BUKIDNON, June 13, 2022 – The Department of Agriculture – Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-SAAD) Program granted Php 299,650 worth of planting materials and machinery to around 100 former rebels (FR) assisted inside the camp of the Philippine Army in Kalilangan, Bukidnon through the Mindanao Army Training Group (MATG).
According to DA Regional Director Carlene Collado, on May 27, 2022, the provision of farm inputs and machinery was delivered to the camp as part of the agricultural department’s support to Executive Order No. 70, adhering to the ELCAC initiatives of the government.
Among the interventions provided by SAAD were 100 durian seedlings, 50 rambutan seedlings, 20 packs of vegetable seeds, 60 bags of organic fertilizers, two knapsack sprayers, two wheelbarrows, four shovels, and a mechanical corn sheller.
The MATG will distribute the seedlings to selected line battalions, who will facilitate the turnover to the former rebels to encourage them to propagate crops and fruits in their areas.
MATG Commander Colonel Ciriaco A. Lomas-e Jr. extended his gratitude to DA 10 for the livelihood intervention. The corn, fruit, vegetable, and livestock inputs shall help the beneficiaries in their transition to mainstream society, and will be distributed to other SAAD-covered and identified ELCAC areas.
MATG Livelihood Enhancement Program
The MATG is the sole military training camp of the Philippine Army in Mindanao, located at Camp Kibaritan Military Reservation, Malinao in Kalilangan, Bukidnon.
The vast area of the MATG, the second largest military reservation after Fort Magsaysay in Nueva Ecija, covers the municipalities of Talakag, Pangantucan, Kalilangan, Bukidnon and Wao, Lanao del Sur. The army line battalions in these areas will greatly benefit from the MATG as one of DA’s multiplier farms for their community livelihood program.
“Sa Philippine Army, meron tayong tinatawag na Military Livelihood Enhancement Program. Ang layunin non is para matuto – mabigyan ng kaukulang kakayahan at kaalaman ang mga tao sa subordinate units’ ng army sa mga iba’t ibang livelihood endeavors,” Col. Lomas-e Jr. said.
(In the Philippine Army, we have what we call the Military Livelihood Enhancement Program. It aims not only to learn but also to equip the people in the subordinate units of the army with the relevant skills and knowledge in various livelihood endeavors).
Under the Military Livelihood Enhancement Program, various crops are cultivated, including corn, vegetables, and fruit trees. Livestock and poultry animals such as goats, native pigs, cattle, and free-range chickens are also raised which were provided by the DA regular programs that are then used for the community service projects of the army. ###
Writer: Jo Ann Sablad, DA SAAD 10 Information Officer