Tanggol Kalikasan-Western Philippines University-Institute of Environmental Governance (TK-WPU-IEG) concluded its three-day mentoring and monitoring visit in Culion municipality on Thursday, July 28.
TK, a non-profit and non-governmental organization with environmental advocacy in the Philippines, provided financial and technical support to two environmental projects in the municipality of Culion, such as “Mangrove Planting and Management” in Barangay Baldat; and “Re-establishment of Marine Protected Area” in Brgy. Binudac.
The president of the Baldat Fishermen and Farmers Association (BaFFA) and barangay Kgd. Leona Spad, said that the project helps them and the environment because they were able to establish a mangrove nursery and are now the source of propagules for various mangrove planting activities in the town.
“Malaking tulong po ito sa amin dahil sa amin po binibili ang mga pantanim na bakhaw at kami rin po ay kabilang sa nangangalaga ng mga mangrove forest sa aming barangay,” she said.
Municipal administrator Maxim Raymundo said that BAFFA serves as a model women’s organization for other barangays of the municipality because they act as mentors to those who want to establish an association that will also advocate for the protection of their mangroves.
“We are partnering with NGOs such as Tanggol Kalikasan for us to provide livelihood opportunities to the communities while they take care of their mangrove ecosystem,” he said.
The mentoring and monitoring visit in Binudac culminated with a “Seminar on Ridge-to-Reef Management of MPAs towards Sustainable Fisheries” facilitated by Environmental Planner (EnP) Reagan Venturillo, a faculty member of WPU, while a lecture-dialogue with some members of BAFFA and Culion Eco-warriors conducted by EnP Lyca Sandrea Castro, also a faculty member of WPU and the TK project coordinator for Culion, capped the visit in Baldat.
Meanwhile, Municipal Agriculture Officer Arnel Alcantara noted that the people of Culion are lucky to be chosen as beneficiaries of various NGO projects. Alcantara also stated that they should learn to appreciate these projects and take care of the environment because Culion has rich and interesting potential in fisheries.
TK-WPU-IEG has recently completed its projects in the towns of Cagayancillo and Dr. Jose P. Rizal, and is now working on the continuation of the projects for the three municipalities.