An adage says, success comes by choice not by chance
Established in 2013, the 220 partner-beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya Pilipino Program of Gigaquit Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) Federation agreed to fuse their Self-Employment Assistance Kaunlaran SEA-K funds to ensure economic sustainability.
“Dako among pagtuo nga ang pag-ipon sa among SEA-K ug pagtinabangay sa matag-usa maoy susi sa paglambo sa among mga plano (We strongly believe that merging our SEA-K funds and helping each other will be the key in the success of our plans),” says Juliet Mara, the federation’s president.
Watermelon Production, Grocery Store, and a Meat Processing Center have been the fruits of the group’s initiative and efforts.
More business ventures
However, it does not end there.
Instead of dividing the earned profit at the end of the year, the group agreed to venture into another businesses.
“Gusto namu dugangan aron daghan pa matabangan ug madungangan amo source sa income (We want to venture into more businesses to help more people in the community and add our source of income),” Juliet explains.
The group has embarked on more agri-business such as production of bangus, vegetable, Monggo, crabs, broiler, and putting up another grocery store. They ensure that these projects are resource-based and market-oriented.
With the implementation of SLP Caraga’s strategies such as the access on internal markets, the federation was able to interlink the projects to ensure that there will be market for their products.
Further, the ownership of the project is strongly present during the implementation; thus, even the small farmers and fisher folks directly implement the project. This is en route to increasing their capacities and improving their status of living through the social and economic benefits out of the project.
Apart from the increasing number of enterprises, the group agreed to provide scholarship grants to eight (8) children of Pantawid Pamilya grantees.
The federation prioritizes children of Pantawid Pamilya grantees with good school performance.
The scholarship offers free tuition fee of these college students.
In return, the scholars should ensure passing and good grades.
One of the fortunate scholars is Jovy Mar B. Guergio, 19, a resident of Brgy. Lahi, Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte.
Due to insufficient funds, his parents cannot afford to send him to college.
His mother is a housewife and has been taking care of his younger siblings. On the other hand, his father has stopped working due to sickness.
While on the verge of giving up, the federation has brought light and hope to Jovy’s life.
“Gusto na unta ko moapil sa New People’s Army (NPA) kung di ko maka eskwela sa college apan tungod sa tabang sa Gigaquit Federation natagaan kog paglaum (I was planning to join the NPA if I fail to go to college, however, Gigaquit Federation’s assistance has given me hope),” says Jovy.
He is now on his 2nd year in Surigao State College of Technology taking up Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education
“Mahimong tinuod akong mga damgo tungod sa scholarship ug dako ako pasalamat tungod ani (My dreams will turn into reality because of the scholarship and with that I am grateful),” he adds.
Jovy has been a dreamer and an achiever since the day he realized how hard their life is.
He sees education as the most important thing to be successful and the key to one’s achievement in their dreams.
“We can change not only ourselves, but also the whole world if we can beat poverty. Dream big and believe in your own self, and it’s up to us on how to develop it. After all, success will come on your way,” Jovy concludes.
Success made known
The federation is highly recognized by the Municipal Local Government Unit as one of the organized and empowered recipients of government intervention.
They were also visited by the Pantawid Pamilya National Advisory Committee, became the SLP Regional Model Group Enterprise for Replication and visited by the SLP National Program Monitoring Office.
Amidst the various recognitions, the federation claims that their greatest achievements are their eight (8) scholars and the marginalized group whom they provided with emergency and death assistance.
For them, success is not only counted in the monetary but on the numbers of lives they have touched. ###(MARY CARMELLE C. JUMAWAN/SLP/Social Marketing Unit/DSWD Field Office Caraga)