Tagum City –The essence of public-private partnership is demonstrated anew through organic farming for poor families here.

On Friday, officials of Barangay Madaum; SM Foundation, Inc. (SMFI); SM Davao; Harbest Agri-business Corporation; Davao Del Norte Provincial Government; Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD); Department of Agriculture (DA); and program participants of Pantawid Pamilya began the planting season for SMFI’s Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan Farmers’ Training Program at a demonstration farm in Barangay Madaum. 

Leading the event were SMFI Assistant Vice President for Livelihood Outreach Program Cristie S. Angeles and DSWD Director Priscilla N. Razon.

According to Director Razon, under this latest public-private partnership on high-value crop production, some 150 families who are Pantawid and non-Pantawid recipients will gain extra opportunities to improve their life. 

“They have been taught basic skills in organic farming which they can readily apply and earn from it on top of providing fresh produce for their family.”

She said previous recipients were 154 Typhoon Pablo victims of Monkayo who maintain their organic farm in Barangay Olaycon while some have also ventured in cultivating their own backyard garden.

Participants grow vegetables and fruits like cucumber, tomato, squash, ampalaya, bell pepper, honeydew and gourd.

HarBest Agribusiness Corp. conducted the lectures and hands on sessions on Nursery Preparation, Seed Sowing, Land Preparation, Caring & Nursing of Seedling, Pruning, Trellis Preparation, Fruit Selection and Fruit Thinning, Pest and Disease Control, Irrigation & Drainage, and Postharvest Technology.

Integrated in the training course was an orientation on the DSWD Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) focused on Community Driven Enterprise Development approach which covers Self Awareness, Time Management, Financial Literacy, Product Management, Participatory Livelihood Issue Analysis, and Value Chain Analysis.

DSWD and DA also taught participants Cost Analysis and Return of Investment Analysis.

Director Razon added that to date, 36 Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Davao Region have committed to work with DSWD to further assist recipients of Pantawid Pamilya. “We continue to collaborate with CSOs and non-government organizations like SM Foundation to provide additional opportunities to our Pantawid families and enable them to move up and lead a better life.” (DSWD)