SARANGANI, July 4, 2023 – Twenty (20) beneficiaries of indigenous T’boli corn farmers in the upland region of Sarangani are now set to commence in corn farming after receiving livelihood assistance under the Integrated Corn Production and Vegetable Production Project Project from the Department of Agriculture – Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-SAAD) Program Phase 2.
Situated in an upland area, farmers associations in the municipality of Kiamba is primarily rainfed with scarce sources of irrigation to support farming activities. According to the SAAD provincial staff, during the wet season which lasts from June to November, farmers have a favorable window for planting the corn seeds from SAAD.
In lieu of the livelihood assistance rollout in SOCCSKSARGEN, the farmers underwent Beneficiary Needs Assessment (BNA) facilitated by the SAAD field implementers. The BNA revealed that the Kapate Tribal Farmers Association with 20 members are engaged in corn production as the main source of livelihood, with each member tilling an average of 1 hectare (ha) of corn field.
Said project amounting to Php 287,720.00 was granted to twenty (20) farmers, comprising forty (40) bags of hybrid corn seeds, forty (40) bags of urea, and forty (40) bags of complete fertilizer. These inputs are expected to cover 20ha and will be cultivated in individual farms. Alongside, the group also received specialized training on Integrated Corn and Vegetable Production in June 6 to 9, 2023.
With this, Mr. Romeo Simpal, FA President expressed his gratitude to the program. “Tey bong pasalamat me, deng benlay le mi corn seed tapos abono nga lemwot be SAAD. Tinguha me nga dili masayang ang tobong ye kum lemwot be SAAD nga yo tey bong ke paslamat. me nga yo deng belay ye kum paningkamot me nga mag uswag, nga mag lambo ang amoang association tungod sa inyo nga tabang. Mao nang nagpasalamat kami dako ug basig naa pay matabang mo sa amoa,” Mr. Simpal said.
(We appreciate the SAAD staff who provided us with fertilizer and corn seeds. We shall try our best to make use of them and not waste the assistance we received. Our association has gotten better thanks to SAAD’s assistance, thus we are grateful for the helping hand.)
With great enthusiasm, the group has started cultivating their corn seeds, expecting to harvest their crops in the 4th quarter of 2023. Further, the association will also receive forty (40) packs of pinakbet seeds in the third quarter of 2023. ###
Writer: Vincent Rae T. Porras, DA-SAAD Region 12 Information Officer