DAR, DOLE aid Agusan del Norte co-operative with livelihood grant


MEMBERS of the Farmers for Peace and Progress and Agriculture Cooperative (FPPAC) based in Agusan del Norte was recently awarded a livelihood grant worth P996,888 by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

DAR Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer Andre B. Atega said the livelihood grant is expected to be used as working capital to support the cooperative’s cocoa production.

Atega was quoted in a statement as saying that the FPPAC is venturing into cocoa production.

“With the money, they will buy materials and equipment for processing food products such as cocoa powder, cacao nibs and tableya [cocoa tablet],” Abega added.

“We are glad that through the DOLE’s integrated livelihood program (DILP), we opened a new opportunity to advance the business enterprise of FPPAC, which we know will uplift the lives of its agrarian reform beneficiary members,” he added.

Renato Manabat, chairman of FPPAC received the livelihood grant and expressed gratitude to the DAR-Agusan del Norte for the release of the livelihood assistance to their cooperative.

DOLE Provincial Office Head Keith C. Duran said that the DILP livelihood assistance is an inter-agency convergence initiative with the barangay local government unit, in delivering support services to various parts of agrarian reform communities in the province.

Duran said that with the joint effort of the DOLE and the DAR of Agusan del Norte, the FPPAC will finally purchase the needed equipment and materials to help transform their economic activity that will serve as a stable source of income.

Ellen J. Torralba, chief agrarian reform program officer (Carpo) of the Program Beneficiaries Development Division (PBDD) of DAR-Agusan del Norte, said that the delivery of livelihood assistance by the DOLE seeks to contribute to poverty reduction through the promotion of community enterprise of the cooperatives.

She said that the project is expected to bring desirable changes in the lives of the farmers and will open new opportunities to forward the cooperative’s livelihood income.

“The DAR also strengthened the group by way of providing a link with an appropriate market for their agri-products,” Torralba said.

Data provided by DOLE Point Person Ma. Elena Negrido indicated that a total of 11 cooperatives have already benefited from the program from 2019 up to this year.

Negrido further said that thousands of farmers have already benefited from the P9.3-million worth of livelihood funds released by the DILP in Agusan del Norte since 2019.

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