RTD Wilson A. Cerbito says that progress in the farming sector will not be realized without the involvement of women
RTD Wilson A. Cerbito says that progress in the farming sector will not be realized without the involvement of women

TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines-In a recently concluded two-day Program Implementation Review, Planning and Budgeting Workshop of the Gender and Development (GAD) Technical Working Group held on April 4-5, 2013 at Patio Victoria, San Jose, Tacloban City, the resource speakers emphasized the significant contribution of women in agriculture development. Dr. Wilson A. Cerbito, Department of Agriculture-8’s Regional Technical Director for Research and Regulations, said that progress in the farming sector will not be realized without the involvement of women. “If we try to think more deeply, women actually have a great influence not only in their respective households, but also in terms of decision-making and strategy implementation so that agricultural enterprises can be more productive and profitable. In fact, many of our women become efficient hands-on farmers and agri-entrepreneurs,” he mused. RTD Cerbito added that men and women should be given equal recognition, opportunity and access to resources especially in food production. Thus, he suggested that the GAD TWG should make a clear plan for a more effective implementation of GAD-responsive activities in the region. As to the present GAD Program supervision, RTD Cerbito commended the active leadership of Ms Eva T. Adora, DA-8’s GAD Focal Person, for her initiative to empower women associations in the region by not only involving them in various activities of the DA but by conducting several fora especially designed to address their concerns. “Through our GAD Focal Person, women’s associations are also encouraged to have their groups registered in order for them to avail of the various programs and services of DA,” RTD Cerbito intoned. Also, Ms Ma. Aurora Teresita W. Tabada, Regional GAD Coordinator from the Visayas Consortium for Agriculture and Resource Program (ViCARP) at the Visayas State University (VSU), Baybay City, Leyte, focused her discussion on the highlights of the Magna Carta of Women, the harmonized GAD guidelines, and the core elements of gender-responsive programs and projects. Ms Tabada stated that gender equality can best be advocated through mainstreaming of GAD-related strategies including funding initiatives with the DA banner programs. Meantime, Mr. Paul Nigel P. Custodio, DA-8’s Media Production Aide, presented the summary of proposals drafted by the women associations who participated during the Rural Women Congress held on December 10-11, 2012 at the Leyte Park Hotel, this city.(Jessa Faye E. Macapanas/PR)