Lipa women set up sustainable vegetable, livestock gardens to cope with pandemic

Lipa women sustainable vegetable livestock
Women of Brgy. San Benito in Lipa City, Batangas happily show their growing ‘greens’, Photo from East West Seed.

The women of Lipa in Batangas are growing sustainable vegetable and livestock gardens to meet local communities’ food source needs amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The “Stables and Green” project established 7 gardens in selected barangays in Lipa City, Batangas. These 200 square-meter gardens can produce vegetables, meat, and eggs for the community beneficiaries.

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East-West Seed, the Philippine company founded by World Food Prize-winning Laureate Simon Groot and Filipino Benito Domingo, trained selected community members on how to successfully grow vegetables and will also hone their entrepreneurial skills by helping them establish an ideal small-scale vegetable enterprise.

Agriculture Training Institute-International Training Center on Pig Husbandry (ATI-ITCPH) also provided training on raising free-range chickens among the community members.

The sustainable food source program, also known as the “Stables and Greens: Agri-Livestock Integrated Support to COVID-19- Prone Areas (ALIS-COVID)” that was launched in May 2020, supports the ‘Plant, Plant, Plant’ program of the Department of Agriculture, East-West Seed, Agriculture Training Institute-International Training Center on Pig Husbandry, and the Local Government of Lipa City.

“We believe that establishing community gardens can empower communities, especially during this difficult time. Through these gardens, they can become more self-sufficient, have access to nutritious food, and even earn additional income for their families,” said Henk Hermans, General Manager of East-West Seed Philippines that introduced the first locally developed commercial vegetable hybrids in tropical Asia. These varieties were fast-growing, high-yielding and resistant to local diseases and stresses.

The community beneficiaries in Lipa, Batangas are Barangay San Benito, Barangay Pinagtong-olan, Barangay Marawoy, Barangay Lodlod, Missionary Sisters of the Incarnation at Barangay Tambo, and SOS Children’s Village at Barangay Banaybanay.

“The Stables and Greens gardens helped our barangay a lot, especially the 4Ps families who are in charge of maintaining the gardens. They learned how to plant, the right way of growing vegetables, and now they are harvesting the fruits of their labor. They get their food from the gardens and also sell them to other nearby barangays so they can earn extra income. The project also helped in developing a harmonious relationship among the 4Ps families,” said Hon. Quintin Piol, Barangay Captain of San Benito, Lipa City.

The project will run until 2022 and, in the long-term, envisions to develop a sustainable local food system in the communities with the increased households’ participation in agri-livestock production.

SEND CHEERS in the comments below to the women of Lipa, Batangas for their sustainable vegetable, livestock gardens that help their communities cope with the COVID 19 pandemic.

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