TMC supports local farmers during pandemic
While COVID-19 remains a threat to different parts of the country, a local community in barangay Sapa, Claver, Surigao del Norte has turned to farming to brace for another threat – food availability and livelihood amid the pandemic.
A total of 25 members of Sapa Integrated Farmers’ Association (SIFAS) spent months of the community quarantine attending to their farming project supported by Taganito Mining Corporation (TMC), a subsidiary of Nickel Asia Corporation.
The project is part of TMC’s Social Development and Management Program where it has so far spent over Php 1.07M for the livestock, seedlings, labor, construction, etc.
For the first phase of the project, 220 Peking ducks were delivered by the TMC Community Relations team along with feeds and construction materials.
On May 29, an additional 13 goats, 1 male and 12 females were turned over to the farmers’ group who hopes to market the goat’s milk and the cheese that can be made from it. They are also looking at converting the goat’s manure and urine into fertilizer and pesticide; while the mature goats can be sold for their meat.
As counterpart, the members provided the labor during land preparation and take turns in manning and managing the farm which sits on a 1.5-hectare area offered by two of the members, Elpedio Acero and Manuel Escudo.
“It is part of our social commitment to support sustainable livelihoods in our communities. In these challenging times, it is a privilege to continue helping and supporting our communities through our relief operations and livelihood programs,” said Roel Paniza, TMC Community Relations manager.
SIFAS president, Virgelio Buyan, shared that the group is blessed that even with the on-going community quarantine, they are able to earn daily from the harvest of fresh duck eggs. Per day, they collect an average of five (5) trays of duck eggs which they sell in the community. They also receive a stipend for their labor for the land preparation for their fruit and flower plantation.
“Akong pangandoy na mulambo ini na project isip pasalamat sab namo sa naghatag sa project. Amo ni ampingan kay kami ra man sab mabulahan, syempre garbo man sab namo ni mga taga Sapa (It is my dream that this project will prosper as our gratitude also to the company. We will treasure and take care of this since we will also be the one to benefit and it is our pride as member of the Sapa community), shared Buyan.
Nagpasalamat ko na isa mi sa natagaan ini na project na makatabang gajud sa katawhan. Maskin COVID, padayon trabaho, para makita sa TMC na kami naningkamot gajud. (I am thankful that we are one of the recipients of this project that could really help people. Even during the pandemic, work continues also to show TMC that we are striving), said Buyan.