By Minerva BC Newman
CEBU CITY – Two fisherfolks association in Cebu – the Bisayas Alliance of Fishing Operators for Reform (BAFOR) and the Toledo City Fisherfolk Workers Association (TCFWA) – shared over 1,400 kilograms of their fish catch to 1,376 poor families, charitable institutions, communities and frontliners in Cebu.
According to Alma Saavedra, regional information officer of the Bureau Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in Central Visayas, the two fisherfolks’ organizations, in coordination with the BFAR-7 and the Cebu Provincial Fishery Office (PFO), initiated the distribution of their fish harvest and food packs to mark the observance of Farmers and Fisherfolks Month.
“As donations continue to come in, the distribution has moved from one sitio to another, serving marginal households from Barangay San Roque which is infected with the corona virus (COVID-19) disease. The relief assistance has also benefitted indigenous communities, charitable institutions, schools, jail facilities, and other sectors, which sought help from the office,” Saavedra bared.
BAFOR shared more than 200 kilograms of fish to 334 marginalized families and victims of a recent fire in the various sitios of Barangay San Roque, and with Cebu archdiocese charitable institutions like the Gasa sa Gugma and the St. John Paul II Home for Aged Priests on April 27, May 9 and May 13.
TCFWA, on the other hand, donated about 835 kilos of fresh fishes to more than 442 marginalized households from Sitio Palma, Barangay San Roque; the Sisters of Mary Boystown in Minglanilla town; and the Seminario Mayor de San Carlos in Cebu City; Badjao communities from Sitio Alaska Mambaling and to the Cebu City Jail in Barangay Kalunasan on May 4, 12 and 19.
The BFAR7 personnel also traversed the highways in Cebu and dropped by at different checkpoints to share some 25 kilograms of fishes to policemen and volunteers/front liners deployed in the cities of Cebu, Talisay, Naga and San Fernando town, Saavedra added.
Saavedra also said that, on May 26, the TCFWA gave at least 279 kilograms of fresh fish – 60 kilos for The Sisters of Mary Girls’ town in Talisay City; 50 kilograms were given to the Sisters of Mary Boys’ town in Minglanilla; 80 kilograms of fishes were set aside for the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) in Cebu City, and 70 kilograms for the affected barangay in Sitio Alaska, Mambaling and some were shared with the assigned officers at checkpoints that the BFAR vehicle passed by on its way to Cebu City from Toledo.
BFAR-7, through the Regional Fisheries Training and Fisherfolk Coordination Division, gave out at least 70 food packs to the fisherfolk community of the Ati Tribe in Barangay South Poblacion, Naga City on May 14, Saavedra added.
According to Saavedra that BFAR-7 was open to receiving donations from other fisherfolk organizations or associations that are willing to share portions of their harvests/fish catch which can be part of its series of donations and relief distributions to communities, families, front liners and other charitable institutions in the region.