Wednesday Sep, 30 2020 01:33:47 PM

Local farmer groups to supply vegetables for inmates of SK jails

AGRICULTURE • 14:00 PM Wed Aug 26, 2020
Kathleen Pagayon/DAR Sultan Kudarat
Agrarian reform and jail officials in Sultan Kudarat sign marketing agreement where ARBs will supply SK jails with vegetables and food. (DA-SK photos)

ISULAN, Sultan Kudarat - The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Sultan Kudarat, in partnership with the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) signed a marketing agreement today, August 25, with selected Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries' Organizations from 2 municipalities of the province, under the Enhanced Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty (EPAHP) Program of the government aimed to mitigate hunger, provide food security and reduce poverty in the country.

The signing ceremony was attended by representatives from Kangkong Farmers' Association (FA) of Esperanza town and Sitio Lagon Farmers' Multi Purpose Cooperative (SILAFAMCO) of Pres. Quirino, PARPO Rodolfo T. Alburo, MARPOs Rodger Baraquia and Abdul Saligan of DAR, Inspectors Brian Sison and Marivic Verona of BJMP Isulan and Insp. Danilo Castillon of BJMP Tacurong.

The agreement enabled the farmer groups to supply fresh, readily available and healthy vegetables to the jail to provide for the daily nutritional needs of all its inmates.

Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer II  Rodolfo T. Alburo said that the event is a defining moment in the implementation of the program as it is the first marketing agreement signed in the SOCCSKSarGen Region under EPAHP.

"DAR Secretary John R. Castriciones, thru Undersecretary for Support Services Emily O. Padilla, gave us the directive to ensure that a partnership be forged between DAR and other partner agencies, to merge necessary services in order to address issues on hunger and poverty," added Alburo.

BJMP Isulan male dorm chief inspector Brian M. Sison lauded the partnership and thanked the DAR for reaching out in order to help the farmers and the inmates, true to the bureau's motto, "Changing lives, building a safer nation".

Likewise, Isulan female dorm inspector Marivic Verona expressed her gratitude for the agreement as it will ensure that the inmates be provided with ample supply of nutritious vegetables during this time of pandemic.

President of Kangkong FA Mateo Grasparil and Chairman Virginia Gonio of SILAFAMCO both conveyed their gratefulness to the DAR and the BJMP for choosing them as suppliers, providing them with an avenue to market their products especially now that the demand for vegetables has dwindled due to the effects of the community quarantine measures brought on by the Covid19 viral pandemic. 

"We assure that our cooperative will provide quality products to the jail and maintain a great and long-lasting partnership with DAR and BJMP," said Chairman Gonio.

Launched in 2019, the EPAHP Program is an enhanced version of the Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty (PAHP) forged among the Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), and Department Of Social Welfare And Development (DSWD) in 2016. Since then, many more agencies have joined forces to support this cause.

The recently signed marketing agreement has a duration of 1 year, from August 25, 2020 to August 25, 2021,  until renewed by the parties involved. It  will be revisited by the end of September to review any changes that can further develop the program.

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