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SM Foundation Inc. (SMFI) has recently launched a farmer training program called the Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan on Sustainable Agriculture Program (KSK-SAP) for some 50 farmer beneficiaries at Barangay Taloy Sur in Tuba, Benguet last October 30, 2020.
SMFI has partnered with Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Information Agency (PIA), St. Isidore “The Farmer” Learning Center, Inc., Macondray Philippines, Lili of the Valley Organic Farm, SM Markets, and SM Supermalls with the provincial government of Benguet and the municipal government of Tuba to fully assist the farmers in their training program.
The KSK-SAP is a six-week course that teaches the beneficiaries how to maximize and properly do backyard planting and small-scale farming techniques for fruits and vegetables. This will help improve and increase the harvests of the farmers. This is also a way to provide organic food for their own families.
This program aims to assist and encourage the farmers to become entrepreneurs in their industry as well. SMFI will also support farmers that will create a group of cooperatives by linking them to local markets and SM suppliers for additional income.
TESDA will give the farmers scholarships in Organic Agriculture Production NCII as well.
During the KSK-SAP launch SMFI AVP for Outreach Programs Cristie Angeles, DA Sec. William Dar, DSWD Sec. Rolando Bautista, TESDA Sec. Isidro Lapena, and other partners have shared their messages of support to the farmers through video presentations.
The farmers’ training program is part of the SMFI that focuses on social inclusion by nurturing and caring for those in need. The foundation serves as the core belief of SM Group of Companies’ corporate social responsibility, established by Henry Sy Sr. and Felicidad T. Sy, while anchoring on the principle “People Helping People”.
SMFI in partnership with government and private service sectors have provided training to more than 25,000 farmers since 2007. 77 farmers from Taloy Sur, Tuba, Benguet have previously completed and graduated from the same SMFI farmers training program last 2019. By Jessica Joy Fernando