Smarter Agriculture for Smarter Indigenous Farmers: Project SARAi and DA-4K Program holds Training for Indigenous Peoples from Across the Philippines

Project SARAi, in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture – Kabuhayan at Kaunlaran ng Kababayang Katutubo (4K Program), conducted a training on Smart Farming: Technologies and Benefits for Agriculture in Ancestral Domains from 22-24 November 2023 at Eurotel, North EDSA. 

The 3-day training event aimed to introduce and capacitate the participants on selected SARAi systems and technologies. The activity was participated in by 42 representatives of indigenous groups from different regions of the country. ILANG regional offices of the Department of Agriculture – 4K Program representatives were also present. The training commenced with a welcome message from Director Lucia A. Campomanes, Program Director of DA-4K. In her talk, she emphasized the essential role of Project SARAi in facilitating technological advancements of agriculture in the country, and the essential role of the youth of indigenous peoples in improving agriculture in their respective ancestral domains. 

The training was packed with a series of lectures and demonstrations led by Dr. Decibel V. Faustino-Eslava, lead for the SARAi Integration Project; and SARAi Experts, Asst. Prof. Aldrin J. Hao, Mr. Gideon Aries Burgonio, Asst. Prof. Dara Fabro-Realin, and Dr. Calixto M. Protacio.

Representatives from different indigenous communities conveyed gratitude for the inclusive training that advances modern technology in the agricultural sector, essential to scale up the capacities of our indigenous communities in the country.ย ย Notably, a representative underscored the pivotal role played by the collaborative initiatives of Project SARAi and the DA-4K program in positively shaping the livelihoods and future prospects of the indigenous population.ย Participants also mentioned the importance of echoing what they learned from the training to their own communities.ย 

Director Lucia extended her appreciation to Project SARAi and highlighted that the training is only the first of many more to come. She looks forward to more activities in the future designed to capacitate indigenous communities for pushing agricultural development (KCTenio, MEMAmante, MRVRegalado, RMAreglado).

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