By Tara Yap
ILOILO CITY— A P30.5-million project of the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) has revived bayanihan spirit in upland barangays (villages) of Alimodian town, Iloilo province.
Alimodian Mayor Geefre Alonsabe said the three-phase Panay Island Upland-Sustainable Rural Development Project (PIU-SRDP) was able to bring back community volunteerism in five far-flung barangays.
“This Korean project instilled to our famers good values and the importance of community labor,” Alonsabe told Manila Bulletin.
Farmers in Barangays Cabacanan Rizal, Dao, Lico, Manasa, and Umingan basically had to do their share in building infrastructures such as farm-to-market-roads, community toilets, and water reservoirs.
Nenita Cagud, a 53-year-old farmer from Barangay Umingan, told Manila Bulletin that it was only though PIU-SRDP that she and her neighbors were able to avail concrete-made comfort rooms.
A communal greenhouse was also constructed to boost cauliflower production in Barangay Dao.
Alimodian is only one of the projects sites of PIU-SRDP in Panay Island.
Manuel Olanday, DA-6 regional technical director, explained that PIU-SRDP is a holistic approach in improving the livelihood of farmer communities. It aims to improve food security, productivity, income generation, and make upland communities more resilient in the face of climate change concerns.
“We also train leaders in the communities to be able to sustain the project,” Olanday added.