Friday, September 30, 2016

QUENDANCOR Offers Amnesty Program for their Borrowers

Bahandi sa Kaumahan on Hope Radio studio with Quedancor as guests
To help borrowers settle their long overdue accounts, the Quedan and Rural Credit Guarantee Corporation (QUEDANCOR) is now offering a program dubbed as Quedancor Amnesty Program (QAP).

This was announced by Engr. Christopher Gilos, OIC Regional Assistant Vice President for Caraga and Property Appraiser for Mindanao Area in a radio interview as guest on Bahandi sa Kaumahan radio program over Hope Radio Butuan yesterday, August 8, 2016.

Gilos said that under QAP, the remaining principal amount will be settled; the penalty will be waived 100%; interest will be slashed down up to 75% if paid in full or up to 50% if amortized within three years.

Dave Iligan of Quedancor Regional Communications and Records Management Office said that borrowers and co-makers can avail of the amnesty program.

They are advised to visit the nearest Quendancor provincial offices for complete details on QAP.
Quendancor, is an attached agency of the Department of Agriculture credit resources into the countryside so as to trigger the vigorous growth and development of rural productivity, employment and enterprises.

Bahandi sa Kaumahan is a flagship radio program of the Department of Agriculture Caraga to update its listeners on projects and programs as well as advocacies for agricultural development. (Aurelius P. Arais/DA Caraga)


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Women Empowerment through DA-SELAP

Traditional wives who are just relying on the income of their husband nowadays a thing of the past.

This is how members of the Tagbuyacan Rural Improvement Club (RIC) describe their current plight after accessing a project through the Support to Emergency and Livelihood Assistance Project (SELAP) Phase II of the Department of Agriculture Caraga.

Tagbuyacan is one of the barangay in Santiago, Agusan del Norte.

Josephine Monter, president of the Tagbuyacan RIC with 30 members said that in 2013 they had availed P300,000.00 funding support from SELAP for their Integrated Food Processing Project. 

With the SELAP funding support and an additional P34,000.00 from the local government unit, they were able to purchase a freezer, sealer, grinder, weighing scale and chopper for their business venture.

They were also able to purchase an initial 20 heads of piglet and were dispersed to their members for fattening project. 

Members who would want to engage in the fattening project would have to pay P2,400 per piglet after four months, so the club has an income of P400.00 since a piglet would cost P2,000.00.

The club now had wide array of value adding products such as banana and camote chips and longganisa. They also operate a sari-sari store and catering services.

Raw materials to be processed were sourced out from their farmer members, thereby ensuring market for the farmers.

To ensure regular operation of their store, they hired a store attendant with a monthly salary of P2,500.00.

She said that every month they were able to process about 100 kilos of banana (cardava) and 20 kilos of camote for their banana and camote chips products respectively and 60 kilos of pork for their longganisa and for catering services.

As Tagbuyacan RIC manages their ventures well, other government agency extended their support to the group particularly the Department of Trade and Industry.

The club had availed Support Service Facility Project adding their array of products with ube and squash flour but still utilizing SELAP funds as capital for raw materials.

Betchaida Rojo, business manager of the club said that their products are sold in the locality and currently being promoted to other areas through trade fairs.

She said that for the past two years, they had been able to give out cash dividend for the members out from the income of their business ventures. However, those members who frequently volunteered to run their business were compensated much higher.

“What makes us empowered is that we are no longer those classical wives who are just relying on the income from our husbands. Nowadays we have our own source of income to help husbands in meeting the needs of our respective families,’ Monter said.

She said that through DA-SELAP Phase II their horizon broadens as they have now opportunities to face other business owners and an opportunity to travel other places especially during trade fairs.

“We are so thankful to DA-SELAP Phase II, without their support we would remain typical wives and typical farmers”, Monter added.


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

DA Project Transforms Coffee Farmers to Manufacturers

Buenas Coffee products
Coffee remains the staple drink of Filipinos and its demand continues to expand.

According to Philippine Coffee Board, Filipinos can consume 100,000 metric tons of coffee a year. Hence, various companies established their coffee products in the Philippines to grab the huge market opportunities.

But did you know that coffee farmers themselves in Simbalan, a mountainous barangay in Buenavista, Agusan del Norte planted and manufactured their own line of coffee products bringing the brand name as Buenas Coffee. The group is called Simbalan Rubber Farmers Association Incorporated (SBFAI) with 37 strong members.

According to Lucia Morden business manager of the association, Buenas Coffee would not have been born without the support from the Department of Agriculture Caraga through the Support to Emergency and Livelihood Assistance Program (SELAP) Phase II.

“We are so grateful to DA because Buenas Coffee would have not been conceived if not with the funding support of SELAP,” Morden said.

In 2012, the Simbalan Rubber Farmers Association Incorporated availed the P300,000.00 livelihood assistance from SELAP Phase II with P34,000.00 counterpart from Buenavista LGU which was used to purchased coffee de huller and coffee roaster.

Morden said that Buenas Coffee with its humble beginning is now slowly gaining popularity among coffee lovers in the locality.

“To ensure freshness of our coffee, we process on an order basis, most of our bulk of orders are coming from government offices and satisfied individuals,” Morden said. With the increasing popularity and demand, some of its products were also featured in various trade fairs in Caraga.

Buenas Coffee is in soluble form in various packaging; with its aesthetic and aroma no doubt it can compete with commercial brands.

SBFAI can process an average of 20 kilos of coffee in a month. The raw coffee to be processed where purchased from its member beneficiaries.  Barangay Simbalan has 77.75 hectares planted with coffee comprising 98 farmers based on data from the Municipal Agriculture Office of Buenavista.
Morden said that aside from funding support from SELAP, they also availed coffee planting materials from the High Value Crops Development Program (HVCDP) of DA Caraga.

With good track record in implementing SELAP project, other national line agencies lined up to support the association thus expanding the business line of SBFAI such as grocery store, agri- supplies, agro-forestry planting materials and more.

As their brand name Buenas which means lucky, Morden said that indeed DA-SELAP Phase II brings luck to their association.  (Aurelius P. Arais/DA Caraga)