One hundred Ilongot farmers and their families in Barangay Bayanihan, Ma. Aurora, received banana and citrus seedlings along with farm tools on November 24, a month ahead of the holiday season.
The donation was initiated by Her Excellency Esra Cankorur, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Turkey to the Republic of the Philippines, as part of the “TIKAbuhayan” program of the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA). The project aims to support the Ilongot farmers affected by last year’s Typhoon Lando and the recent Typhoon Lawin.
With the coordination of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Region 3 and the Municipality of Maria Aurora, Ilongot farmers were provided with banana suckers, citrus seedlings, and farm implements such as knapsacks, shovels and bolos. An orientation was also conducted for the beneficiaries to learn more on the different planting techniques and new developments in banana and citrus farming.
Ronie Caanawan, DMO V, Acting Chief of the Finance and Administrative Division of NCIP Region 3, said that the project would be a significant contribution to the Ilongot tribal families, as most of them earn a living by farming in their ancestral domain.
Ambassador Cankorur expressed her hope that TIKA development cooperation projects will strengthen the friendship between Turkish and Filipino peoples. The Ilongots in their tribal garb presented a celebratory dance for the event to express their gratitude.
Prior to the said activity, TIKA also donated corn seeds and fertilizers to 70 farmers whom were highly affected by Typhoon Lawin in the Municipality of Casiguran, Aurora. These donations are a series of livelihood assistance projects conducted through “TIKAbuhayan” program in support of the underprivileged and vulnerable communities.