Zambales IP group benefits from livelihood aid

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – An indigenous peoples (IP) association in Zambales recently benefitted from the livelihood grant of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Central Luzon.

The Pinatubo Assistance for Poor Aeta Human Tribes, Inc. (PAPAHT) based in Botolan town received livelihood assistance amounting to PhP250,000 which will be used for its plant nursery project and would benefit 108 members.

“Through this aid, we aim to help PAPAHT member-beneficiaries which are mostly farmers, to have a sustainable source of income by helping them have a nursery where they can grow their own mango, cashew and guyabano seedlings and sell them to their market,” DOLE Regional Director Ana Dione said.

She added that these seedlings would also be utilized for their Community-Based Forest Management to further cultivate their ancestral domain, which they call “Baytan.”

Said aid includes various materials to be used for the nursery including bamboo, fish net, plastic drum, hose, shovels, nails, water pump, and amazon wire.

For its counterpart, PAPAHT will also be utilizing PhP62,500 from its existing funds to finance the total cost of the project.

In addition, the group already sought the technical expertise of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and Department of Agriculture to manage and sustain the project while the town’s Public Employment Service Office will help them in promoting and marketing their produce.

Speaking in behalf of his fellow beneficiaries, PAPAHT President Ernesto Juliano Sr. expressed his gratitude to DOLE for the livelihood opportunity, which will benefit the whole community.

“We are very grateful that DOLE has reached out to help indigenous peoples like us. This will greatly benefit our families. May you continuously reach out and help more people from our sector so that like us, they too, will be given the opportunity to uplift their lives. Rest assured that we will enrich whatever you have entrusted us,” Juliano expressed. (PIA 3)

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