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CHARMP2 turns over 4.6M worth of rural infras in Balbalan, Kalinga

Balbalan turnover april 28_2016

Another day of celebration calls for the farmer beneficiaries of Balbalan, Kalinga as the Second Cordillera Highland Agricultural Resource Management (CHARM2) Project turned over to them five rural infrastructures with total project costing of 4, 684,694.90 on April 28, 2016. These rural infrastructures answer the municipality’s need for storage areas, drying areas and improved irrigation systems in improving their agricultural conditions.
With cost-sharing scheme of 70% (CHARM2 Project) – 30% (LGU), the completed and turned over subprojects are: Ababaan Multipurpose Warehouse (Ababa-an), Rehabilitation of Pokok Communal Irrigation System (Ababa-an) Rehabilitation of Keseng-Pilalaw CIS (Poswoy), Tawang Multipurpose Warehouse (Tawang), and Concreting of Tawang Multipurpose Drying Pavement (Tawang). “It is a celebration of stories of success and achievements indicating good partnership of stakeholders and beneficiaries. We are thankful to the CHARM2 Project and other special projects and funding agencies who helped in the realization of our dreams given the limited development fund of the province,” said Kalinga Provincial Planning and Development Coordinator Ms. Flordeliza Moldero.
Generally, the people of Balbalan depend on farming as their main livelihood producing agricultural products like traditional rice, coffee, legumes and other high value crops. But with limited agricultural infrastructures like irrigation, drying and storing areas, some farmers felt difficulties in managing their agricultural produce. For rice farmers, many do one cropping per year due to the scarcity of water. Although some practices two cropping per year, they admitted that water is still insufficient especially during summer. “Idi, karkaro nu summer, ket nalaka nga matstanan ti danum idjay irigasyon mi ta haan nga nasemento (Before, especially during summer, the water easily runs dry because the irrigation [canal] is not cemented),” recalled Mr. Herman Gangot, PO chairman of the Poswoy Irrigators’ Association. Mr. Gangot, along with the Project beneficiaries of Keseng-Pilalaw CIS and Pokok CIS (Ababa-an), now enjoys the benefits of the rehabilitated irrigation systems. “Dakkel nga tulong jay CIS ta talaga nga dumanunen jay danum jay service areas (The CIS is a big help because water can already reach our services areas),” exclaimed Mr. Gangot.
Moreover, the 420 square meters Multipurpose Drying Pavement in Tawang is already utilized to dry agricultural produce like rice, corn and coffee beans. When fully spread, the drying pavement can accommodate around 50 sacks of parchment coffee. “Ti ikasta mi idi awan pay jay project, agbilag kami idjay arubayan mi…aplagan mi lang ti net. Nu saan, irabaw mi lang idjay ayan ti saan nga nabayo nga irik (Before the project implementation, we dry our produce in our yards using net or above unpounded rice,” said Ms. Jocelyn Espineli, member of the Tawang Farmers Association. The pavement is also used as venue for meetings or community gatherings.
CHARM2 Project Manager Dr. Cameron Odsey, on the other hand, reiterated that with the turnover of projects, ownership for sustainability is also turned over to them. He emphasized that the projects are their ‘tawid’ or legacies envisioned to help them improve their agricultural conditions in the community. The Poswoy Irrigators’ Association have already programmed cleaning/weeding of their CIS twice per cropping and collect Php50.00 annual due among its members as part of their sustainability plans. The annual due will serve as the association’s revolving fund.//Janice B. Agrifino
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