Fishing for New Opportunities
Based on the report released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the unemployment rate in July 2020 was estimated at 10 percent which is higher than the unemployment rate of the same month a year ago at 5.4 percent. One of the sectors which has a significant drop in employment due to the pandemic is fishing or aquaculture.
Since Barangay Somal-ot in Casiguran, Sorsogon is a coastal community, 120 out of 375 households or 32% of the total households in the barangay consider fishing as their main source of livelihood. Because of the pandemic, most of these households were immensely affected.
Prior to the lockdown, the fisherfolks usually earn Php 250.00 to Php 350.00 per sailing. To date, they only earn Php 150.00 to Php 180.00.
According to Barangay Councilor Rodel Cruz, these fisherfolks are with broken fishing tools and equipment.
“Dahil walang sapat na kita ay wala silang pampaayos ng kanilang mga gamit pandagat,” Councilor Rodel explained.
(Since fisherfolks don’t have enough income at this time, they don’t have the money to have their fishing paraphernalia repaired.)
In support for the livelihood of fisherfolks, the community members proposed the provision of fishing paraphernalia as a sub-project funded by the Department of Social Welfare and Development Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS).
Before submitting the proposal, the community encountered problems and undergone different processes to ensure that the needs of the community will be provided.
“Ang pagkakaisa, pagtutulungan at pagtitiyaga ang ilan sa mga kalakasan para makagawa ng magandang proposal,” Councilor Rodel added.
(Unity, helping each other and perseverance are some of the strengths in crafting a good proposal.)
Aside from the project, the community gained changes such as the active participation of community volunteers.
“Ang mga simpleng mamamayan ay binigyan ng boses at kapangyarihan na makapagdesisyon sa kung anong proyekto ang idudulog sa programa at maging sa pagpapatakbo nito,” Councilor Rodel said.
(A simple citizen is empowered to speak up and decide on what project should be proposed to the program as well as how to handle the operations of the project.)
To ensure that the volunteers are fully equipped during the implementation, they have to attend seminars or trainings spearheaded by DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS.
“Dahil sa seminar, marami kaming nalaman katulad ng paggawa ng mga papeles,” Maria Teresa Espera, 53, community volunteer explained.
(Through seminars, we learned a lot such as clerical or record-keeping work.)
Teresa also shared that she is proud as a volunteer because she can help her community.
“Bilang volunteer, wala ako hinahangad para sa sarili kundi yung para sa komunidad,” she said.
(As a volunteer, I only work for the welfare of the community and not for myself.)/ramsertan
Report from Katherine Martillana, Community Empowerment Facilitator (CEF)
About DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS
DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS implemented Disaster Response Operations Procedure (DROP) in four (4) municipalities of Sorsogon with a total implementation grant of Php 45,658,050.00
The program has allocated Casiguran with Php 12,398,000.00. To date, Barangay Somal-ot implements the livelihood project with total project cost of Php 491,079.08.
For more details about DSWD Kalahi-CIDSS, follow this link: