ZERO Extreme Poverty 2030, a civil society-led movement aimed at eradicating extreme poverty, introduced social enterprises by indigenous peoples (IP) on Wednesday, August 8.
The products of the social enterprises from IP communities were showcased at Advocafé, a café and restaurant that allows the general public to help IPs, as 100 percent of its net income goes to capacity building programs for Ips. The launch coincided with the celebration of Advocafe’s 8th anniversary.
The social enterprises comprise the IP Leadership Development Academy (IP-LeD) Batch 4. These are:
Robusta coffee from Gubang Farmers Association – Kalinga;
Robusta coffee from Cagaluan Coffee Farmers Association – Kalinga;
Almaciga Resin from Sangkalan ng mga Tagbanua sa Labtay (Sangkalab), Samahan ng mga Katutubo sa Napsan at Bagumbayan (Samakanaba), and Samahan ng Tagbanua sa Brgy. Simpukan Incorporated (STBSI) – Tagbanua (Palawan)
Traditional mats from Ituman Magahat Bukidnon Weavers Association – Ituman Magahat Bukidnon tribe (Negros Occidental)
Organic swine from Keuyahan Te Matigsalog Association – Matigsalog (Davao)
Breads and pastries from SMMICC – Manobo (Surigao del Sur)
Rattan and pandan handicrafts from KATRIMMA – Mamanwa (Surigao del Sur)
Peanut and coffee from TJG – Kifengfeng and Lahangkeb – Teduray (Maguindanao)
Ginger and ube from Sapa Masalag Indigenous Peoples Organization – Subanen(Zamboanga)
Dried fish from Sinaab Nagkalibunan Savings Group – Subanen (Zamboanga)
Breads and pastries from Pegsalubukan Subanen Dumingag Association-Dapiwak –Subanen (Zamboanga)
“Baka mayroon kaming matutunan din galing sa inyo (We might learn something from you),” Brother Armin A. Luistro, president of the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP), told the IP groups during the launching.
He said the partnership between PBSP and ZEP allows big businesses under the PBSP to learn from the IP communities while teaching the latter about how to achieve self-sufficiency.
Roberto Calingo, executive director of the Peace and Equality Foundation (PEF), said social enterprises could address the inequality in the Philippine economy.
“There is a stigma that the extreme poor are not capable of attaining sustainable livelihood. With the partnership between ZEP2030 and IP LeD, we are not only breaking this stigma,” said Kring Sumalinab, ZEP2030 program coordinator on social entrepreneurship.
“More importantly, we are fostering self-sufficiency and confidence within IP communities through capacity-building initiatives and are paving way for their products to be available in the mainstream market,” she added.
“Since we started, Zero Extreme Poverty 2030 has been determined to bring together organizations that have the presence, passion, and expertise from different sectors to lead the fight against poverty. In organizing these efforts, we hope to help more and provide a deeper and wider impact in uplifting the lives of the poor,” said Benjamin Abadiano, ZEP head secretariat.
“We are working with IP communities as a start, as we recognize that they face a host of challenges. We believe that if we are able to help IP communities get to a level of self-sufficiency, we can create the same impact for the rest of the Philippines,” he added.
ZEP 2030 has developed several capacity building programs for different communities that they work with. Each community has varying needs, requiring tailored interventions. (Juan Miguel D. Bonjoc, University of Sto. Tomas Intern)