Empowering Iriga’s IPS through Buri-based Skills Training

(Photo courtesy of Lungsod ng Iriga)

The City Government of Iriga, thru its Local Economic Development and Investment Promotion Office (LEDIPO) under the leadership of Ms. Amor A. Soneja-Auro, partnered with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), represented by Engr. Senen Emmanuel S. Malaya, to organize a skills training on buri-based products. The activity aimed to empower Indigenous Peoples (IPs) across various barangays in Iriga City by tapping into the rich cultural and economic potential of buri, locally known as karagumoy. Also, it aimed to provide new avenues for skill development to the Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) while advocating for sustainable sourcing of raw materials from the abundant buri in the mountains.

Ms. Irien DC. Boletic graciously accepted the role of Resource Speaker for the training, held on April 17, 2024, at the CDRRMO Multi-Purpose Covered Court. With experience and expertise, she imparted invaluable insights to the thirty (30) participants, all IPs of Iriga City, guiding them in crafting two main products: bags and wallets.

During the program, Vice Mayor Edsel S. Dimaiwat emphasized the importance of acquiring skills that enable self-sufficiency, echoing one of the core visions of the Arriba Administration. The push to innovate products exclusively made in Iriga City aligns with this vision. The event received esteemed guests, including Sangguniang Panglungsod members Hon. Melnan R. Murallo-Asanza, Hon. Dandreb N. Abonite, Hon. Jessie DV. Abonite Jr., and Hon. Carmelita Cambria, IP Mandatory Representative.

Following the training, participants received toolkits from the City Government to help them in applying their newly acquired skills and to contribute to the development of local artisans while preserving the cultural heritage associated with buri in Iriga City. The program concluded as a resounding success, with expectations of a positive impact on the local economy by generating more job opportunities and fostering the promotion of the city’s cultural heritage.

(Source: Lungsod ng Iriga)

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