Communal gardens sprout up months after #OdettePH
Riza, 35, shows the vegetable seedlings that she and members of their group propagate in their nursery in Barangay Mahayahay, San Jose, Dinagat Island Province. Meanwhile, her 73-year-old mother, Matilde waters the plants in their communal garden where okra, string beans, peppers, squash, sweet potato, water spinach, and other vegetables are growing.
“We already harvested three times since we started the garden. It really helps especially at times when we don’t have enough money to buy food”, Riza shared.
She also said that they are growing their food using organic compost and fertilizers such as fermented fruit and plant juice which materials are sourced in their community.
Their members were trained in sustainable organic farming after Typhoon Rai (Odette) ruined their crops and stripped the garden soil barren.
Through the Immediate and Comprehensive Response for Communities Affected by Typhoon Rai (Odette), men and women members of their communities were organized and formed into mutual groups for reviving the former and engaging in alternative livelihoods.
Aside from their association’s dry goods stores, they decided to put up communal nurseries and gardens to ensure that food will always be on their table.
“After the typhoon, it was very difficult to find food. Now, when we harvest beans, we can store them both for seeds and food”, she added.
The Immediate and Comprehensive Response for Communities Affected by Typhoon Rai (Odette) is implemented jointly by CARE Philippines, ACCORD Incorporated, Action Against Hunger Philippines, National Rural Women Coalition (PKKK) and Plan International Philippines in Dinagat Islands, Palawan, Southern Leyte, Bohol, Negros Occidental, and Cebu, Philippines.