Fully aligned with the national agenda of development enunciated in President Aquino’s Social Contract with the Filipino People, DOST is taking up the challenge for community empowerment.

In response to the government's National Program on Poverty Alleviation, the Department of Science and Technology developed the program entitled "Community Empowerment thru Science and Technology” dubbed as the CEST Program. It aims to empower the poor and the marginalized sector and to improve the quality of living thru science and technology. Packaged S&T interventions are focused to five (5) entry points: Health and Nutrition, Water and Sanitation, Basic Education and Literacy, Economic Enterprise and Development and Disaster Risk Reduction/ Climate Change Mitigation.

The Department of Science and Technology - Region 1 (DOST-I) through the Provincial S&T Centers piloted the program in CY 2013 at Bagulin, La Union in their three (3) barangays, namely, Brgys. Libbo, Tagudtud and Dagup. For the year 2015, the program was introduced to Aguilar, Pangasinan focusing to five (5) barangays as follows: Brgys. Bocboc East, Bocboc West, San Jose, Panacol, and Laoag (Sitio Mapita).