angeles City, Pampanga.

A total of 72 entries for the Secretary’s Bayanihan Service Awards (SBSA) were submitted by different PESOs across the country. These entries are divided into 10 categories and underwent the careful assessment of DOLE evaluation committee based on the following criteria: Innovation which refers to projects or programs or upgrading of the same, implemented by the PESO intended to cater for retrenched or displaced workers due to the COVID-19 pandemic from January to December 2021; Resilience or the PESO’s effort in maintaining its core services that is the Referral and Placement and Vacancy Solicitation; and Humanitarian Service which highlights the PESO’s efforts in going beyond their mandate of employment facilitation during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

After evaluation, only 59 entries qualified with 19 PESOs declared as winners. Each winner received Php 100,000 while other qualified PESOs received a consolation prize of Php 20,000. The winners for the Secretary’s Bayanihan Service Award are as follows:



PESO Excellence Award

Tagum City, Davao del Norte, Region XI;;

Province of Pampanga, Region III

Hall of Fame

Tagum City, Davao del Norte, Region XI;

Province of Pampanga, Region III;

Angono, Rizal, Region IV-A

Highly Urbanized City

Davao City, Region XI;

Iloilo City, Region VI

1st Class Province

Davao del Sur, Region XI

2nd Class Province

Lanao del Norte, Region X;

Surigao del Norte, CARAGA

3rd-5th Class Province

Aurora, Region III;

Marinduque, MIMAROPA

Component and Independent Component City

Ilagan City, Isabela, Region II;

Binan City, Laguna, Region IV-A

1st–2nd Class Municipality

Baliuag, Bulacan, Region III

3rd–4th Class Municipality

Balungao, Pangasinan, Region I;

Llanera, Nueva Ecija, Region III;

Jimenez, Misamis Occidental, Region X;

Magsaysay, Davao del Sur, Region XI

5th–6th Class Municipality

Catarman, Camiguin, Region X

Job Placement Office

University of Batangas, Region IV-A

From the above winners, JPO University of Batangas was elevated as a Hall of Fame Awardee having won the Search for Best PESO in 2018 and 2019 and for consecutively winning the Bayanihan Service Awards in 2020 and 2021 which was given an equivalency as its 3rd SBP award. Moreover, PESO Davao City, Davao del Sur (Region XI), PESO Lanao del Norte (Region X), PESO Aurora (Region III), PESO Ilagan City, Isabela (Region II), PESO Llanera, Nueva Ecija (Region III), PESO Jimenez, Misamis Occidental (Region X), and PESO Magsaysay, Davao del Sur (Region XI) also received the corresponding equivalency of its 1st SBP Award having won two straight wins in the Bayanihan Service Award for the past two years.

Another feature of the SBSA is the Choice of the Press Award wherein PESOs submitted audio-video presentations showcasing their innovation, resilience, and humanitarian services through a 3-minute video presentation. The entries for this award were scrutinized by a panel of judges composed of media practitioners from The Manila Times, Business Mirror, Philippine News Agency with the DOLE-Information and Publication Service as committee chair. Upon screening, judges assessed the video entries based on the following criteria: completeness, content quality, impact, and length. The Municipal PESO of Sanchez Mira in the province of Cagayan ( Region II) was able to stand out in the press award bagging the first (1st) place with a prize of Php 35,000 while the Provincial PESO of Marinduque ( MIMAROPA) and PESO Tacurong City in Sultan Kudarat (Region X11) were the second (2nd) and third (3rd) place winners, respectively whose LGUs shall receive a prize of Php 25,000 and Php 15,000, respectively.

The Secretary’s Bayanihan Service Award recognizes the exceptional and extraordinary contributions of Public Employment Service Offices to the acquisition of quality and decent employment of their respective constituents through innovation, invention, resilience, and distinct accomplishment in public service despite the limitation and restrictions brought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As we wade through the new normal and with strong signs of economic recovery as clearly shown by the resumption of business to its pre-pandemic level and return to work employees both local and overseas in mid-2022, the annual search for the Best PESO shall resume in 2023.