Nearly a hundred farmers and former members of the New People’s Army (NPA) from various villages in Mawab town, Compostela Valley province received support from the government through livelihood and livestock assistance, the army’s 71st Infantry Battalion said on Satuday.
The distribution of livelihood support was spearheaded by the Department of Agriculture in Davao region (DA-11) with the support of the army, the provincial government of Compostela Valley and the local government unit of Mawab.
Among the farmer’s group and former rebels who benefited from the livelihood support include the members of Sitio Estabillo Andili Rural Association of Farmers (SEARAF) and Kaibigan Workers for Peace and Development Organization (KWPDO).
The facilitation of the release of the livelihood assistance was made possible upon the request of the 71st IB to help the former rebels and farmers in the area.
Beneficiaries belonging to SEARAF received on Saturday two heads of gilts, five heads of piglets and five heads of Boer goats; while the KWPDO members were awarded with 50 heads of native chickens with an overall total amount of P60, 000.00 as starter kits on Native Chicken Production and Swine and Goat Raising Livelihood Program.
The livelihood and livestock assistance will provide the beneficiaries with short-term and long-term livelihood programs and a way of alleviating their income and making them productive members of their respective communities.
DA-11 was represented by Marie Ann M. Constantino, livestock coordinator, who asked the farmers and the beneficiaries to take good care of the animals with the hope that the program will help them improve their living conditions and earn more incomes to sustain their needs.
Constantino added that the agriculture department in Davao region will continue to extend assistance to farmers in rural communities in collaboration with the various stakeholders.
The local government of Mawab, through its municipal agriculture office also facilitated a seminar on livestock raising to the beneficiaries.
Lt. Col. Davice Christopher G. Mercado, commander of 71st IB expressed gratitude to the support of the DA, the provincial government and the LGU in their undertaking, particularly in providing support to the former rebels who opted to change their lives and go back to the mainstream society.
“This livelihood project is geared in helping the populace to be productive citizens that will contribute to the economic growth and development of their communities,” Mercado said.
He added that the turn-over ceremony was a demonstration of a true spirit of “Bayanihan” as various agencies of the government collaborate and complement to each other in helping the farmers and former rebels in the area.
“The military will continue to be a steadfast force as it takes a more expanded part in nation building,” Mercado said.