DA extends aid to Talaingod indigenous people

THE regional office of the Department of Agriculture (DA) Davao Region provided assistance to Ata Manuvu tribe during the recent Serbisyo Caravan in Talaingod, Davao del Norte.

Over P323,950 worth of industrial fruit seedlings, vegetable seeds and livestock biologics were provided by DA-Davao to hundreds of Indigenous People (IP).

Industrial seedlings distributed include 3,000 coffee seedlings, 4,000 cacao seedlings, 1,000 durian seedlings, 60 packs OPV corn seeds, 20 packs mungo seeds, 700 packs vegetable seeds, 2,500 camote cuttings, 100 cassava bundles and biologics.

The two-day activity, which was initiated by the Association of Regional Executives of National Agencies (Arena) Davao Region, aimed to extend government services to the town's remote communities to help residents improve their livelihood which is basically farming.

About three fourth of Talaingod's population were composed of the Ata Manuvu Tribe. During the caravan's dialogue, tribal leaders ventilate their need for access roads to facilitate transport their products.

Tribal leaders also expressed their volatile peace and order situation have greatly affected their livelihood. They are hopeful that if more investments will be poured in the area their lethargic communities will be dynamic and peace and order will improve.

Datu Luganya-an Sigan-a, tribal leader of the Ata Manuvu, said he is thankful for the support that was given by the government agencies especially to the agriculture sector.

"Ako nalipay ug nagapasalamat na natagaan ko ug seeds kay aron ako makatanom kaysa muadto pa ta sa ubos ug mamalit ug gulayon (I am very happy and thankful that I received the vegetable seeds for I will no longer buy it in town)," Sigan-a added.

Other agencies gave conditional cash transfer, distributed six kilos of rice, canned goods, noodles, mosquito nets, fingerlings, constructed school buildings, roads, deployed nurses, doctors, teachers, etc.

Ma. Febe Orbe, DA-Davao assistant regional director for operations, said the caravan has become a Whole Nation Initiative (WNI) as part of the peace process.

"Eventually, the economic development will spur in the area as the national and local governments are working together for the completion of road access, health and wellness, livelihood, employment and eco-tourism projects," she added.

The Serbisyo Caravan is a quarterly activity of national government agencies since 2011 that gives one-stop government services to rural folks in far-flung areas who are not able to normally receive immediate healthcare, legal, and agricultural services.
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