From left to right: Mr. Garry Hidalgo (Urban Agriculture Expert), Noel Villodres (Horticulturist), Mr. Ranell Dedicatoria, Program Manager, ICLEI, Dr. Rico Ancog (Project Leader), Ms. Linda Creencia (City ENRO) and Dra. Sonia Algabre (city councilor) during the ribbon cutting ceremony and unveiling of the urban agriculture demo park.
The pioneering project Building Capacity for Urban Agriculture in the City of Santa Rosa, Philippines, funded through the ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability South East Asia, Inc.-ACCCRN (ASEAN Cities Climate Change Resilience Network) Engagement Building Small Grants program was implemented by the School of Environmental Science and Management-University of the Philippines Los Baños together with the City Government of Santa Rosa. This initiative identifies strategies on how to integrate urban agriculture in local planning. One of the major outputs is to raise awareness on urban agriculture through a capacity building training targeting various stakeholders from both private and public sector groups.
A whole day capacity building training was held last October 13 at the Santa Rosa City. Representatives from the City Agriculture Office, City Planning and Development Office, City Engineering Office, City Assessor’s Office, City Cooperative and Development Office, Sangguniang Panlungsod, Philippine National Police and barangays Dita, Balibago and Aplaya attended. Representatives from Toyota Autoparts also attended the training.
Councilor Roy Gonzales of Santa Rosa City identified some of the projects of Santa Rosa that are geared towards environment protection, one of their priority projects included urban agriculture. Ranell Dedicatoria, program manager of ICLEI-South East Asia, also shared a welcome message to the participants. Meanwhile, Dr. Rico Ancog, project leader and faculty at the SESAM-UPLB, presented the project overview and a review of the project activities including the completion of the pilot site construction at Barangay Sinalhan, Santa Rosa City.
The Urban Agriculture demo park in Barangay SInalhan, Santa Rosa City, Laguna features different tyoes of containerized farming.
The training consisted of two sessions. The morning session involved lectures covering topics on sustainability of the production system and urban agriculture as a strategy for climate change adaptation. The afternoon session of the training included the ribbon cutting ceremony and unveiling of the urban agriculture demo park in Barangay Sinalhan followed by the on-site training. Project consultants Noel Villodres (Horticulturist), Garry Hidalgo (Urban Agriculture Expert) and Architect Therese Santiano (Urban Planner) served as lecturers and facilitators.
The training was coordinated and organized by the urban agriculture project staff Ayesha Sarapuddin and Clarissa Ruzol, with the support from the City Environment and Natural Resource Office of Santa Rosa City headed by Ms. Linda Creencia. (Ayesha Sarapuddin)