Gov’t agencies provide livelihood projects for Rizal women, youth

BINANGONAN, Rizal, Dec. 28 (PIA) — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA), and the Asian Social Institute (ASI), forged an agreement recently to provide livelihood programs for the women and youth in Rizal making use of water hyacinth and bamboo as input resources.

The agreement also stipulates the collaboration of the three organizations in the sharing of resources and facilities for community development and sound environmental management.

Scores of families in Rizal affected by the floods brought by “habagat (monsoon rains)” are still in evacuation centers and have no livelihood thus the need for livelihood programs.

Water hyacinth and the bamboo industries are both adopted by DTI as flagship projects and among the priority industry clusters for development.

While the water hyacinth that proliferates in Laguna Lake has hampered the livelihood of the fishers of Laguna and Rizal, the plants can now be the source of materials for crafts and other products such as green charcoal and fertilizers.

At the same time, the propagation of bamboos along watersheds and shores is consistent with the National Greening Program and will prevent soil erosion and sedimentation of the lake.

DTI Regional Director for Calabarzon Marilou Quinco-Toledo said that DTI’s role in the agreement will be to render capacity building activities and livelihood training skills, and provide marketing channels for the water hyacinth and bamboo products.

LLDA will furnish materials and equipment such as dryers and sewing machines.

Asian Social Institute, as main implementor of the programs, will keep a common service facility for the livelihood projects and will provide organizational guidance to the beneficiaries – about 8,000 youths and women it organized in Angono, Binangonan and Cardona.

Secretary Nereus O. Acosta, presidential adviser on the environment and general manager of the LLDA said that his office will scale up interventions to uplift the plight of fishers and their families along Laguna shore land through community development programs. (CPG/Charlie S. Dajao, DTI Calabarzon/PIA4A)

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