women farmers of COFPC during post-harvest of veg
Gains from Sustainable Agriculture Trainings
Measures of true success in trainings are the benefits they reap through its application and the knowledge they build from their experience.
As the Sustainable Agriculture Training Center (SATC) continuous to improve its services and facilities through your help, we would like to share with you the gains that we are now reaping.
A case in point is the Capas Organic Farmers and Producers Cooperative (COFPC). COFPC was given birth by a group of farmers who have trained and practiced Sustainable Agriculture practices in organic vegetable production way back 2008. They were just 5 in the group who became models to other farmers. As the years past they increased in numbers and now became a 21 member cooperative.
They use their knowledge from the trainings they got from SATC and innovate in their farms. Production for their household consumption increased for them to have surpluses. In 2009, they started a marketing scheme with SIBAT’s social enterprise – Sibol People’s Store and a private company Good Food Co.
In 2010, they have applied under the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), and continue to strengthen their group with Sustainable Agriculture Organic Vegetable production as their core.
“Today, we are reaping the fruit of our trainings on sustainable agriculture. The benefits we are having are not just the additional food that we now have in our tables; it’s not just the money we get from selling our surpluses but the safe and healthy food that we consume and the fair price we get for our produce.” --- Marie Cajuguiran, COFPC treasurer, farmer
“The benefits we gain from the application of our trainings go beyond the basics. It has taught us camaraderie with our fellow farmers and neighbours, it has taught us how to be followers and leaders.” --- Susan Cajuguiran, COFPC Secretary, farmer
“Benefits? Aside from becoming my main source of income, it has helped me improve my health. Learning organic vegetable production made me eat healthy food and provided me with enough exercise in the garden.” --- Bella Salak, COFPC member, Senior Citizen, farmer
COFPC now has its niche, and is recognized in the province of Tarlac. But they believe that learning needs to be continuous to be able to follow the changes that they are facing and be a model to other farmers.
”We have become models to other farmers not just here in Capas, Tarlac but in the greatest part of the country! We are in magazines and television! We have become torch bearers and advocates of organic farming to other farmers. We have shown there is development through the application of our learnings. We have become teachers to our fellow farmers.” --- Carlito Pabustan, COFPC vice-president, Councilor
COFPC is just one case, a small number of people in the list of trainees that SATC have catered but it mirrors the gains that we are now enjoying.
We are just a grain of salt, but as little as we are, the littlest contribution that we share can magnify gains like this as long as we share and we help.