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PIA Press Release
2010/09/23

Heifer International creates more self reliant communities

by Juliet B. Saley

Bontoc, Mt. Province (23 September) -- With its unique'Passing on the Gifts' approach, Heifer International(HPI) continues to be successfully implemented in the province creating more self-reliant communities.

Heifer International is a non-profit charitable organization dedicated to relieving global hunger and poverty. It provides gifts of livestock and plants as well as education in sustainable agriculture to financially-disadvantaged families around the world.

With the Passing on the gifts scheme, original placement family receive the animal gifts and other inputs and once the animals bear offsprings and other inputs become productive, original family passes on the same animal gifts and other inputs it received to a pass-on family.

According to Jun Dom-oguen, Program Officer for HPI-Northern Philippines Program, HPI started helping poor families in the province in 2001. It was first implemented in barangays Aguid, Pide and Fedilisan, all of Sagada through its partner PAFMPCI. There were 24 carabaos given to the identified families of these barangays.

Over the years, HPI implemented more projects in the province and formed partnership with six non-government organizations. These are the Episcopal Diocese of Northern Philippines (EDNP) for the projects Peasants Extending Assistance to Support one Another's Noteworthy Thrusts for Self-reliance (PEASANTS) in barangays Masla and Batayan in Tadian and Unique Gift-giving for the Upliftment of Generous Families to attain Harmony and Unity among tribes (UGUGFU) in barangay Tocucan of Bontoc.

The Sumya-an Women's Association Inc. on the Sharing Agri-livestock Resources and Enterprise Development (SHARED) project in barangays Patay, Dagdag, Demang, Ambasing and Balugan, all of Sagada; the Social Action Development Center (SADC) for Community Assistance towards Renewed Economy-life of Indigenous Families and Ecosystem (CARE LIFE) project in barangays Bayyo and Talubin and the VCD CARES in barangays Mainit and Guina-ang, all of Bontoc.

It also partnered with the Cordillera Parents Federation Inc. (CPFI) for Happier Families project in barangay Otucan of Bauko; the Igorota Foundation Inc. (IFI) for the Women initiated Sustainable entrepreneurship through Gifts, Integrity, Values and Environmental Restoration (WISE GIVER) project in barangays Gayang and Camatagan of Sabangan; and the Jaime V. Ongpin Foundation Inc. (JVOFI) for CHATON project in barangay Kayan in Tadian.

Under this program, there are 300 original families and 263 pass on families who received animals, chickens, assorted vegetable seeds and fruit seedlings and other inputs.

Original placement of gifts to beneficiaries in barangays Kayan, Balugan, Mainit and Guina-ang is scheduled next month. 50 original families in barangay Balugan will be given 50 ready to breed pigs, 150 chickens and assorted vegetable seeds and fruit seedlings.

Barangay Kayan will be given 100 ready to breed pigs, 220 chickens, two biogas digester and assorted vegetable seeds and fruit seedlings for the identified 100 families. Barangays Mainit and Guina-ang will be given 160 ready to breed pigs, 240 chickens and assorted vegetable seeds and fruit seedlings for the 80 identified families.

Passing on the Gifts is the trademark of Heifer which is the acronym for the cornerstones or values and principles it applies and promotes in all its projects and activities. Passing on the Gifts stands for P - passing on the gift, A - accountability, S - sharing and caring, S - sustainability and self-reliance, I - improved animal management, N - nutrition and income, G - gender and family on the G - genuine need and justice, I - improving the environment, F - full participation, T - training and education, and S - spirituality.

With Passing on the gifts, families become donors and equal partners in poverty alleviation and the spirit of goodwill spreads to create more and more self-reliant communities. (PIA-MP) [top]

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