Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries in Sultan Kudarat Receive Millions Worth of Agri-Inputs from DAR – IARCDSP
Pandemic or not, farmers in Mindanao tirelessly till the soil. This is why the Department of Agrarian Reform, together with SEDPI, continue to work while majority of the population are on a standstill to bring the most awaited agri-input investments from the DAR – Italian Assistance to ARC Development Support Program (IARCDSP) to our farmers.
Five (5) Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries and Farmers Organizations in Sultan Kudarat received the first tranche of the promised agricultural inputs that shall kickstart their agricultural businesses supporting farmers in their Agrarian Reform Communities (ARC).
Josephine Balicaw, officer of Marguez United Irrigators Farmers Association (MUIFAI) in Pag-asa ARC, couldn’t help but shed tears when around PhP1.5M sacks worth of inputs were unloaded from a 10-wheeler truck and brought to what was once an empty warehouse. They have been preparing for this through the capacity interventions of SEDPI and now the moment has come for them to put theory into action.
In the same way, Noria Gapor, officer of Sigay Ka Tamontaka 4 Association (SKTFA) from Kutawato ARC, was reeling with disbelief when she was told that all the sacks were to be offloaded and not brought elsewhere. “Akala ko ilang sako lang para sa amin. Lahat pala!” (I thought we’re only getting a few sacks of inputs but we’re getting them all!), said Gapor.
It is quite an emotional experience as well for our farmers in Naldan Creek Irrigators Association (NCIA) in Lambayong ARC, Kalayaan Communal Irrigators Association (KCIA) in Lutayan ARC, and Taguisa Agrarian Reform Beneficiary Multi-Purpose Cooperative (TARBMPC) in Lebak ARC. For these ARBOs, now that the inputs are here, they will be able to provide farmer-friendly agri-input financing, farm machineries rental, and hauling services to fellow farmers in their community.
This is one of the foreign- assisted projects being implemented by the Department of Agrarian Reform and funded under the loan agreement executed with the Government of Italy. This project involves not only millions worth of agricultural inputs, farm machineries and equipment, hauling trucks, but also intensive capacity building training on microfinance management tools and monitoring & evaluation systems spearheaded by SEDPI.
There is a total of 35 Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries/Farmers Organizations involved in the DAR – IARCDSP Project covering Sarangani, Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, and Lanao del Sur Provinces.