SORSOGON, November 3, 2021 – Members of the Ogod Indigenous People Agta Agricultural Production Association earned from selling egg produce by the mallard ducks livelihood production provided by the Department of Agriculture – Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-SAAD) Program in Barangay Ogod, Donsol, Sorsogon.
Before the implementation of the Program, around 680 indigenous people living in Brgy. Ogod have their own way in providing their basic necessities until the proposed mallard ducks egg production for livelihood assistance was implemented.
In June 2021, the program offered the association a poultry package consisting of 400 mallard ducks and supplementary poultry supplies consisting of 50 bags of layer feeds, 40 laminated sacks, and 8 rolls of net amounting to Php 370,000.
The association divided the interventions received from the program to 39 members consisting of 13 clusters (at least 3 members per cluster). Each cluster received 30 mallard ducks for their egg production.
On that month, SAAD National Director Myer G. Mula together with SAAD Bicol Action Officer and Chief of Field Operations Division Dr. Mary Grace DP. Rodriguez visited the association and spearheaded the turnover of the project.
Sustaining the family’s needs: a testimony
A 54-year-old member of the association, Felix Mendiola, sold 465 mallard duck eggs which cost Php 6 each from July to September 2021. In three months, he earned Php 3,330 from the project.
Tatay Felix is also a rice farmer and a kagawad in Barangay Ogod, where he gets his primary source of income. The profit earned from the SAAD project helped him in supporting his family’s needs.
“Magayon ang proyekto kan SAAD Program dahil bukod sa pagiging kagawad, igwa pa akong pinagkakakikitaan sa pag benta ki mga bunay kan itik na mas makakatabang sa pang konsumo kan sakuyang pamilya uru-aldaw (SAAD Program’s project is good because aside from being a barangay kagawad, I have another source of income through selling mallard duck eggs which helps me better in my family’s daily consumption),” he shared.
Meanwhile, 48-year-old barangay tanod Salvador Niones earned Php 3,000 from 600 mallard duck eggs which he sold at Php 5 each from July to September.
Tatay Salvador is thankful to the SAAD Program as he cried saying, “Mahirap lang po kasi kami… Kaya malaking tulong sa amin ang SAAD na binigyan kami ng mga itik. Gusto ko po ito mapalago para may pagkonsumo kami araw-araw (We are poor. The SAAD Program relieves this by giving us mallard ducks. I want to make this grow so that we can use it for our daily consumption).”
Another beneficiary, Amier Avisado, a barangay tanod and a single parent of four, harvested more than 500 mallard duck eggs. She sold 300 eggs at Php 5 each and accumulated an income of Php 1,500 from July to September. The other eggs harvested were allocated for table consumption.
According to her, she struggled when her house was demolished in 2019 for the construction of a pabahay (free shelter) project initiated by the municipality. While the free shelter project is aimed at assisting locals such as Amier, the construction will take time before it becomes available for occupancy.
At the brink of homelessness, she rendered laundry service and sold vegetable produce to get by and sourced out additional income to rent for a small house with her children from her Php 900 monthly earnings as a barangay tanod since July 2021.
Amier believes that the SAAD Program would change her life and assist her family’s needs through the mallard ducks she received.
“Nagtutubod ako na ang SAAD ang ma-dugtong sa kapobrehan paduman sa pangkabuhayan. Maabot ang panahon na ini ay magdakol kaya dakulang pasasalamat po talaga sa SAAD Program (I believe that SAAD will help the poor to make a livelihood. The time will come that these [ducks] will grow and multiply, so I thank the SAAD Program very much).”
Table 1. Income from SAAD Mallard Duck Production Project (July – September 2021)
Three of the IP farmers earn an additional income from the duck eggs sold within the community of Ogod in Donsol. As a beginning enterprise, the farmers are in the process of tapping other agencies and the LGU for marketing assistance.
Agta Chieftain Rogelio Salinas extended his gratitude for the help of the SAAD Program to the association.
“Pasasalamat ko sa SAAD dahil sa naitaong pangkabuhayan sa mga IP na medyo kapos sa hanap-buhay lalo na ngunyang pandemya (I am thanking the SAAD Program for the livelihood they gave to the IPs who do not have enough sources of income especially in this time of pandemic),” chieftain Salinas expressed.
In addition, the SAAD Program is set to conduct a training on duck production to the association scheduled tentatively in October or November this year.
To sustain the project, the association plans to venture on salted egg production and leche flan enterprise. ###
Writer: Pauline Trixia D. Borja, SAAD Program Sorsogon Information Officer
Mark Joven Barja – Area Coordinator of Donsol, Sorsogon
Provincial Coordinator Mary Rose Detera
Pauline Trixia D. Borja
SAAD Program Sorsogon Information Officer