TABUK CITY, Kalinga -- A peace project of an international non-government organization (NGO) here won a prestigious international award in 2009 held at the Brewery, London, United Kingdom late last year.

According to Alejandro Orpilla of the International Association for Transformation (IAT) based here, the "Gift for Peace Project" implemented by IAT is one among three awardees under the search category on International Relief and Development Project of the Year.

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Alongside with the "Maguindanao Tuberculosis Control" of the Catholic Relief Services and Argentina's "Recycling Homes" of the Habitat for Humanity - the Association of Project Management that conducted the search selected IAT's "Gift for Peace Project" when it gave a "lasting gift of love to an enemy tribe."

Marina Tiwang, also of IAT, said the gift of lasting love takes the form of a large cattle offspring of carabao or cow plus small livestock such as duck or chicken being passed-on to a family of another tribe.

Orpilla and Tiwang said: "The gift giving done in significant events called pass-on ceremony always involves two hostile tribes. "This is IAT Philippine's conscious effort to seek for lasting peace among Kalinga tribes."

Heifer International Philippines (HIP) provided the cattle and livestock that were initially distributed to six sub-tribes of Kalinga including those partner communities of IAT. In this case, it was the Tulgoas and Basaos who were at odds for long that exchanged gifts to end their tribal animosities.

IAT Executive Director Sison Paut addressed a crowd of about 3,000 from various tribes who gathered for the NGO's thanksgiving festivity held recently at Nambaran, Tabuk.

He told the audience that "peace is the Almighty personified, therefore, this event is a fitting manifestation of gratitude to the Almighty" because of this award. (PIA)