THE Department of Agriculture (DA) has announced plans to partner with malls and local communities including homeowners’ associations in order to expand the reach of Kadiwa stores.
This way, residents can avail themselves of agricultural/farm products at much lower prices than those in traditional market stalls.
This scheme is of the same faith and credit as those former consumer-oriented programs of previous administrations such as the Masaganang Ani in the late 70s but this time the Kadiwa stores project aims for more in-depth participation of the marginalized sector such as the lowly daily wage earners.
I broached the idea to some of the Board members of FCTMCHAI and I have yet to receive a response. Still, I am encouraged to write about the Kadiwa stores because their aim is good and implementable. Even local government units are urged to do their share in the successful implementation of the same. Ditto with barangay offices which are more familiar with residents needing this kind of program.
I even prepared a letter to President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr., he being the concurrent Secretary of the Department of Agriculture asking him about the requirements the Association needs to comply with to qualify. Still awaiting reply to that letter.
There are other projects by the Department of Agriculture which need farming out to residents and these are not exclusive to farmers or fishermen. Even housewives can participate. All what is needed is for the agency to disseminate all its programs in the pipeline and the rest is easy.
Livelihood opportunities are not limited to DA alone.
The Departments of Labor and Employment and Public Works and Highways and even of Health, have projects that can be farmed out to citizens. The DOLE has the Tupad program or the Tulong sa Disadvantaged/Unemplyed and the DPWH has farm-to-market road projects that can tap able-bodied male workers and the Department of Health can engage the services of young individuals to make surveys regarding medical services the department extends. If there is a will, there is a way to implement beneficial projects.