Hold on!

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Created on Monday, 04 March 2019 Published Date

The positive outlook of farmers as manifested in the past two project monitoring activities held in September 2018 and January 2019 is a boon to program implementation because it boosts the morale of field staff/personnel as well as the beneficiaries themselves.

Majority of the recipients were profuse in thanking SAAD Program management during these periodic visits for what some of them consider as “stroke of luck” or “good fortune” to have been bestowed with this unexpected assistance. The poorest of the poor, especially those who received the grant for the first time, were appreciative because, according to them, the government has finally reached out to them, which they have not experienced with any other program before. Hence, it is just right that this goodwill is reciprocated by sustaining the projects and even sharing to others the material benefits they are now enjoying, they added.

As strategized during the series of multi-year planning workshops conducted in 2018, these identified grantees will be assisted consistently by the program, until management deems that they can be considered financially independent already. For now, however, the inputs must still be continued to level up from where they started to entrepreneurial level. The coaching, mentoring, and handholding activities should be maintained as well to guide and instruct the farmers, yet always conscious of their traditional mores, attitudes, and indigenous practices.

As it is, the individual farmers and their associations are happy and content with the given inputs. Even those who had not been as successful initially in their respective endeavors due to animal mortality or crop loss are still hopeful that they can recover in the next production cycle or succeeding planting season.

It has become evident at this time that best practices worth emulating have evolved, enhancing project implementation. These practices, such as the offer of incentives, which were initiated by the LGUs, and the farmers themselves, without prodding from the program, encourage the recipients to outdo each other’s performance, in the process benefiting them and their families. Others were put in place to improve systems and procedures.

As SAAD Program advances into the midterm, the management would like to convey one very important message to all stakeholders – HOLD ON! Continue with the initiatives in the pursuit of its goals for obviously it is on the right track. Barring any unforeseen circumstances that would render the program inutile, there is bright promise that our food producers are on the road to becoming economically self-sufficient by end of project period, and even beyond. The silver lining seems to finally loom at the horizon.  (MICHAEL F. DABUET, SAAD Staff, FRANCISCO C. ROSAROSO, Chief, RAFIS)

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