Sibol ng Agham at Teknolohiya (SIBAT), Inc.

Since our establishment in 1984, SIBAT envisions a just and sovereign society that upholds genuine development through people-based science & technology. SIBAT commits to develop, promote and popularize the application of appropriate technologies towards attaining village-level sustainable development in poor communities. As such, SIBAT have gained significant breakthroughs in sustainable agriculture, renewable energy, genetic conservation and water systems development. By the end of 2022, SIBAT's goals are: 1. Self-reliant and resilient communities that have adopted appropriate technologies and can adapt to the effects of climate change. 2. Institutionalized structures and mecha...
Feb 23, 2015

Hit Thrice And Bouncing Back Despite

A farmer shows off his plotted vegetable garden
A farmer shows off his plotted vegetable garden

The first was typhoon Haiyan in 2013, and just as we celebrated its first anniversary in November 8, 2014 wishing for this never to happen again, two successive typhoons hit Samar and Leyte in Central Philippines once more. Typhoon Ruby came first and unleashed its fury just before Christmas and typhoon Senyang just before we ushered the new year 2015 late in December. These two typhoons came just days apart on the same month.

While typhoon Haiyan packed up winds speeding over 300 kph and brought storm surges causing swirling sea water to rise up to 8 meters and smashed land pulverizing everything on its path, Ruby and Senyang though slightly slower than Haiyan carried more rain causing massive floods and fatal landslides. All communities in Tolosa involved in the SIBAT-Global Giving food, water and energy projects were submerged in water. The steadily progressing food production and water rehabilitation work that gained ground would have to go back to square one again. This at least in terms of reconstructing demonstration farms, acquiring new seedlings to plant anew, soil re-fertilization after newly recovered healthy top soil were again washed out by the floods. Water wells would have to be assessed again that might need redrawing and reconfiguration of the distribution system.

We were quite happy then that the typhoon months usually from June-September didn't have any serious storms and thought this year would pass with a gentle breeze and typhoon-path areas can take a breather. But climate change that kept on distorting the weather patterns across the globe can really spring unwelcome surprises. Before the year ended, two successive typhoons bid 2014 goodbye with a swath of devastation brought about by floods and landslides killing some people. It did happen just when Haiyan victims have learned the rudiments of non-chemical food production technologies and have started creating their own food and conquered queuing for food relief.

Most households are already benefiting from the food they produced from leafy, fruit-bearing, climbing and root crop vegetables beginning midyear in 2014.  Rice growing has never been productive with the introduction of the System of Rice Intensification (SRI). Bio-intensive gardening has been continually introduced and adoptive by households. Communal farming has become alive creating not only food for every home but fostered as well camaraderie, cooperation and unity among community members. It renewed back a sense of ready helping hands available in times of calamities and related disasters. With the damage wrought by the two typhoons...the communities would have to pick up the pieces again and redo much of what they have already started and move again forward.

From building their capacities on food production technologies, the communities have formalized their participation in rehabilitation work and solidified this cooperation through creation of vegetable growing associations.

To date, the following organization in the affected areas have been formed, namely:

(1) The Vegetables Growing Association in Brgy. San Roque Tolosa with 43 active members;

(2) The Quilao Organic Farmers Association (QOFA) in Brgy. Quilao, Tolosa with 20 active membesrs;

(3) The Magsasakang Gulayan ng Brgy. Cantawiris (MGBC) with 23 active members and the

(4) Tolosa Organic Farming Association (TOFA) with 25 active members

Organizing work is being continued for other communities to formalize themselves to continue rehabilitating their food bases and prepare for the next eventuality.

There will be additional trainings on various Sustainable Farming Technologies that will be conducted. With typhoons Senyang and Ruby damaging the earlier production farms and gardens established we need to distribute seeds again for leafy, root crops and cereals like rice and corn as staple crops.

It's worth noting that some of these organizations are moving on towards social enterprises such as processing some of their produce like bananas into chips and community-based production of organic fertilizers to serve the needs of other farmers.

The two recent typhoons may have se them back momentarily, but we are aiming to design a more climate resilient production processes by integrating buffer zones through planting of additional trees in flood pathways, develop off farm seed storage for back up and continue disaster preparedness activities and incorporate these into the daily production work.

farmers harvesting their vegetables
farmers harvesting their vegetables
planting rice through organic farming technologies
planting rice through organic farming technologies
Vegetable garden after typhoon Senyang and Ruby
Vegetable garden after typhoon Senyang and Ruby
Demo farm damaged by typhoon Senyang and Ruby
Demo farm damaged by typhoon Senyang and Ruby
Nov 18, 2014

Self-produced Food After Relief Has Gone

It's been a couple of months back this 2014  when SIBAT started to prepare the affected communities for post food relief situation by training members of the 15 barangays of Tolosa Leyte to produce their own food and sustain their potable water systems through renewable Energy.    The 15 focus barangays are Burak, Capangihan, San Vicente, Malbog, Cantawiris, Olot, Burak, Quilao, Tanghas, Telegrafo, Opong, Canmogsay, Olot,San Roque and Poblacion proper. 

From June to September, intensive trainings were conducted for production of two main crops, namely, rice growing and diversified vegetable production.  A total of 198 trainees took the trainings, 92 are regular farmers and 86 are secondary cultivators being barangay officials, health workers, nutritionists and  teachers.  The latter group were tasked to integrate the sustanable food production know how into their respective constitutencies as part of continuing restoration work in agriculture and food sufficiency while rebuilding work progresses. These are done through establishment of a common production-demonstration farm collectively managed by the comnunity members and through individual farmer cooperators adopting the production technologies as models in their respective farms.   

The Integrated SustainableRice Production (ISORP) were introduced to revive back rice farming for the 11 rice growing barangays under a non-chemical farming system.   To date 44 farmers from these barangays adopted ISORP that features organic fertilization of the soil, use of improved rice varieties instead of hybrids, intermittent irrigtion and straight line method of planting to optimize sunlight. 

 Vegetable Food Production were pursued and formalized by two barangays through formation of vegetable growers association, a first in the history of the farming community.  These are the Vegetable Growers Association (VGA)of Brgy. San Roque with 43 members and the Quilao Organic Farmers Association in Brgy. Quilao  (QOFA) with 17 members. For the 12 barangays, tools were distibuted with a set each or rotary weeders, rice harrowers ad rice hull carbonizers. 

With the efforts, the families were able to provide and have access to vegetable food supplements, revival of soil health and seed improvement.  Potable water through photo voltaic or gravity-applied distribution system is still a work in progress with the limited resource for full rehabilitation work. 

Monitoring, technical advisories in continually building the community through their farmers association is a regular task undertaken to sustain and improve initial efforts  


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Nov 18, 2014

Completion of the Madukayan Tribe Microhydro Power

This serves as final report of the completion of the Madukayan Tribe Microhydro Power in Natonin Mt. Province Northern Luzon Philppines. Last January 14, 2014 the  testing and subsequent comissioning  of the Madukayan Tribe Microhydro Power was finally conducted. This constitutes  the completion of the MHP project with an output capacity of 20 kilowatts.    

Earlier, a series of challenges that also impeded the speedy completion of the project were hurdled by community members such as civil works on the canals and forebay damaged by landslides caused by two strong typhoons hitting the site. The electro mechanical systems have to be cleaned up when silts passed through the penstocks from the damaged canals with some pebbles lodged in the turbine casing.  Opening the heavily corroded turbine casing probed difficult with one technical staff getting an accident as a splinter screw flew off and hit his right eye requiring immediate surgery.  Luckily, the procedure healed the affected eye and the tecnical staff goes back to normal work routine.

Also, the inclement weather with strong winds and extended heavy rains in the wet season of 2013 derailed hauling of construction materials such as cement and gravel from supply centers due to wet and muddy road terrains.  The farming community also caught up rice production work during those rainy months to offset losses incurred from previous year's low yield drought affected production. Hence, work on the MHP took a back seat in the 3rd quarter of 2013 and resumed full speed in the last quarter before its full completion in early January of 2014.

Transmission lines and subscription to individual houses are deferred tentatively awaiting further fund support currently being sourced out.  The MHP project got allocations only for power house construction.

Nevertheless, the system is currently powering a half a kilometer street lighthing on main thoroughfares of the barangay.  Power use isconcentrated also on a local rice mill cooperatively ran by the local community with current management temporarily handled by  the local Episcopalian Church..a communty partner of the project. 

SIBAT, the local community and the Episcopalian church are gearing up for collaborative action which would outline activities for the developement of the MHP system and its application.  This includes training of operators that would operate and maintain the MHP and the rice mill operations, development of policies for utilization including tariff collections. Side by side will be skills enhancement on project management, value formation and leadership trainings.  Agri-based livelihood applications of power is being explored such as cane pressers for sugar and fabrication of farms tools and implements.   Building the Peoples Organization is an on-going effort through  community organizing spearheaded by the local church partner noting that a united community is key to the sustainability of the project.

Currently, both the lighting and milling components  though limited applications are sufficiently benefitting the community as regards security at night and most importantly addressing a post-harvest need.

In behalf of the tribal people of Madukayan, we wish to thank all of you who have contributed to the completion of the project through Global Giving.  May you continue to be endowed as you sustain your generousity to help those who are in need particularly  energy projects such as these for remote off grid communties.  

Thank you very much!


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