KABALIKAT SA KABUHAYAN PROGRAM SM Foundation to help farmers

May 22, 2017 at 7:30 am Leave a comment

By Virgilio Sar. Maganes
ROSALES- The SM Foundation is committed to help farmers in Pangasinan and its neighboring provinces to increase their income through sustainable farming.
This was said by Ramon Gil “Chito” Macapagal, SM head of Corporate Affairs and member of the Board of Trustees of SM Foundation, before the 85 farmer-trainees who graduated under Batch 130 of the Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan Rural Farmers’ Training Program at the Activity Center of SM City Rosales last May 17.
SM Foundation, Macapagal said, continues to provide avenues for farmers to alleviate their lives in coordination with stakeholders such as the HarBest Agribusiness Corporation, Department of Agriculture (DA), local government units, and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
Started in 2007, the Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan Program is envisioned to empower small farmers and marginalized families to sustain their income and to venture into sustainable agriculture.
Batch 130 of the Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan Program started its training last February 15 up to May 10  or a total of 12 weeks with practical farming technologies, capability building on entrepreneurship and lectures at Mangin village, Dagupan City.

The training cum practicum were done every Wednesday when the farmer-trainees were immersed on the principle of sustainable farming with the use of organic fertilizers and pesticides and the planting of high- value crops with the use of hybrid vegetable seeds like ampalaya, squash, watermelons, honeydews, eggplants, okra etc.
HarBest Agribusiness Corporation provided hybrid seeds and the technical skills to the farmer-trainees while the DSWD provided entrepreneurial skills.
The farmer- trainees came from Dagupan City, La Union, Pangasinan (Calasiao) and Ilocos Sur.
The Harvest Festival was undertaken last May 16 at Mangin village, Dagupan City where Buyer’s Forum and Cook Off contest were conducted.
City Mayor Belen Fernandez graced the activity and lauded the SM Foundation and HarBest Agribusiness Corporation for selecting her city as the host of Batch 130 of the Program.
Before the graduation ceremonies last May 17, the farmer-trainees had their tour and buyers’ forum at the Hypermarket  of SM City Rosales and were provided tips on how  to supply SM Markets’ suppliers of organic agricultural products.
The Hypermarket employees demonstrated to them the process of packaging, pricing and product display.
After the tour, the graduation ceremony was held as the culminating activity.
Mauricio Aquino and Antonio Moreno, both graduates of Batch 130, recalled how they were immersed on the value of sustainable farming where they experienced the technical skills to come up with good agricultural products.
Both of them thanked the SM Foundation, HarBest Agribusiness Corporation, DA, DSWD and the City of Dagupan for having undergone the training.
Community Driven Enterprise Assistant  Maynard Cezar of DSWD Region I, said that the farmers must grab the opportunity given by the free training program  of SM Foundation in order to help themselves.
” Kahit graduate na kayo, sana’y ipagpatuloy ninyo ang inyong nasimulan, kung hindi para sa negosyo, kahit para sa sarili at pamilya ninyo,” Cezar said.
The graduation ceremony was also attended by Arsenio “Toto” Barcelona, President of HarBest Agribusiness Corporation, Dagupan City Agricultural Officer Emma Molina, and SM Rosales Assistant Mall Manager Catherine Garcia.

Entry filed under: News.

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