The Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) Regional Field Office 6 turned over on July 20 the small scale projects to the upland residents of Alimodian, Iloilo.
One hundred twenty-three households from the barangays of Dao, Umingan, Manasa, Lico and Cabacanan Rizal benefitted in the phase one implementation of the Panay Island Upland- Sustainable Rural Development Project (PIU-SRDP).
PIU-SRDP aims to improve living and community environment, and to increase household incomes, sustainability, strengthen value chain marketing, and promote ecological awareness of the upland farmers through sustainable rural development.
The initial phase, which was launched last December 23, had focused on the improvement of household conditions including the construction of toilets, concreting of floors, and repair of kitchen and walls, and development of barangay facilities like the construction of barangay and multi-purpose halls, and road riprapping with drainage.
According to DA 6 Regional Technical Director for Operations Manuel O. Olanday, this Korean government-assisted project emphasizes values reorientation and community empowerment adhering to Saemaul Undong’s values of diligence, self-help and cooperation.
Olanday thanked the KOICA group and the residents who worked together for a year to materialize the phase one implementation. He encouraged everyone to be ready for the next phase which will highlight community participation through the provision of income generating projects.
Jina Park, KOICA field manager assigned in barangays of Manasa and Umingan, shared that the second phase, which aims for income generation in selected barangays, will commence on September. She personally thanked the upland villagers for their hardwork and cooperation to complete the projects by themselves through the practice of Bayanihan system.
On the otherhand, municipal mayor Geefre A. Alonsabe said that the Korean government’s intervention will help in making Alimodian as an agri-tourism site soon. Alonsabe also expressed gratitude to KOICA, DA, and the Provincial Government of Iloilo for the successful implementation of small-scale projects in the ‘Seven Cities’.
Three phases of the project—the improvement of living environment, income generation, and promotion of self-confidence among the target beneficiaries are set to be completed by 2020. Other PIU-SRDP pilot sites are in Tapaz and Jamindan in Capiz; Patnongon in Antique; and Libacao, Aklan.#(SMHToreno)