Film: FDCP Introduces New Assistance Program for Freelance Entertainment Press Workers in Relation to Earlier Announced DEAR Program


MANILA, PHILIPPINES – As a response to the emerging incidents of displaced and out of work audio/visual personnel in the film industry in the country, the Film Development Council of the Philippines announced mid-March the creation of an aid initiative called the FDCP DISASTER / EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE AND RELIEF (DEAR) PROGRAM, which will extend beyond the current global Coronavirus pandemic.

Now, the government agency looks into press personnel, particularly freelancers involved in entertainment beats, for a program they call DEAR PRESS!

Read the statement below:

Republic of the Philippines
Office of the President

Series of 2020

Relative to FDCP Advisory No. 01 on the activation of the FDCP DISASTER/EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE AND RELIEF (DEAR) PROGRAM, a disaster-triggered funding mechanism of the Film Development Council of the Philippines that provides financial assistance to its stakeholders who are directly affected by a major natural disaster, the DEAR PRESS! PROGRAM (for displaced freelance entertainment press) is hereby activated with the following guidelines issued:

Under DEAR, the DEAR PRESS! PROGRAM (for displaced Freelance Entertainment Press) is hereby activated with the following guidelines issued:

Definition of Disaster-affected Freelance Entertainment Press Workers. These are self-employed members of the press who were suddenly out of work as a direct result of the COVID-19 Enhanced Community Quarantine and subsequent State of National Calamity, and does not work for a direct employer and are not eligible for government instituted benefits from other government agencies.

Coverage. The program covers disaster- affected freelancer members of the entertainment press included but not limited to editors, writers and reporters on a no-work no pay status, and those that are not formally affiliated with a company. Program coverage is the National Capital Region.

Conditions. Any one of the following loss of work conditions must be satisfied by applying workers as a direct result of the COVID-19 situation:

    1. The worker was scheduled to work, but were unable to reach the workplace.
    2. The worker was scheduled to start work but the job was cancelled or does not exist anymore.
    3. The worker developed an illness, sustained an injury, or became sick and thus, are unable to work.
    4. The worker’s employer/ producer has temporarily or permanently closed for business.
    5. The worker already started the work but the job was cancelled or postponed to a later date.

Qualifications. Freelance workers of the entertainment press intending to apply for the DEAR PRESS! Program must satisfy all of the following qualifications.

  1. The individual must have job/s that were canceled or suspended as a direct result of the Covid-19 Pandemic. March 15-April 14, 2020 is the duration of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in Luzon.
  2. The individual must not have unemployment insurance benefits from either his/her employer/ producer, or from any other government agencies (e.g. SSS, DOLE, DSWD, etc.).
  3. The individual must have written at least one (1) article about the PH showbiz and AV entertainment industry in the last three months that was published or reported in a news or media publication OR covered at least one FDCP press event last year.

Benefit Payment. Approved beneficiaries of the DEAR PRESS! Program will receive a one-time cash financial assistance of Five Thousand Pesos (P 5, 000) tax free to cover expenses during the disaster period, like personal needs, medical expenses, housing and rent, and other essentials. The beneficiaries will be required to sign a Declaration and Agreement with FDCP agreeing and abiding to all the terms of the Program and certifying that all details of the application and documents submitted are factual and authentic.
Application Process. Relative to the COVID-19 situation, applications may be submitted to FDCP from March 30 – April 30, 2020 or within 30 days of the activation of the DEAR PRESS! Program through this Advisory. Online submissions via email to with the subject [Application] DEAR PRESS! (Surname, Name) are preferable and hard copy applications are discouraged. However, drop boxes for DEAR PRESS! applications will still be available at the FDCP Office at 855 T.M. Kalaw Street, Ermita, Manila starting March 23, 2020.

Documentary Requirements. Freelance workers of the entertainment press who intend to apply are required to substantiate loss of work or self-employment or to substantiate work that was to begin on or after the declared date of the disaster. The following documents shall be submitted by each applicant:

  1. Completely filled up National Registry for Entertainment Press (NREP) Application Form
  2. Completely filled up DEAR PRESS! Application form.
  3. Any proof of income
  4. Latest Income Tax Return (ITR)
  5. Payslips, vouchers
  6. Copy of PRESS ID
  7. Certificate of Engagement/Employment from a news or media publication
  8. Any one of the following:
    • Copy/Link of Latest Showbiz-related Articles written for a publication (January to March 2020)
    • Copy/Link of an FDCP-related article written/reported on (2019)

Downloadable documents:

If documentary proof cannot be provided at the time the claim is filed, applicants have twenty one (21) calendar days from the time of application to submit the complete documents.

Disbursement of Financial Support. The concerned FDCP personnel shall issue the financial support directly to the affected worker’s bank account or via available money remittance services at the soonest possible time upon the approval of the application.
Effectivity. The DEAR PRESS! PROGRAM shall be effective on 30 March 2020 upon its publication. Applications will be open from March 30- April 30, 2020.


Posted by FDCP National Registry on Sunday, March 29, 2020


For more information, you can visit the official DEAR PRESS! Page.

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