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  • 1. Republic of the Philippines Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL TRAINING INSTITUTE1
  • 2. ATI Annual Report 2010Message from the DirectorOn Being Steadfast and Moving ForwardThe Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) empowers the farmers, fisher folk and otherstakeholders in pursuit for agricultural and countryside development. As the apex agencyfor extension of the Department of Agriculture (DA), the Institute continues to perform itsbasic functions thus serve thousands of clienteles nationwide. It does not settle for anythingless but all the best for the service of the farmers and fisher folk who are deemed reliant onthe new and innovative agricultural knowledge that it offers through trainings, Farmers’Field Schools, techno-demonstrations, farm and business advisory, distribution of IECmaterials and other extension-related activities.The year 2010 was another auspicious year for the Agricultural Training Institute. It was ayear of major accomplishments which were focused on the attainment of the objectives ofthe DA, Medium Term Development Plan and Millennium Development Goals.And it was also the year that the Agricultural Training Institute’s electronic extensionprogram made its debut in the United States and recognized as the lead agency inagriculture and fisheries extension by Secretary Proceso J. Alcala.The year 2009 paved the way for more opportunities to improve the extension service ofthe Institute. For instance, the launching of Farmers’ Contact Center (FCC) in November2009 that catered and answered more queries from our clienteles. The crafting of theExtension Master Plan orchestrated last year led to numerous accomplishments and thisenabled the Institute to exercise leadership in providing extension services in support to thethrusts and priorities of the Department. All these accomplishments surpassed expectationsand produced outputs this year that could be deemed helpful to future clientele.During the first quarter of 2010 according to the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS), thePhilippines has experienced ups and downs in the agricultural production centersspecifically in crops which dropped by 6.15 percent on that period. Amidst these challenges,the Institute was not deterred in implementing training and extension programs because itsdedicated staff, believe that quality of outputs knows no limits and boundaries.The Institute sustained its steadfast commitment in attaining more outputs as shown andreflected in this report. Accordingly, the Institute continued and maintained through theconduct of various extension activities.Under Enhancing the Capacities of Agriculture and Fishery Clients, the Institute conducted atotal of 7,077 training and extension support services anchored on the Agri-Pinoyframework with a total of 72,668 beneficiaries served. For training and other related servicealone, a total of 1,553 training courses were implemented nationwide with CARAGAregistering the highest number of participants trained. It addressed issues on climate2
  • 3. change, La Nina/El Nino, global competitive and many others. For CY 2010, 1,419 technologydemonstration and extension projects were established and maintained in collaborationwith the farmers, LGUs, DepEd, PhilRice, Bureau of Soils and Water Management, SUC,NGOs and DA-RFUs. A total of 4,055 farm business advisory services such as call queries andconsultancies were provided and 7,155 walk-in clients were served this year. Some 4,946farmers benefited from the Institute’s School/University-On-Air program. Some 342 sonsand daughters farmers were given scholarships under the Youth for Agriculture andFisheries Scholarship Program. Seventy-two (72) middle level managers were capacitated onmanaging extension programs and 154 DA staff, LGU and SUC personnel were granted MSand doctorate degree scholarship under the Human Resource Development Program.It shifted its gear in program planning to support the Agrikulturang Pinoy or Agri-Pinoyframework which was anchored on the following guiding principles: food security and self-sufficiency, sustainable agriculture and fisheries, natural resource management and localdevelopment. It also responded to address the impact of climate change through its variousprograms implemented nationwide. Programs for El Nino/La Nina, environmentconservation and disaster risk reduction were implemented to address these areasthroughout the year. The Institute proactively charted its direction towards “PagbabagoTungo sa Matuwid Na Daan” in building a more responsive and dynamic extension systemcomes CY 2011 and Beyond.In addition, more scholarships were offered in order to enhance the capacities of agricultureand fisheries stakeholders. The Institute did not merely continue to strive for the best fordelivering extension services but also venture into other potential opportunities for theInstitute which benefited more client beneficiaries. Specifically, it implemented thefollowing programs and projects: Locally-funded- 4-H Youth Development Program, Foreign-Assisted (Expanded Human Resource Development Program (EHRDP), Banner Programs inSupport to the Commodities such as Rice, Corn, High Value Commercial Crops, Corn, andLivestock, Malitubog-Maridagao Irrigation Project Phase II, and Regular Program with a totalbudget of P378, 622.00 excluding the EHRDP with no budget allocation for 2010.ATI is involved in several Foreign-Assisted Projects. This year the Institute continued toimplement activities for the MALMAR II Project funded by JICA; Capacity Building for SmallScale Farmers on Market Access and Entrepreneurship Project with DA-AMAS and funded byFAO; Philippine Adaption Climate Change Program of the Department of Agriculture withBSWM and funded by the World Bank; and the Irrigated Rice Production EnhancementProgram funded by IFAD-EU.Moving forward while coping with changing agriculture and extension landscape, theProgram on Increasing Clients’ Access to AF Data, Information and Knowledge brought somuch pride to the Institute. The e-Extension Program made its debut in the internationalscene when it presented to the US Department Agriculture and the United NationsCommittee on Sustainable Agriculture the agriculture extension initiatives of the country aslead agency in extension of the Philippines Department of Agriculture. Under the program,1,520 enrolees availed of the free on-line courses on assorted mature technologies of which1,009 had graduated and earned certificates of training. Farming now is done electronically.Through the Farmers’ Contact Center, agriculture and fisheries advisory services wereprovided. A total of 12,373 queries were answered on various technologies on agricultureand fisheries, marketing-related concerns and those related to e-learning service through3
  • 4. SMS, calls, email, shout box, IM and internet forum. To support information dissemination,the Institute produced and distributed a total of 53,919 information materials in print andvideo to its clients. Special Projects such as Institutionalization of the Techno GabayProgram, Aurora e-Village Project and the Integrated Voice Response n Management in RiceProject were implemented.Strengthening rural based organizations, indigenous people, cooperatives and accreditationof extension services providers were the activities implemented under the program onImproving Extension Programs and Partnerships. The institute provided avenues forexchange of experiences, knowledge and information on current technologies andagribusiness opportunities. It continued to support the 4-H Club all over the country andallocated a total of P1, 250,000.00 per region to carry out 335 livelihood programs of the 4-H Club. The Institute accredited this year two (2) national and four (4) regional extensionservices providers.All these and with the leadership and cooperation of the staff, the Institute reached greaterheights in terms of quality and effective training and extension delivery system.4
  • 5. ATI ProgramsThe year 2010 opened much awaited opportunities for the implementation of all programs underthe ATI. Major accomplishments focused on the advocacy to fight hunger and poverty- thefundamental problems wherein solution is expected to usher the development of the agriculturesector and eventually the countryside. Plans and targets set for the year were put into actionresulting in the achievement of expected outputs and have contributed, in one way or another, tothe attainment of the objectives of the DA, Medium Term Development Plan and MillenniumDevelopment Goals.Taking a glimpse of what was achieved during this year, the following are the Institute’saccomplishments anchored on its four major programs, namely: a) Enhancing the Capacities ofAgriculture and Fishery (AF) Clients; b) Increasing Clients’ Access to Data, Knowledge andInformation; c) Improving Extension Programs and Partnerships; and d) Improving the Quality of AFExtension Governance. Specifically, it implemented the following programs and projects: Locally-funded- 4-H Youth Development Program, Foreign-Assisted (Expanded Human ResourceDevelopment Program (EHRDP),Banner Programs in Support to the Commodities such as Rice, Corn,High Value Commercial Crops, Corn, and Livestock, Malitubog-Maridagao Irrigation Project Phase II,and Regular Program with a total budget of P378,622.00 excluding the EHRDP with no budgetallocation for 2010.Enhancing Capacities of AF ClientsThe Institute had implemented the various capacity building programs to upgrade the knowledgeand skills of its clients. These trainings and extension activities were in support to the improvementof the rice, corn, livestock and high value commercial crops sectors focused not only on productionbut also includes the marketing and processing components. It also addressed the issue of climatechange, El Nino/La Nina interventions, global competitiveness, sustainable development and manyothers. It also conducted capacity building to improve and strengthen its partners in developmentsuch as the youth, women, entrepreneurs, rural based organizations, non-governmentorganizations, SUCs, private sectors and many others. The Institute also empowered itself toimprove management and governance of extension. Below were the type of activities conductedto respond to the needs of the clients.Type of Activity TotalTraining 793Techno demos 1419Farm and Business Advisory 4055FFS Season Long 180Briefing 187Congress/Convention 4Consultative Activity 50Educational/Farm Tour 56Field day 43Forum/Symposium 95Review and Planning Workshop 26Others (Meeting, Seminar, etc.) 119Total 7,077Fig. 1. Distribution of activities according to type.5
  • 6. Training and Extension Support ServicesIn the continuing implementation of the Food Security Plan of the DA, the Institute implementedprograms and activities anchored on the Agri-Pinoy Framework. This was launched at the Institutewhich was graced by no less than the Secretary of Agriculture, Sec. Proceso J. Alcala. To jumpstartits implementation, the Institute conducted the national Training of Trainers (TOT), regional andprovincial TOTs with collaborative funding from the DA-RFUs. About 415 and 769 participantsattended the regional and provincial TOTs, respectively. In summary, the Institute through itsnetwork of training centers nationwide conducted a total of 793 trainings and training-relatedactivities, serving various 72,668 clients.Sec. Proceso J. Alcala discusses the Agri Pinoy framework to the participants during the Training of Trainorsheld at the Agricultural Training InstiuteSec. Alcala poses with the participants and DA officials. Dir. Saliot discusses with Asec. Bernadette R. Puyat the Farmer’s Call Center services during her visit.6
  • 7. The data below show the graphic presentation of ATI accomplishments for the year 2010 interms of the type of beneficiaries.Table 1. Breakdown of ATI Client-Beneficiaries* (*Except FBAs and Techno demos) Type of beneficiaries TotalExtension Worker 15,002LGU Representatives 1,827GA Representatives 781SUC Representatives 579ATI Staff 1,914Farmer 35,210Fisherfolk 37Rural Women 3,048Youth 8,611Rural Bases Organizations 839NGO Representatives 312 Fig. 2 Distribution of participantsPO Representatives 162 according to the major type ofEntrepreneurs 180 participants.Students 1,459Others 2,707 With these activities are the different Total 72,668 types of client beneficiaries served suchas farmers, extension workers, youth, entrepreneurs, students, and other target beneficiaries. Asreported, farmers topped the list of participants (74%) followed by extension workers comprising 22percent of the total clients.Fig. 3. Distribution of Participants by Region7
  • 8. A total of 1,553 trainings and other related activities such as farmers’ field schools, field days,scientific visits, consultations, briefings, workshops and others were implemented which benefitedaround 72,668 participants nationwide. CARAGA had the most number of beneficiaries served.With the mainstreaming of gender and development in the Institute’s programs to promote womenempowerment, a slight difference in the attendance was observed between male and femalecategories where women clients comprised 48% as against 52% of the male clients. Fig. 4. Participants by sexTraining services included national and regional training of trainors in support to the Agri PinoyFramework, livelihood and strengthening of 4-H Clubs, in addition to trainings on production, ofwhich are mainly in support to the Palayamanan Program.Technology Demonstration and Extension ProjectsTechnology demonstrations and extension projects were established to showcase updatedtechnologies on specific commodities. For this year, a total of 1,419 techno demos were establishedand maintained including those in support to the HVCC program. These activities wereimplemented in collaboration with the farmers, LGUs, DepEd , PhilRice, Bureau of Soils and WaterManagement, SUCs, Non-government organizations and DA-RFUs.8
  • 9. Training and Other Extension Related ActivitiesFor CY 2010, the Institute served a total of 72,668 beneficiaries nationwide. All the ATI regionalcenters performed their functions in providing efficient extension services to numerous farmerclients and as reported, Region 1 conducted the most number of trainings and extension relatedactivities. CARAGA Region HAD the highest number of beneficiaries. The Central Office (CO) alsoconducted activities for its clients and beneficiaries. NO. OF TRAINING AND REGION/CO OTHER RELATED NO. OF BENEFICIARIES ACTIVITIES CAR 59 6,519 REGION 1 158 7,855 REGION 2 132 1,811 REGION 3 48 5,890 REGION 4A 131 2,153 REGION 4B 44 3,038 REGION 5 83 3,700 REGION 6 106 3,980 REGION 7 101 4,075 REGION 8 97 3,205 REGION 9 49 3,580 REGION 10 79 4,114 REGION 11 64 4,918 REGION 12 105 1,074 ARMM 21 1,906 CARAGA 152 10,511 Central Office 27 2,200 ITCPH 97 2,139 TOTAL 1,553 72,668 Table 4. Distribution of activities and beneficiaries by region on training and extension related.9
  • 10. Figure 1 Indigenous people in Brgy. Babaclayon, San Jose de Buan, Samar.Farm and Business Advisory Services (FBAS)Call queries and consultancies as well as direct technical assistance provided to walk-in clientsregistered a number of 4,055 and served 7,155 individuals. No. of technical REGION No. of beneficiaries/clients assistance provided CAR 14 210 REGION 1 339 338 REGION 2 169 821 REGION 3 14 15 REGION 4A 309 627 REGION 4B 15 80 REGION 5 30 86 ITCPH 2313 2233 REGION 6 217 343 REGION 7 174 1223 REGION 8 10 227 REGION 9 17 44 REGION 10 33 471 REGION 11 36 36 CARAGA 363 402 TOTAL 4,055 7,155 Table 5. Distribution of FBAS by region.10
  • 11. School- on- the- Air. Director Asterio P. Saliot and Asst. Directort Alberto B. Maningding in one of SOA graduation ceremonies.Amidst the existence of several multimedia for delivering agricultural extension services, radio stillwaved it’s effectiveness through the School-on-Air (SOA). The conventional communication is stillconsidered as one of the top effective means of disseminating technical information to theInstitute’s clienteles For CY 2010, 9 SOAs were implemented in all the Regional Training Centersexcept CAR and ITCPH with a total of 4,946 graduates. The SOA focused on rice (Palaycheck, andHVCC (Palayamanan with organic farming techniques).School-on-the-air graduation ceremonies and TOT Palayamanan were conducted in some regionaltraining centers that targeted specific goals for extension service while utilizing the radio as amedium for development agriculture topics. This provides ease for distance learning mode foreducating farmers, fisherfolk and extension workers through the use of radio as the communicationmedium.To ensure quality and generate innovative approaches, the Institute conducted the 1st SOA NationalAssessment and Planning Workshop. This aimed to assess the effectiveness of the implementationof the SOA programs wherein concerns and problems were ascertained and given solutions. Therecommendations made will guide the future programs to be more successful and effective to largeraudiences. The SOA Handbook was also modified to become more effective guide.Education SupportYouth for Agriculture and Fisheries Scholarship Program (YAFP) In ensuring success of the 1st Batch of YAFP with some 342 scholars continuing their classes for the Second Semester of SY 2009-2010, the Institute implemented a strict monitoring and technical assistance. This became crucial as the ATI anticipates more actions for program improvement based on the result of monitoring and evaluation of its first year of implementation.11
  • 12. Region 10 YAFP and EHRDP scholars with Dir. Asterio P. Saliot.Expanded Human Resource Development Program (EHRDP) The start of 2010 saw progress in the effort to tie up with Higher Learning institutions to upgrade the knowledge and skills of public agriculture managers and personnel. Through a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), the ATI contracted with the Development Center for Asia Africa Pacific (DCAAP) to develop the capability of extension agencies and personnel in managing extension programs and projects. For the year 2010, two national trainings for 72 middle- level agriculture managers were conducted.The ATI also offers scholarships programs for degree and non-degree training related to agricultureand fisheries for DA staff, LGU and SUC personnel. To date, there were 131 MS degree and 23 PhDgrantees. The scholarship program also provided 11 dissertations and 11 thesis assistance tograntees from the DA line agencies, LGUs, and SUCs. ATI conducts scholarship management and program implementation assessment (L) and dialogue with YAPF scholars at SPAMAST, Davao (R).12
  • 13. Capacitating the ATI PersonnelStaff development is one important activity of the Institute, thus, capacity building to enhance boththe knowledge and skills of technical and administrative staff were conducted. Activities whichpromoted close camaraderie and teambuilding among the staff were also instituted. The InstituteATI management committee poses above during the thconduct of the 10 Management Review in Siquijor. ATI Personnel Officers pose with Deputy Director Evelyn Aro-Esquejo after the culmination of their training on human capital Development.The M and E officers on their courtesy call with Gov. Imee R. Marcosduring their training in Ilocos Nortealso sent ATI staff to trainings/workshops abroad; namely: sustainable development learning,sustainable environment management, alternative energy, agricultural extension delivery system,ASEAN Farmers Week, and mushroom production. These were held in United States of America,Thailand, Korea and Taiwan.13
  • 14. Sources of FundsThe Rice program attributed the highest funding among all banner programs in 2010. This wasfollowed by the HVCC/Crops commodity and 4H Club Youth Development Program. Other sourcesof funds were from DA-RFU and Diversified Farm Information and Marketing Development Program(DFIMDP) and special funds and from the participants’ registration. Funds for Regular, Corn, EHRDP,FSTP and Livestock followed in a descending order. Others (Participants, DFIMDP, etc.) Livestock Regular Rice FSTP EHRDP Crops/HVCC Corn 4H funds 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700Fig. 5. Sources of fundsIncreasing Clients’ Access to AF Data,Information and KnowledgeKnowledge SystemsInformation and Communication TechnologyThe ATI main site is being updated and maintained by the KPMD with 23 local area network and 155work stations.Electronic Extension for Agriculture and FisheriesThe e-Extension Program of the ATI is proactive in its mission of delivering efficient extensionservices to farmer clientele that even reached the international arena. The ATI staff, headed by ATIDirector Asterio P. Saliot, teamed up the e-Extension group to US Group on Electronic ExtensionTrends with KPMD-Chief Antonietta J. Arceo and Asst. Chief Pamela G. Mappala.The Philippine team also presented the “Philippines e-Extension and the Use of Mobile Phones inKnowledge Sharing” to show how the e-Extension Program improved agricultural extension in thePhilippines. The mission aimed to form a worldwide virtual community of content and extensionexperts around selected specialization through a Global Extension Network that will be established.The Global Electronic Network will provide information exchange that would soon lead to a globalcooperation on e-Extension initiatives.14
  • 15. Internet has been utilized by ATI through the creation of ATIiNteractive website that served morefarmer clientele here and abroad. And, to become more reachable to more web users the websitemust take the lead in ranking of search results related to agriculture and fisheries extension. ATIwebmasters aim to increase the presence of the Institutes website on search engines such asGoogle, Yahoo, and Microsoft Bing.E-LearningTo date, the Institute was able to develop a total of 18 e-Learning courses, all offered in the sitewww.e-extension.gov.ph/elearning, wherein there were 1,520 enrolees in the courses and 1,009graduates. # Course Title Enrollees Graduates 1 Abaca1.02 12 9 2 Abaca2 8 2 3 Agrimark1 107 86 4 AI 5 5 5 Bamboo1 47 30 6 Banana1 284 234 7 Banana2 48 40 8 Citrus1 78 40 9 Coffee1 69 47 10 Corn1 143 69 11 Durian1 37 16 12 Goat1 142 97 13 Goat2 52 40 14 Greenhouse1.2 129 62 Jackfruit1 8 2 15 Jackfruit1.01 21 13 16 Organic1 146 92 17 Seaweed1 46 36 18 Yam1 138 89 Total 1,520 1,009 Table 6. Distribution of enrolees and graduates by e-courses.E-farming through the Farmers’ Contact Center (FCC)A total of 12,373 queries were answered by the FCC for the whole year of 2010. These queries wereon the various technologies for agriculture and fisheries, marketing- related concerns, pests anddiseases, and those related to e-Learning, and on ATI.15
  • 16. Category Total Number of Queries Call 684 E-mail 1,744 Shout box and IM 1,293 Forum 623 Text 8,029 TOTAL 12,373 Table 7. Distribution of queries by category.Knowledge Products Development To provide access to AF knowledge and information to its clients, the Institute was able to distribute 53,919 information materials in print and video forms to the extension workers, farmers, fishers, women, youth, and other stakeholders in agricultural extension throughout the country. These information materials that the Institute was able to distribute includes meat processing kit, vegetable production guides, swine raising, duck raising, aromatic rice, compost making, El Niño, Dairy, Organic Rice Farm primer, Kawayan technology, Kompos and Kabut, Kaligain ang Mundo, Pagsugpo sa uod ng Palay, Likas Kayang Pagsasaka, Pagsusuri ng Resulta ng Bangon Na Magsasaka, and commodity profiles on Banana, Corn and Durian.Special ProjectsInstitutionalization of Techno GabayIn preparation for the institutionalization of the Techno Gabay Program, consultations and meetingswith DOST-PCARRD were conducted. The Institute assisted in the preparation of the IRR of the EO801. It also conducted trainings for resource person and facilitator on IEC development for FITSCenter in Region 7.Aurora e-Village Project (Providing Greater Access to the Rural Families of AuroraProvince: Connecting Villages amidst Mountains through ICT)Through the Aurora e-Village Project, the Institute conducted the “Basic ICT Literacy TrainingCourse” for the farmers, agricultural-based organizations/cooperatives, traders agribusinessentrepreneurs, and local government staff of the province of Baler, Aurora. The said project aims tointegrate and utilize ICT to augment the status of living of the people in the community. This projectwas initiated by Senator Edgardo J. Angara and is implemented by ATI and PhilRice together with theDevelopment Academy of the Philippines (DAP) and the Provincial Government of Aurora (PGA).16
  • 17. Integrated Voice Response –Nutrient Management in RiceIn collaboration with the International Research Institute, the ATI will implement this program in2011 which basically provides updates on technical information on the scientific principle in makingfield-specific nutrient management recommendations. In preparation for its implementation, the ATIstaff and other stakeholders attended the DA-IRRI workshop which also provided opportunities toexchange experiences and information on the evaluation and dissemination of location-specificnutrient management practices for rice.Improving Extension Programs andPartnershipsStrengthening the RBOs, Indigenous peopleThe key modalities that this program adopted are focused on strengthening the rural-basedorganizations (RBO), 4-H Clubs, Rural Improvement Clubs (RIC), League of Municipal AgriculturalOfficers, Municipal and City Agriculturist of the Philippines (LeMMCAP), Pambansang Mananalon,Magbabaul, Mag-uuma at Magsasaka ng Pilipinas (P4MP), Federation of Farmers’ Association andindigenous people.The RBOs were updated with the current situation of the agriculture and fishery sector in thecountry. Specifically, the Institute provided the avenue for the exchange of experiences, knowledgeand information on current agricultural technologies and agribusiness opportunities throughconventions, consultations and congress.The Institute continued to support the 4H-Clubs all over the Philippines through its training andeducation, organizational strengthening and support to livelihood activities. It has made significantstrides in addressing the needs of the 4-H Clubs around the country. This program aimed to developthe capability of the 4-H members as potential leaders in advancing agriculture growth and ruraldevelopment. For the CY year 2010, a total of Php 1,250,000.00 was allocated to each region exceptARMM to carry out the 335 livelihood programs of the 4-H clubs. These were on livestock17
  • 18. Swine raising is one of the 335 livelihood projects being carried out by the 4-H Club nationwide under theYouth in Agriculture Program of the ATI.production ( goat raising, fattener production, poultry production, cattle and carabao raising,nursery, rice production and retailing, crops production, (mushroom, ampalaya, organic vegetablegarden), fish and fish paste production, food and meat processing, herbal medicine processing, andmany others.CooperativesThe Institute also empowered the cooperatives and its interventions were focused on capacitatingthe coop’s members and officers on pre-membership education, cooperative book and accountingand experience-based enhancement. These activities were mostly conducted in Region 12, ARMM,CAR and in Region 4-A through the International Training Center on Pig Husbandry.In addition, the Institute in collaboration with the Cooperative Development Authority hosted theASEAN Exchange Visit for Cooperative Leaders and Personnel which was attended by participantsfrom Myanmar, Lao PDR, Malaysia and Philippines. ASEAN Exchange Visit for Cooperative Leaders and Personnel18
  • 19. The National Farmer-Scientists Research, Development and Extension Training Program (FSTP)under Executive Order 710 The Farmers’ Scientist Training Program was implemented in the LGUs in partnerships with theUniversity of the Philippines. The Appreciation Course in the Implementation of FSTP E.O 710 for theTechnical Working Group (TWG) was attended by the members of the TWG from different agencieslike Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Environment and Natural Resources(DENR), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), University of the Philippines-LosBaños (UPLB), Department of Science and Technology-PCCARD, PMS, and DA-GMA Corn Program Series of training of trainers (TOT) was conducted by FSTP-UPLB team in Regions IV-B and Region 5,7 under the facilitation of the regional ATI staff in said regions on a staggered basis. The output ofthe said program was the FSTP Work and Financial Plan for 2010-2011.Accredited Extension Service Providers (ESPs)To expand the implementation of the extension programs in the country and to increase investmentin extension, accreditation of ESPs was done by the Institute. Two (2) ESPs were accredited at thenational level, namely: Development Center for Asia –Africa Pacific (DCAAP) which is a Manila-based international, research and consulting self-financed and non-profit non governmentorganization and the Foundation for People Development. Commissioned to conduct capacitybuilding training courses for DA and ATI personnel, DCAAP conducted nine training courses onDevelopment Management, Organizational Development, Development Management, ParticipatoryApproaches in Extension, Agribusiness Management and Community Participation in AgriculturalDevelopment. Also accredited were the Integrated Cooperative Towards Unified Services (Region12), Extension Institute for Small-Scale Industries, St. Louis University in CAR, Negros IslandSustainable Agriculture and Rural Development Foundation Incorporated (Region 7) and MarandingWomen Investor Multipurpose Cooperative (Region 10).Improving the Quality of Agriculture andFisheries GovernanceAs a take-off to the improvement of governance in extension, a series of workshops on ‘PagbabagoTungo Sa Matuwid Na Daan : Building A More Responsive and Dynamic AF Extension in the Country2011 & Beyond’ was conducted for the staff of ATI at the central office, and in the three zones :Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. These activities aimed to provide a paradigm shift in formulating theextension programs of the Institute in support to Agri Pinoy Framework and address interventionsalong the value chain. These are pathways to the provision of “new” AF extension services in thecountryside Pagbabago Workshop Series (L) and the Training Workshop on Assessment of Programs of the Millennium Development Goals (R).19
  • 20. Noted was the success in the development of the IEC Strategic Plan with proper consultation withstakeholders, particularly the AFEN. The Institute was also able to draft national standards forextension, which will eventually serve as a yardstick in the implementation of extension servicesnationwide.The Institute also conducted the 2009 Annual Review and 2011 Planning Workshop cum Anniversarywhich aimed to assess the accomplishment done by the Institute on its program implemented basedon its target. An innovation to this annual exercise was the defense of the RTCs of their 2010realigned work and financial plan. One of the highlights in the celebration of the 23rd anniversarywas the tree planting at the Quezon City Circle. It also conducted the 10th Management andmidyear reviews to assess the implementation of the Institute activities based on the ISO Guidelinesand Standards and for the first semester of the year, respectively. A Conference Workshop on Harmonizing the AF Indicator System was also conducted and was attended by the member of the AFEN with the presence of DBM and DA staff. In order to arrive at relevant principles or rules to guide decisions and achieve rational outcomes for the Institute, ATI needed to follow policies as basis for organizational decisions. It also conducted training for the improvement of its quality management system, quality of services, personnel management, as well as monitoring and evaluation. Asst. Dir. ABManingding with the expert. Mr. Varian Ojeda Dir. APSaliot and Asst. Dir. EAEsquejo with the and participants participants. The Institute also tapped the knowledge and skills of the DA-RFU, SUCs and AFEN members and personnel on policy formulation and global competitiveness.20
  • 21. Involvement in Foreign-funded Projects Linkages and partnerships among other international organizations enable to strengthen the foundation of the Institute. Moreover, it provides more avenues for widening its reach and establishing good reputation to other potential stakeholders. The Institute coordinated programs and project proposals with the following international organizations. JICA Proposal on Technical Assistance Project for Capacity Development towards Farm-Family Centered Agricultural Extension System is now on the pipeline pending the approval of the Extension Bill. The Institute also facilitated the implementation of the Malitubog-Maridagao Irrigation Project II (MALMAR II). The goal of the project is poverty reduction through sustainable agricultural and social development and contributes to sustaining peace in the project area coverage within the provinces of Cotabato and Maguindanao. The specific objectives are; a) to increase household income, b) to improve living condition of farmer beneficiaries in the area, c) to ensure food sufficiency, d) to contribute in improving sustainable peace and order condition in the project area. In preparation for this project, reviews of the implementation plan and operations manual of MALMAR were conducted.Food and Agriculture OrganizationThe Institute had collaborated with the FAO in its project entitled “Capacity Building of Small ScaleFarmers on Market Access and Entrepreneurship” in collaboration with the DA-AMAS. This wasdesigned to make small Filipino farmers competitive by improving their knowledge and skills in farmbusiness management. The project is proposing for a US$ 488,932 funding from FAO. A technicalexpert from FAO had already made his initial mission during the last quarter of the year.It was also involved in the implementation of the Project “Increasing Rice Yield and Productivitythrough the Promotion of Small-Scale Irrigation and Integrated Crop Management Systems inRainfed Areas. A 12-day training was conducted to develop a core of SSIS-FFS Facilitators onIntegrated Farming and Palayamanan with Palaycheck and LSTD and small-scale irrigation system. World Bank The Institute was also involved in a World Bank funded project -Philippine Adaptation Climate Change Program of the Department of Agriculture where ATI teamed-up with the BSWM in Program Sub-Component 2.2 : Enhancing delivery and effectiveness of extension services for farm- level climate risk management. The sub-component will still start in year 2012 with an initial funding of P11 million. IFAD-EU ATI was also involved in Irrigated Rice Production Enhancement Program under Component 3- Provision of production inputs and related support services of the RAFPEP project. For this year, the Institute through, its regional training centers in Regions 8 and 10, had implemented Training of Trainors and Farmers’ Field Schools for Irrigators Associations.21
  • 22. Cross Cutting ThemesClimate Change Adaptation StrategiesThe Institute during its celebration of the 23rd Anniversary had initiated the planting of more than200 mahogany trees at the Quezon City Circle. As a replication to this activity, its networknationwide had also implemented tree planting programs (Adopt a Barangay, Tree for Life Programs)which resulted to the planting of about 2,665 fruit and (guyabano, star apple, mango, guava,rambutan, lanzones, grafted durian, jackfruit, avocado, lanzones and santol) and forest trees (gmelina, narra, budded rubber, ipil-ipil, coconut seedlings mahogany, pili, cacao, and Indian trees.These activities were done in cooperation with DEPEd, LGUs, YAPF scholars, 4-club Federation,farmers, LGU extension workers, barangay officials and National VLAP officers and members, andIndigenous People.In addition, trainings, techno demos, foras, symposia, briefings and many others were conducted todisseminate information on adaptation strategies to address the effects of climate change in thecountry. Workshops were also done to come up with Municipal Agricultural Office’s Climate ChangeAdaptation and Mitigation Plan. It also distributed information materials to increase awareness onthe impact of climate change.Tree planting in Region 10 with Dir. Asterio P. Saliot and Tree planting at Quezon City CircleATI Region 10 staffFor the year, the Institute had conducted 81 various activities benefiting not only the 772 clients,with 1,976 male and 11,746 female beneficiaries but also the concerned municipalities andbarangays. These activities were done in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture-RegionalField Units (DA-RFUs), Local Government Units (LGUs), State Universities and Colleges (SUCs), Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs), RBOs, and other national government agencies such as PAG-ASA, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and others. In collaboration with the Department of Agriculture, together with the DOST- Philippine Council for Agriculture Forestry and Natural Resources research and Development (DOST-PCCARD), DA Bureau of Soils and Water Management (DA-BSWM), Organic Procedures and Traders Association (OPTA), the DA-Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Product Standards (DA-BAFPS), DA-Regional Field Unit VI and the Provincial Government of Antique, the Agricultural Training Institute conducted the Organic Agriculture Forum Series. The forum tackled the latest update about the Republic Act 10068 or the Organic Agriculture Act. Other topics discussed were about the technology transfer and extension strategies to augment and effectively implement other ATI programs.22
  • 23. Gender and Development InterventionsThe Institute mainstreamed in its programs the issue of gender concerns by ensuring a fair genderbalance among the beneficiaries. Programs and activities to improve women’s access to and benefitfrom agricultural development, expand the economic opportunity through micro-finance andenhance women participation in nation building were implemented during the year. About 48% ofthe total beneficiaries who are women benefited from the agricultural farm employment and non-rural farm employment opportunities provided by the Institute through its livelihood and skillstraining programs.Nutrition and Food SafetyThe Institute was also actively pursuing interventions to address nutrition, food safety and client’shealth issues. These were also incorporated in the training programs provided by the Instituteparticularly on food and meat processing modules. It was also closely coordinating with theNutrition-Research Information Network in the conduct of activities such as Nutri-fair focusing onclientele’s health and nutrition.23
  • 25. NOT JUST AN ORDINARY FARMER By: Noemi Beth G. Macario He considers himself as just one ordinary farmer. But Renie Palomera is not just ordinary inthe eyes of his fellow farmers. When a fellow farmer needs quality job, he goes to Renie knowingthat they will get their money’s worth. Farmers in his barangay who engage in hybrid rice productioncall on Renie to do the seedbed preparation and transplanting in their respective farms, knowingthat his expertise in the field is unquestionable. Hybrid rice production calls for quality management from the seedbed to harvesting. Thehigh cost of hybrid seeds limits the quantity of seeds planted per hectare. Because of this, care mustbe instilled in seedbed preparation so that there will be enough seedlings to be transplanted.Normally, farmers use a minimum of 40 kg. of seeds for transplanted inbred rice. However, therecommendation for hybrid seeds is only 10-20 kg. per hectare. Thus, Renie’s expertise in seedbedpreparation and transplanting is much needed. Renie’s attitude towards farming is way ahead from his contemporaries. He welcomestrainings to improve his craft. When ATI-NTC, then based at Central Mindanao University conductedtrainings on Seedbed Preparation and Transplanting, Renie was one of the participants. After thetraining he went back and organized a group of transplanters and instructed them on the properway of seedpulling and transplanting. To date his group is composed of 13 farmers who are also asyoung and as cooperative as he is. Renie once again attended the training on Total Quality and Productivity Management(TQPM) in Rice Production and became a farmer-cooperator. He had his first taste of harvestingalmost 8 tons of hybrid rice during that season. He was also a participant and partner in the Farmer-Led Extension implemented by DA-ATI. Presently, he is once again a participant in the PalayCheckSeason-long Training. All these are being conducted by the ATI. Renie’s learnings are put to good use. Aside from forming a group of in-demandtransplanters, he is a trusted maintainer. Lately, he is starting to till his own area. He said he isstarting small, but with proper resource management, professional work ethics, and a deep andabiding Faith in the Almighty, the future looks bright for Renie and his family.25
  • 26. PROGRAM COLLABORATOR’S TESTIMONY MS. PAZ A. CUTAMORA City FYDP Coordinator, General Santos City The 4H Youth Development Program is soaring for greater heights and making the best better. The extensive support extended made the youth empowered and mobilized. Livelihood support coupled with capacity building made youth more efficient and self reliant entrepreneurs to sustain the realization of developing the 4Hers. The government must continue its efforts with close collaboration among stakeholders. Likewise, the front liners, especially 4H coordinators, should be given due recognition for their passion to make a difference in the lives of 4Hers. THE BARANGAY OFFICIAL As related by: Angelito Y. Quirog, Ph.D, ATI Region 10I am FERNANDO F. TUBALE, 44 years old, a barangay kagawad, and a resident of San Martin,Malaybalay City. I am a lowland rice farmer for quite sometime cultivating a 2.5 hectare rice landfeeding a family of five members.I am proud to say that I am a farmer. I have high hopes that I could give a better life to my familythrough farming, having heard that farmers in other countries are known to be rich. However,through the years that I spent in farming, I was slowly losing hope. My income in farming is still notsufficient to give my family a privileged life. Fortunately before I became totally discouraged, I wasinvited to two very significant trainings that really helped me in my farming. I attended the Farmer-Led Extension and Palaycheck System trainings way back in 2006 and 2008, respectively. This wasconducted by ATI-RTC X in collaboration with the City Agriculture Office of Malaybalay City.Both trainings were very informative and enjoyable. I saw it as the opportunity to develop myfarming techniques. The Farmer-Led Extension training focused on how to grow hybrid rice.Despite the feared Bacterial Leaf Blight infecting almost all varieties of hybrid rice and the shift ofpractice from direct seeding to transplanting. I still planted hybrid rice and shared the technology Ilearned with my farmer neighbors. It was a sad reality in the field and that it takes guts to growhybrid rice in Malaybalay City during those days. However, despite the limitations, there is profit ingrowing hybrid rice. Armed with such knowledge and experience in the field, I opted to plant highyielding inbred rice varieties during the wet season when quality seeds of suitable and tested hybridvarieties were not available on time I planted the hybrid rice during the next dry season.The second opportunity was the training on palaycheck system that I participated. It made merealize that a lot of effective improvement need to be and can still be implemented to enhance myfarming practices that would eventually improve my yield. The training improved further myknowledge and skills. In the palaycheck system before anything else I set my target yield first. Thetarget yield will inspire and guide me to select rice varieties having a yield potential from 7 tons perhectare and higher, yet with certain tolerance to major insect pests and diseases in our locality. Isupplemented my target yield with the best practices recommended in the different keychecks.26
  • 27. Besides, I strongly worked to rehabilitate the natural fertility of my farm soil that is why I sustainedthe use of bio-organic fertilizer.Needless to say, before the two trainings, the range of my field weight yield was only 3.6 – 4.0 tonsper hectare. But with my efforts, aspirations and determination after the trainings, my field weightyield slowly started to rise up from a range of 5.4 tons per hectare and just recently to 8.188 tonsper hectare using SL8 hybrid rice variety. I am determined to produce 10 tons per hectare fieldweight yield in the very near future.My ricefield income and profit enabled me to buy two motorcycles and a mud boat engine. Themost important investment I made with my farm income were for the education of my two daugherswho both recently graduated in their nursing courses at the same time.Being a barangay official and a concerned farmer I will continue to share my experiences andaspirations to my neighbors and friends in the agriculture sector so that in one way or another I canhelp in addressing the food sufficiency program of the government.In closing, I wish to extend my heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the Agricultural Training Institute –Regional Training Center X and the City Agriculture Office of Malaybalay for the great opportunity todevelop my self-confidence, aspirations, farming knowledge and skills and ultimately myproductivity. It is also my wish to be able to attend a Season-Long Training on Bio-Dynamics….Again, THANK YOU AND MAY GOD BLESS US ALL.I love farming because (it brings out in me my competitive drive) it always have a room forimprovement. It allows me to aspire to excel (All this) so that eventually, I can give my family abetter life. SOA TESTIMONIES As compiled by Noemi Beth G. Macario “Before I enrolled in the SOA on PalayCheck System in Rice Production, I already have knowledge in rice production. However, when I listened to the radio, I realized that I still have a lot to learn especially in managing my ricefield. I realized that it is important to use quality seeds if I want to get a higher yield. I would like to thank ATI-RTC 10, Princess Lily, the Anchor and our Agricultural Technologist, Ms. Elizabeth Jurolan for the knowledge I have gained.” Ernesto G. Espartero; 69 y.o. tilling 3.5 has. From Managok, Malaybalay City27
  • 28. “Though the airing of the SOA on PalayCheck is very early in the morning, I still make it a point to listen to the program. I am really happy that I enrolled in the program. I have learned a lot about rice farming which I can use in our farm.” Isidro Valmoria; Cabangahan, Malaybalay City “In listening at the SOA on PalayCheck System in Rice Production, I have really learned a lot. Before, I was really in a hurry to plant. So after harvest, I immediately use the mud boat twice then plant immediately. I do not do deep plowing using a carabao. But now that I have learned the proper way of land preparation, then I would follow. Even if the deep plowing will entail a bigger expense, but I understood that the weeds must be plowed under and that it has to be decomposed. Also, I understood the need of deep plowing so that the roots can go deeper. My husband is not a farmer and we usually argue a lot. Then he won’t attend trainings. However, now that he has also listened in the radio, he is now convince to try the methods that were taught . I would like to thank ATI-RTC 10 for conducting this SOA because I have realized my mistakes in terms of farming” Merie Bullecer of Lantapan, Bukidnon MEANT TO GO TO COLLEGE By: Fernando D. Sampilo Jr., YAPF Scholar A few days after I graduated from high school, mymother told me that they cannot send me to college because oflack of money. I suggested the possibility of attending a state-owned Institution but they still cannot afford it. They said,maybe next year. I was saddened by the news but I understoodour situation. I am the eldest of the family. My brothers arenow in high school and one is graduating, and, I still had twoyounger sisters. I would rather sacrifice and let my brotherfinish high school.28
  • 29. But God is really good. My mother went to our Barangay Office and inquired for anyscholarship available for me. My mother was so happy when they gave the information about theATI-scholarship for the children of small farmers. My mother felt that the scholarship is a sign fromGod that I was meant to go to College. That night, I was amazed as I read the privileges one can getfrom this scholarship. WOW! I told myself. If only I can qualify for this, I will be one of the luckiestpersons. But going through my reading, I found out the requirements and conditions that a scholarmust do to maintain the scholarship. My mother said, “‘ya, makaya kaha na nimu?” (Do you thinkyou can meet the requirements?) Then my mother cried. I also cannot stop my tears but I told her,“ma ayaw mo kabalaka duha ni papa, kaya lagi nako ni.” (Mom and Dad, don’t you worry, I canmeet the requirements). I trust myself and I am confident of my abilities. Besides, God gave us thisopportunity. If ever I will be accepted, I vowed to never disappoint my parents or the sponsors. It was hard for us to complete the requirements needed for we do not have the money tosecure the required documents. Still my mother found a way by borrowing money from her friend.The hardest document to produce is the authenticated Birth Certificate. I heard that it is not easy toget an authenticated Birth Certificate from NSO. Then I remembered that during the summer breakwhen I worked as a Habal-Habal (single motor) driver, one of my passengers was a Muslim lady whowas working at NSO. She told me that she is willing to help me if ever I need to secure anauthenticated birth certificate. Although, it has been a long time that she told me, I was optimisticthat she is still with NSO and will help me. I was not mistaken. She helped me and I was able tocomplete the requirements needed for my application. It seems God has really paved the way for meto get the scholarship. And now I’m happy to be one of the YAFP scholars. I used to be shy but now, my scholarshiphelped changed mental and emotional aspects of my life. First week in college I really got homesick. Iwanted to go home but I have since learned to adjust to college life. I told myself, not to cry when Imiss my family but instead make them as my inspirations. And here I am now, a productive personwho will soon serve the people. The staff at ATI were really very helpful. They even invited me toattend their trainings which exposed me to other people especially the Agricultural ExtensionWorkers and other 4H Club members. BECOMING A BETTER MAN By: Pat F. Dumaloan I’m Pat F. Dumaloan, 33 years of age, married and blessed with three kids. Presentlyresiding at Zone 3, Poblacion, Claveria, Misamis Oriental. I’ve been connected with the LocalGovernment Unit of Claveria through the Office of the Municipal Agriculturist as an AgriculturalTechnologist. I’ve been in the government service for almost 10 years. Being an Agricultural Technologist, one of my actual duties is to attend a stakeholder’smeeting with other partner agencies towards community development. Then one day, I’ve attendeda joint meeting on Abaca production Project held at Center for Lifelong Education, Misamis OrientalState College of Agriculture and Technology (CLE-MOSCAT). During lunch break, I’ve had aconversation with Dr. Elizar M. Elmundo, the Director for Research, Development and ExtensionOffice of MOSCAT and he mentioned to me about the EHRDP Scholarship of the DA-ATI. Heexplained to me that EHRDP is a full scholarship grant for master’s degree. According to him, sinceI’m an Agricultural Technologist, its better for me to grab that opportunity because it only happenedonce in a blue moon particularly on the municipal level. Afterwards, he really convinced me to availthe program and to be enrolled in MOSCAT.29
  • 30. Few days after, I told my Boss in our office of my desire to apply for scholarship under theEHRDP. Fortunately, I was allowed by my Boss as long as I will still report to office. This is really agreat opportunity for me particularly on building my career. Then, I began downloading therequired documents from the website of ATI Regional Training Center-X. Right on deadline, I’vesubmitted all the necessary documents to the ATI Regional Office X at El Salvador, Misamis Oriental. As the days went by, I’m informed through text by Ma’amSonia Talibong of ATI that I’ve been qualified as one of the scholarsof EHRDP. That time, no words can describe what I felt inside. It wasreally mixed emotions: happiness, excitement, eagerness, fear andanxiety. I said to myself, I would do my very best in everything I canin order to pursue my dreams of getting a master’s degree. Right now, I’m already in my second year here at MOSCATand hopefully I will be graduating by March 2011. Eventhough I hadbeen through several hardships and challenges, I am still coping with the demands of school andoffice work. One thing for sure, the learnings I’ve acquired from my professors has been applied. Personally, I became a better man. My attitudes have been changed for the better. Ibecame more optimistic not like before where I’m easily discouraged or dismayed. I’ve learned tovalue the feelings of others and became more considerate. It really taught me to be a better man.On my family, I became a more responsible husband. On the community, I’ve participated on anyactivities especially religious ones. I’ve realized the value of involvement. On my work, theknowledge that I’ve acquired helps me a lot in disseminating new technologies to the farmers. Ibecame confident in sharing what I know especially in conducting trainings to our clientele. Asidefrom those being mentioned, there were still several changes that happened to me which I cannotput in words. Finally, I would like to end my testimony with a saying that goes “education was anornament in prosperity and a refuge in adversity”. Education made us what we are. And of course, Iwould like to express my heartfelt gratitude to the management of ATI Central and Regional Officesfor giving me this once in a lifetime opportunity. Best wishes to all of you. FINDING WEALTH IN MUSHROOMS By: Teodosia D. Jaraba, ATI Region 10 Mr. Pedro P. Mariquit, 56 yrs of age and concurrent President of TSEP-RLI VegetableGrowers Association of Barangay Luinab, Iligan City is a mushroom grower and a mushroom spawnproducer. He is a vegetable farmer and the farmer-cooperator of the TSEP-RLI project implementedby ATI-RTC X. Mr. Mariquit is a high school graduate and a father of six (6) children. A man ofintegrity and character, he is friendly, accommodating, innovative, hardworking and resourceful inhis farming endeavor. He had attended several trainings, but considers the trainings conducted by the AgriculturalTraining Institute Regional Training Center X as very relevant and timely. The trainings includeNature Farming Technology conducted in June 2009, Training on Vegetables Production in supportto Gulayan ng Masa Program, Training on Organic Farming, Vermiculture and Vermicomposting andTrichoderma Composting. However, the trainings which greatly helped him add to his income is the30
  • 31. training on Mushroom Production and Marketing and shortly thereafter the training on MushroomSpawn Production. He was faced with problems and difficulties in his farm, such as the high cost of chemicalfertilizers, low productivity and attack of different kinds of insect pests and diseases. That is why heis open to attend trainings. He feels lucky because he learns many things that address the problemsthat he faces in the field. Trainings also widened his network of friends and clientele. He produced the concoctions such as FPJ, FFJ, Caphos, OHN, FAA and IMO and used it in hisvegetable and rootcrops area. He has also a small area beside his residence for his vermicompostingwhich he also uses in his plants. He also ventured into mushroom growing using the VolvariellaVolvacea variety. At first, he planned to engage in mushroom growing for his family consumption.But seeing the opportunity of a market for mushroom as evidenced by the growing number ofneibors asking for sample, he decided to engage in mushroom production commercially. He nowproduces mushrooms and also sells mushroom spawn not only in Iligan City but also in some areas inLanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental. He also raises few heads of goats andcow to supplement his income. The situation has helped him augment his income, increase his productivity with theapplication of the foliar fertilizers and has sustained the daily needs of his family. He continued toinnovate his practices, find better alternatives at a minimal cost. He says that”Based on my opinion,the training I have attended has helped me a lot. to become productive, innovative and resourceful.The technology I learned was very useful in the farm aside from being environment-friendly. I wasable to increase my income for our daily needs and medicines. I was able to buy additional cow,repair our residence and farm house and was able to send my children to school”. He was verythankful to ATI-RTC X because of the assistance it extended since the start until he was successful inhis spawn making endeavors. Mr. Mariquit is a generous person. He shares whatever he has learned from the trainings heattended and supplemented by his actual practices to other farmers and neighbors. He makeshimself available to other farmers, to the ATI and to other government agencies. Presently, he isconstantly invited in some parts of Lanao del Norte and Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental aslecturer and consultant in mushroom growing and spawn making. TANDEMS THAT CLICK Hazel Grace T. Taganas, ATI Region 8Overcoming “mouse-fears” Isn’t it strange that he who kills a field mouse with one blow is scared to click a computermouse, and he who skillfully clicks the computer mouse shouts at the sight of a field mouse?What if they team-up? Most farmers, if not all in Liloan, Southern Leyte are not computer literates. Although theyknow that it will fast-track information search, the thought of using computers scares them. If thisisn’t overcome, it would defeat the purpose of putting the ICT facility in the FITS center. Hence, theLiloan FITS staff adopted the “parent-child” tandem to maximize the use of ICT facility to search forinformation. A farmer who is hesitant to click a mouse to get the needed information is assisted byhis son/daughter who doesn’t think twice in dragging a mouse in search of new things. This startedin March 2007 when the FITS center’s Magsasaka Siyentista brought her daughter along to help her31
  • 32. get information from the net. From then on many parent-child tandems use the internet either toget information or link with loved ones in other places. The tandem brought significant change in the farmer’s attitude toward the use of ICT ingetting information. Although still hesitant to hold the mouse, many have already sat in front of thecomputer to watch how the search for information through the net is done. This strategy spread to other centers in the region. The FITS centers are challenged to trainat least three farmers and/or their sons/daughters a week on basic ICT use. This will lessen theworkload of FITS staff in assisting those who wish to get information from the net.The need goes beyond technological information With the FITS center manned by the Office of Municipal Agriculture staff, many thought thatthe ICT facility is exclusive for agriculture and fishery concerns only. Thus, farmers did not come into seek assistance for needs that go beyond technological information. This led to having anothertandem - the Techno Gabay ICT and Community e-Center (CeC) services integration. The integration was suggested by then ViCARP’s Director now RRDCC Chairperson Dr. Jose L.Bacusmo to former Mayor Marlo P. Maamo who readily implemented the idea by having both ICTfacilities housed in one area. With Mayor Shirlita Y. Chong presently at the helm, the Office of theMunicipal Agriculture in Liloan, Southern Leyte was transferred to the building where the FITS centerand the CeC-ICT room are located. The integration encourages many to seek assistance not just on agriculture and fishery.When the ICT services were first offered in February 2007, there were only few who accessed thenet. With the integration, many already visited the place and accessed the net for information. Clients who wait for their turn in the computer availed of the other services offered by thecenter. They get information on various technologies from reading available print materials orwatching commodity videos. This made them appreciate the center as a learning resource. Theyalso became captured customers of the products sold in the center and promoters through word ofmouth of the center’s services. With the tandem, instant messaging and e-mail services expanded to connecting with lovedones. This is in addition to surfing the net for information helpful to the farm and in seeking advicefrom experts in other centers or from the consortium.Improving ICT services With the opportunity to serve using the ICT facility comes also the challenge of doing it well.While FITS staff are capable of doing information and technology services, little do they know aboutICT utilization. This prompted the local officials to designate the Sangguniang Bayan computeroperator as the FITS information service specialist (ISS) and in-charge of the CeC. With the strong partnership of ViCARP where ATI 8 is member, and FITS Liloan, theequipping of the other staff on ICT was facilitated. The partnership enabled the pooling of resourcestogether for ICT training and other ICT-related activities. Thus, it is not only the FITS ISS serving theneed for ICT but the other staff as well. The load became lighter for the FITS staff who also providedencoding, printing and deskstop publishing services for a fee to generate fund for the center’soperational cost.32
  • 33. The partnership also makes the promotion of the FITS services easier. Together, they comeup with information materials and promote the center’s services during farmers’ gatherings. Thisattracted more customers to the center.The tandems connect The Liloan FITS center’s “tandem” strategies made a mark in the province of Southern Leytein its extension program. It became a model to other FITS centers and would-be FITS center in theprovince who visited the Liloan FITS center to learn of the strategy. Indeed, the tandems not only click but connect. EMBRACING FARMING Ermalinda B. Cayago, ATI Region 8 Fifty-year old Jessie Gunda Globio is the pride of Poblacion 2 in Balangkayan, Eastern Samarwho takes farming as his bread and butter. He went into farming because he saw the great potentialof the land entrusted to him by his parents and in-laws. These agricultural lands became his"classrooms" where he often stays from sunrise to dusk. They were witnesses of his passion tolearn by doing and in striving for more. The years he spent in the farm polished his farming skills,making him innovative, enterprising and progressive as he is today. Jessie is one of the few in the province of Eastern Samar who toiled not just for his own butfor others who depend on farmers for their food. He made farming as an enterprise to meet thedemand for agricultural food products. This made him to the roll of the roll of Magsasaka Siyentistasor farmer scientists who demonstrate and share to other farmers successful application of S&T-based and indigenous technologies. As Magsasaka Siyentista he tried protective cultivation oforganic vegetables. He grows sweet pepper, ampalaya, squash, sponge gourd, watermelon andother leafy vegetables during off-season which enables him to command higher prices. He alsogrows rice using hybrid seeds that made him produced more. His record in rice farming made himone of the certified seed growers of the Department of Agriculture in the region. As farmer scientist, he provides technical assistance and hands-on training to on-farmvisitors and to other trainees. He devotes portion of his farm as demonstration area where he testsand applies new technologies learned from seminars, trainings and cross visits; and serves asresource person or facilitator during trainings, field days, technology forums and other technologydissemination activities. Jessie advocates organic farming for safer and nutrious food, and for sustainability of theland to be productive. He was glad to visit one best organic farm in Negros Occidental where helearned some more on organic farming and saw its good produce. His hardwork and dedication to farming is contagious. He became a great influence to otherfarmers in adopting new technologies that enabled them to raise their production. He always shareswhat he learned. His farm is a showcase of information, learnings and experiences that otherscould readily access and apply in their farms. What he gets from his 6.5 hectares is money-maker. The 1.5 hectares devoted to certifiedseeds would earned him Php 120,000 per year. His vegetables, Php 70.000 per year and copra, Php40,000 per year. He has also other crops that contributed to the family purse. He has gabi, ube,kalamansi, and fruit trees like mango, pummelo and rambutan which are planted in the sloppingareas of the farm. His more than a thousand grafted mango and rambutan trees which are alreadyin its fruiting stage are sure big "add-ons" to what they already have.33
  • 34. Their harvests reached to the neighboring towns of Balangkayan. With such business flair,Jessie has proven that farming is like having a goldmine in ones farm. With new technology, onecan literally harvest daily. Jessie is never afraid to try new things, let alone fail. This could be one of the traits thatmade him stand out. He sees that trials and failures are opportunities for him to do better and toenhance his farming and entrepreneurial skills. He continues to be a good learner, applyingtechnologies that he believes would improve his productivity and profitability. Although Eastern Samar is typhoon-prone area, this does not deter him from farming butchallenge him to be more innovative in setting up mitigating measures to protect his crops, thus,lessening whatever damage brought about by natural phenomena.Farmer Awardee Jessie is a success story personified. His ingenuity in his chosen field did not go unnotice.Proofs of this are the various awards he received for his initiative, hardwork and commitment.He was awarded Outstanding Rice Farmer in their municipality in 2004. He also became theChairman of the Balangkayan Farmers Multi-Purpose Cooperative and appointed as CommitteeChairman of the Municipal Agriculture & Fishery Council. He was chosen one of the Board ofDirectors of the Association of Farmer Scientists of the Philippines Regional Chapter. In all his successes, Jessie is grateful to the DA-ATI 8, Office of the Provincial AgriculturalServices, VICARP through the Techno Gabay Program, and the DA-RFU 8 for empowering him,inviting him to trainings, seminars and educational tours where he learned better technologies andpractices. Among these technologies are organic farming, protected cultivation and integrated pestmanagement. He was glad to learn some control measures against pests using indigenous plants.The training certificates he accumulated showed his love to learn and his desire to hone further hisfarming skills. Looking at the vast expanse of his "classrooms" challenged him to do more and to let otherssee the good, the land could give. He believes that with the blessing of the Almighty, his labourswould not be in vain. He must have faith to surmount obstacles, the will to succeed, the passion topersevere and the hope to see the fruits of his hardwork.For Jessie, embracing farming is embracing a better living that gives meaning to life, a life he is proudto share with others. e-Learners’ TESTIMONIESFrom: Arlene Grace Mercado “Hi! Good day! I just want to say thank you, na-receive ko na ang certificates ko. More power!!!”From: Nilo Tronco “Thank you very much! I must say you guys did a great job on the first course on Goat Raising. It was really a great help. I cant wait to take the other courses. More Power to you guys!”34
  • 35. From: Rowena Odono “Thanks to all the course developers and others concerned. I just finished the course on Basic Agricultural Marketing Extension. It’s very refreshing and I really enjoy the test. We have acquired a lot of insights that may become a good project for my studies.”From: Mellanie Joy Magtibay “Hi ATI! Natapos ko na po ung Seaweed Farming. Thank you very much po. Great help po kayo sa mga students na kagaya ko na gustong madagdagan ang knowledge.”From: Jeoffrey Gervacio “Hello there! Im glad I became a member here at the e-Learning site. This is very important especially that we have a FITS Center.”From: Virgilio Paler, Jr. “Salamat sa bumubuo ng e-Extension Program. Malaking tulong talaga ito sa akin lalo na sa mga gusting matuto sa larangan ng agrikultura.”From: Eileen Herring “Thank you so much for your quick response. It is wonderful that you are able to provide these resources to so many Filipinos. Perhaps eventually you will have the resources to broaden your scope.... in the meantime, continue the great work!”From: Angelo Raya “Good Day! I would like to extend my gratitude for giving us farmers a direct line to voice our concern. This will be a big help to us”.From: Dexter Ancla “I would like to suggest to the department of agriculture as a whole, to encourage my generation and the younger ones to engage in agriculture, use the governments resources to promote this lifestyle. go to colleges , or promote it in various ways, im sure there are a lot of people like you who can do the ads and promotion very well. instead of rotc, agriculture immersion should be a good alternative than marching under the sun. hehe. i suggest a slogan for the promotion, "get dirty , get rich". Again thank you so much, i was not expecting a quick reply . Good luck, and please continue doing your job coz i believe you are doing it very well.” God bless and mabuhay po kayo!!35