Sep 18, 2020

Pursuing Development Initiatives During Pandemic

      DLSU’s Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA) through its Partnership Network and Development Program unit facilitated an online survey among stakeholders of its partner communities to assess the situation during this pandemic.  The survey which was conducted from June 13-29, 2020 also gathered recommendations on relevant initiatives to undertake with the communities.  Mr. Roel Quenamot, COSCA’s Partnership and Network  Development Specialist facilitated the  participation of various stakeholders (from the Local Government Unit of Lian, Batangas, Lumaniag Elementary School, local fishers in the coastal communities of Talim bay and their household members) of the Talim bay partnership initiative. 

      Survey results showed that the pandemic has had the most impact to the income and livelihood and with food and livelihood identified as the topmost need of communities. The fishing restrictions and tourism ban have disrupted the livelihood of the local fishers and their families. Those working as resort caretakers shared that they lost their jobs because of the beach closure. They noted also on the declining prices of their fish catch resulting from the closure of the market and commercial establishments in Lian, Batangas. Respondents from the local government unit consider the COVID-19 situation to be their most pressing concern while elementary school teachers believe that health-related needs should be the priority.

      DLSU-COSCA and its partner organizations continue to look for alternative source/s of income to support our local fishers.  The procurement of necessary materials needed for the implementation of  the supplemental livelihood  (crab fattening and  sea cucumber ranching ) supported by  GlobalGiving,  Feed the Hungry, Inc and  the LGU of the Municipality of Lian, Batangas is still being facilitated.  Mangrove planting is also being promoted in the university to assist communities generate additional income.

      Resource mobilization is continuously being pursued by COSCA to assist vulnerable sectors like our fishers in Talim bay, facilitating the second batch of food assistance to some 228  members of  our four partner people’s organizations in Lian, Batangas such as the Lian Fisherfolk  Association, Inc.,  Samahan ng mga Mandaragat sa Sulok, Samahan ng Maliliit na Mangingisda ng Binubusan and others.

      Another condition that worries the fishers is the coral bleaching noted in the marine ecosystem of Lian, Batangas.  This poses concern as marine scientists and the LGU-MENRO has advised local fishers to lessen their interaction in the area, reduce the adverse effect to  the coral reef and allow the corals to gradually recover.

Sep 15, 2020

Engaging Potential Entrepreneurs through Online Boot Camp

          De La Salle University’s Center for Social Concern and Action (DLSU-COSCA) engages another batch of community members for the Lasallian Social Enterprise for Economic Development’s  (LSEED) Social Enterprise Fellowship Program (SEFP).  The program aims to help enable partner communities and students create social enterprises that are relevant, sustainable and impact driven. This initiative is also part of DLSU’s effort to expand the implementation of LSEED.

       Community members from partner communities of DLSU-Laguna campus and student fellows participated in a series of Online Learning and Mentoring Session held from May to June 2020.   The series of workshop introduced community members and student fellows the concept of “social entrepreneurship (SE) and its characteristics, social innovations, circular economy, and design thinking. 

      Successful SEFP graduates (7 student fellows and 8 community members) were recommended to participate in the Online LSEED Boot Camp for DLSU-Laguna Campus. The Online Boot Camp held last July 18 to 20, 2020 was participated by student fellows composed of Lingap scholars from DLSU-Laguna campus’ partner communities and community members from the Gawad Kalinga-Toyota Village.  The session was facilitated by Mr. Norby Salonga, with support from his Lasallian Mission Office’s co-facilitators/mentors, Mr. Melchor Oribe and Ms. Evelyn Laranga.

        As the COVID-19 pandemic renders everybody’s movement limited (with most areas in the country under enhanced community quarantine) the situation placed most, if not all members of our partner communities in a difficult economic situation, LSEED continues to support a number of initiatives to respond to needs of partner communities such as extending relief assistance and organizing learning and mentoring sessions  using available online platforms.

Sep 3, 2020

Pursuing Environmental Rehabilitation Amidst the COVID 19 Pandemic

        Facilitating community engagement activities such as visiting the coastal communities  in Lian, Batangas, one of the project areas of the Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA) of the De La Salle University (DLSU)-Manila deepens community  involvement  of  members of the academic community.

      The challenge of COVID 19 pandemic and all related quarantine  measures and required health protocols only helped strengthen collaboration among communities, the private  sector and government institutions.  DLSU-COSCA facilitated activities such as the provision of food packs to assist vulnerable sectors like our local fishers in Lian, Batangas affected by the pandemic. 

       Amid the contagion, COSCA continue to pursue mangrove reforestation and rehabilitation activities through strengthened partnerships-providing opportunities to members of the academic community and or its stakeholders to contribute to environmental conservation and protection initiatives, in line with the framework of faith in action.

      Mangrove seedlings of Avicennia sp. (900 propagules) were successfully planted in a newly identified planting site in Sitio KayReyna, Lumaniag, Lian, Batangas.  The mangrove tree planting activity was made possible through the collaboration of  Santugon sa Tawag ng Panahon and Civil Engineering Society (CES) (DLSU-based student organizations), Lian Fisherfolk Association, Inc. (LFA) and DLSU-COSCA. COSCA coordinated with LGU Lian, LFA and the student organizations (Santugon and CES) the mangrove planting while the latter provided the logistical requirement and bought  the mangrove seedlings from the nursery of the local fishers.   The actual planting activity was facilitated by 15 members of LFA.

     The COVID-19 pandemic continues to remind  us the importance of empowering our communities and ensuring sustainability of  initiatives - community partners leading grassroots activities.  Members of our partner community organizations will regularly inspect the planted seedlings in keeping with the project’s goal to help communities conserve and protect the environment.

 

 

The following personnel made this activity possible: Mr. Leo Tadena (LSDP Coordinator), Ms. Annadel Sapugay (ENVISAGE Development Specialist), Mr. Noel Quenamot (Community Partnership Specialist) and Mr. Ariel Casihan (President, LFA).

 
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