Senator Ninoy Aquino (SNA), Sultan Kudarat – In cooperation with the government’s call to end armed-conflict in the country, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) 12 handed-over the coffee beans production post harvest facilities worth P666,156.00 to Tupi-Bato Farmers Association at Sitio Tupi-Bato, Barangay Midtungok, this municipality, on 02 July 2021.

The said awarding of coffee production equipment was facilitated by DOLE 12 Regional Director Raymundo Agravante and DOLE-Sultan Kudarat Field Office (SKFO)Head Mary Jane Hoksuan. Also present during the release were LTC Romel Valencia of the 7th IB, PA, and SNA Mayor Randy Ecija, Jr.

Tupi-Bato Farmers Association with thirty-six members who were mostly Indigenous Peoples can now improve coffee production and marketing with the use of brand new set of coffee huller machine, coffee pulper machine, 2500 kilogram platform weighing scale, ten (10) all-weather plastic dryer, and 100 liters crude gas.

Prior to the said release, the DOLE-SKFO conducted a capability building to the farmers’ association as preparatory steps in setting up a business formation.

The entrepreneurial project is in partnership with the 7th Infantry (TAPAT) Battalion, 6ID, Philippine Army led by LTC Romel Valencia, the Provincial Government of Sultan Kudarat, PTF-ELCAC, and the Local Government Unit of SNA.

On the same date, the Department also awarded the kabuhayan check amounting to P1,547,070.00 to its Accredited Co-Partner the LGU-SNA for eighty-five (85) informal sector workers which include self-employed, women, youth, PWDs, senior citizens, IPs, rebel returnees, and parents of child laborers.

“Dako ang paghandom namon nga ma-improved ang pangabuhi paagi sa pag produce sang kape halin sa puno pakadto sa lamesa. Kay ang gobyerno wala nagakalipat magbulig sa katawhan bisan pa sa pinakamalayo nga Sitio sang kabukiran,” said Mayor Ecija.

(We are really hopeful that this assistance will improved your lives through coffee production from the coffee plant to tables. The government continues to assist the informal sectors even in the farthest communities in the mountains.)

Further, RD Agravante thanked and appreciated the efforts of the 7th IB in making the convergence program even to the farthest communities in the Province of Sultan Kudarat possible and successful.

“Kasama ng aming mahal na Secretary Silvestre Bello, III ay dala namin ang mga proyektong pangkabuhayan para sa inyo. Ingatan at palakihin pa ang inyong kabuhayan project para makapagbigay pa ang DOLE ng enhancement support para sa ikagaganda ng inyong pamumuhay at komunidad,” added RD Agravante.

The said inter-agency convergence program is spearheaded by the 7th Infantry Battalion, 6ID, Philippine Army under its Project TAPAT or Tapat, Alay ay Pangkabuhayan; Adhikain ay Tahimik na pamayanan which is aligned with the Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP), a peace-building concept from End Local Communist Armed-Conflict (ELCAC) or EO No. 70 of the Duterte Administration. End/CDGamboa