Permaculture ‘offers sustainable growth’-A A +A
Sunday, October 7, 2012
ADOPTING permaculture presents opportunities for sustainable growth to organizations and businesses, officials of the Rotary Club of Cebu (RCC) said.
RCC president Jonathan Gesalem said in an interview last week the organization is embarking on “substantive” programs that would help organizations and businesses in Cebu grow.
One of the projects they are pushing is the implementation and adoption of the principles of permaculture.
According to Emma Ramas of the Philippine Permaculture Network, permaculture is a
“developed” principle that follows how nature operates. She said the “world-wide phenomenon” aims to re-design our way of life based on nature.
The RCC has received a matching grant of $25,000 from the Rotary International and Rotary Club Kulai, Malaysia for the promotion and implementation of permaculture in Cebu.
Gesalem said the grant covers the various permaculture training and the development of permaculture demonstration sites in Barangay Sirao and another demo site in the city area.
Former RCC president Roy Lotzof said they aim to train 30 to 40 people to implement permaculture in Cebu under a two-week program.
RCC will partner with Philippine Permaculture Network and Bert Peeters, an accredited and certified permaculture designer for the training and implementation programs.
“We need to build expertise to effectively implement the project here,” Lotzof said.
He said permaculture does not require huge investment, only a maximization of resources.
“We wanted to bring the knowledge of permaculture in the business sense where enterprises particularly the micro, small and medium enterprises can use its principles as a robust business model,” said Lotzof, who is also the president of Cebu Leads Foundation Inc.
He said the project can be done on a small scale, implementing it initially in the barangay level or smaller communities until it advances to bigger areas.
Lotzof, who also is a member of Metro Cebu Development Coordinating Board, believes permaculture can be an alternative measure in making Cebu a livable and sustainable mega-city.
“This is similar to smarter cities as it provides Cebuanos a sustainable lifestyle,” he said.
RCC is expecting 150 delegates from nine countries to join the organization’s 80th year anniversary next month.
According to Gesalem, the foreign delegation’s participation will pave the way for sister-club renewals, at the same time promote what Cebu can offer in terms of tourism and trade.
RCC was founded in 1933. The organization is the oldest Rotary Club in Asia. It is part of the Rotary International, a volunteer organization with more than 1.2 million members in 33,000 clubs worldwide.
Among RCC’s project are the anti-dengue campaign, education of street children and health care, which covers medical missions and free heart surgery for babies.
Lotzof said the organization is building stronger relations with other Rotary Clubs overseas for the continued programs and projects in Cebu.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 08, 2012.