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CHARMP2 partial phase out held in Kabayan

kabayan exit_con


Around 200 participants composed of Project beneficiaries, CHARMP2 representatives and local government officials were gathered at the municipal grounds of Kabayan, Benguet on March 1, 2016 to participate in the Partial Phase out of the Second Cordillera Highland Agricultural Resource Management Project (CHARMP2) in the municipality.  The activity cum Sustaining Development: Handing over CHARMP2 legacies aims to consolidate all the activities/projects that were accomplished for the past seven years to plan and commit towards its sustainability.


“Aside from the physical subprojects, your learnings and experiences are “tawid” or legacies that the Project has offered and is helpful in your implementation of similar projects in the future,” Project Manager Cameron Odsey highlighted. He also explained that since most of the projects in Kabayan were already completed, it now needs to be formally turned over to the beneficiaries for their sustainability.


Lessons learned

Farmer beneficiaries representing the four Project-covered barangays (Batan, Ballay, Bashoy and Pacso) shared their experiences and lessons learned throughout their involvement in the CHARMP2 implementation. Aside from the physical projects, they have gained knowledge and skills from trainings, workshops, educational sessions like Farmers Business School, Farmers Field School and School-on-Air (SoA).


“Before we undergone the Farmers Business School, we just boil the sweet potato or eat it raw but now we can already process it into processed products like polvoron, pastillas and tinudok through the CHARMP2 intervention,” remarked Ms. Laurence Alingay, treasurer of the Association of Ballay Community Developers. The organization has identified sweet potato as their priority commodity.


Batan brgy. kagawad and SoA enrollee Mr. Ferdinand Tolino also recalled what he learned during the 4 months SoA course on natural resource management. “The forest is important because without this, there will be insufficient or even no water to supply our agricultural farms and households,” he stressed. Mr. Tolino added that only during the Reforestation project that they have planted many trees like pine tree and caliandra. He then encourages his community to plant trees even without other people telling them to do so. “If you cut, you plant,” he said.


Looking forward to sustainability

A covenant for sustainability  stating  “...commit ourselves to sustain the programs and good practices that were implemented under the CHARM2 Project to the greater benefit of the indigenous people in the Cordillera" was unveiled to attest the local government unit and beneficiaries’ commitment through signing in the said covenant.


"When CHARMP2 came, the community was involved in their planning and decision-making especially in the identification of priorities. The community has understood the objective of the Project and now there are already visible outcomes. Because we worked hard and we own it (the subprojects), it is only right to love and take care of it,” expressed Mr. Pelino Bugnay, Ballay brgy. kagawad before signing the covenant.


Bashoy Farmers Consumers Cooperative further committed through collective responsibility to promote a harmonious working relationship for the restoration and maintenance of the communal forest and watershed area through their agroforestry and reforestation projects. “We firmly believe that that by accepting, doing, and abiding, the mutual agreements and understandings will economically, socially, and ecologically benefit us and the future generations,” said BOD chairperson Ms. Susan Guinoran.


Moreover, the Provincial LGU through the Benguet Environment and Natural Resources Office has already allotted Php500, 000.00 to sustain the reforestation and agroforestry projects through the Benguet Provincial Federation of Indigenous Forest Guardians, a federation of Reforestation and Agroforestry Peoples’ Organization in Benguet. Before the end of March 2016, the Federation is also hoping to start the site preparation of a centralized nursery adjacent to the provincial nursery.


The Municipal LGU also committed to offer their services to make sure that the projects are being taken care of through monitoring, technical assistance, repair and/or rehabilitation of the projects. “Whoever the next Mayor is, I will make sure to turn over our commitments to ensure sustainability,” committed Kabayan Mayor Faustino Aquisan.


On the other hand, a set of operation and maintenance tools (1 wheelbarrow, 1 shovel and 2 "bareta") were distributed to the four CHARM barangays. The remaining four sets of tools were turned over to the municipal LGU to cater to the non-CHARM barangays.


With the commitment setting and planning towards the sustainability of the projects in Kabayan, the CHARM2 Project hopes that these legacies will truly live on in sustaining development.//Janice B. Agrifino



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