Some 150 Moringa seedlings or malunggay were distributed by Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (PPSRNP) to barangay New Panggangan as its support to the recovery plan of the community.
PPSRNP information officer Jan Elmer Badilla said Friday that the recovery plan covers the food security of the community due to the effect of pandemic and the conservation of wildlife particularly Katala birds whose main source of food is Moringa.
“Support sa recovery plan natin for the community, earlier this month or last month, namigay na tayo ng initial na vegetable seedlings sa kanila from Yamang Bukid so support pa lang ito uli. Pero yong seedlings natin ay galing sa nursery ng park,” he said.
“Objective natin dito dalawa, ayon nga, in support doon sa recovery plan, yong food security ng community at saka for conservation kasi alam natin na ang malunggay ay ‘yon ang kinakain ng mga ibon o katala particularly, pasok pa rin siya sa recovery plan ng PPUR,” he said.
Badilla added that the recovery plan of the park management is part of the C.A.R.E programs or “capacity building; alternative livelihood for the community; revival and reconfiguration of tourism products; and environmental protection and conservation”.
The recovery plan also targets to cover barangays of Cabayugan, Tagabinet, and Marufinas. The seedlings are intended for each household of every barangays.
PPSRNP eyes that Community Based Sustainable Tourism (CBST) sites could use bird photography as an alternative tourism product since the activity in the past five years have given the city around two million tourism receipts.
“Especially dito sa New Panggangan na nasa pagitan sila ng dalawang protected area, ito ngang Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park at saka ‘yong Cleopatra’s Needle Critical Habitat — so tawiran talaga ng mga wildlife natin,” he said.
“Alam natin na during this pandemic kung baga majority of them walang trabaho, nakaasa sa ayuda ng gobyerno so yong ganitong mga klaseng gulay kasi alam natin na ang pinapamigay ng gobyerno ay sardinas at noodles, ‘pag hinaluan nila ng mga gulay na pinapamigay natin, mas healthy for them,” Badilla added.
Jonalyn Figues, community organizer in barangay New Panggangan, said that the seedlings given to their community are beneficial as they could open the minds of the residents on the importance of planting Moringa and its benefit in both health and environment.
“Malaki talaga ang tulong niyan kasi unang-una, may mga tao talaga na parang halos ayaw magtanim ng malunggay pero kapag nalaman naman nila kung ano ang mga benepisyo na maibibigay ng malunggay ay tatanggapin nila,” she said.
Figues said that they also want to explore supplying Moringa to Sabang for additional income.
New Panggangan barangay captain Gleceria Obenza, said that the agriculture committee will also survey the seedlings once planted to observe its growth and for maintenance.
“Susurveyin din ng committee namin ng agriculture para yung naibigay nila at least makita natin na talagang itinanim at maganda rin yung pag-aalaga na kailangan ma-provide na tumubo,” she said.
Barangay New Panggangan is the first recipient of seedlings out of four covered barangays. The next distribution will be conducted as days follow.
“Tulong yan sa aming komunidad kasi yan ay gamot din, malakas din ang ano dyan sa malunggay na yan, maraming vitamins nakukuha kaya kailangan marami po talaga nyan sa komunidad,” she said.