From catch to cash: How DOST program increased income of fisherfolks in Misamis Oriental

Published June 1, 2021, 11:53 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) through its Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (CEST) program did wonders on the income-generating capacity and productivity of fisherfolks in Misamis Oriental.

(Photo from DOST Region X/ DOST Facebook Page)

Cesar Excelise, a member of the Dampias Fisherfolks Association (DAFIAS) in Binuangan, Misamis Oriental, shared how DOST Region X’s implementation of CEST empowered them as it increased their income by 100 percent.

“Before, we can only earn a little since we have no nets, and we cannot go fishing without them. Now, we can reach Php 1,500 sales a night with a net income of P1,200 to 1,300. Overall, we earn P12,000 to 15,000 a month. The project is a big help,” he said in his native dialect.

The DOST Region X said before its “intervention”, Excelise’s monthly income from squid catch ranged from only P6,000 to P7,000.

“The money was barely enough for food and other basic needs. Now, with a net, he increased his catch that includes kutob and pidlayan. He can now provide not only for the family’s daily needs but also for clothes, housewares, and two cellular phones for his children’s online classes,” it said in a statement posted on DOST’s Facebook post.

Excelise and other members of DAFIAS were among those who benefited from DOST-X’s science and technology interventions.

These included fishing gears and training for 25 fisherfolks in Dampias, Binuangan, Misamis Oriental.

The DOST-X reported that the project fund amounted to P299,000.

The fishing gears were composed of multifilament nets, lead sinkers, hanging line ropes, sack floaters, and round buoys, it said.

During the series of training, the DOST-X tackled the assembly and mending of nets and conducted re-orientation of the Binuangan Comprehensive Fishery Ordinance in support of Republic Act No. 10654, also known as the Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998.

Excelise said to give back to the government, he is now serving as a volunteer for Bantay Dagat or the Fish Wardens of Binuangan.