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Serbisyo Caravan: Serbisyo sa Tanan (Service to All)

When we were told about how difficult it is to get to Sitio Logdeck, Barangay Tampilisan, Municipality of Kabasalan, Zamboanga Sibugay, we did not exactly know what challenge we accepted until it was time to go. Boy, it took us a whole-day trekking on numerous hills, barefoot walking on muddy trails, crossing over rivers, and climbing on rocks to be able to reach the target beneficiaries.

It was September 23rd of 2020 when we first visited the area of the Subanen Tribe in Sitio Logdeck. It is a community where public facilities and services are barely present due to its geographical location. Acknowledging the needs of the locals, the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program-Provincial Operations Office (POO) of Zamboanga Sibugay pledged to return to the area and introduce them to other agencies that cater to vulnerable individuals and families.

TABANG LOGDECK 2

During the first visit in the area, the team had identified a few immediate and long-term concerns that need to be addressed. Some of the long-term needs include the source of electricity in the barangay and the construction of school buildings to cater to 3rd graders and higher.

As of today, the community only caters to grade 1 and 2 pupils. 3rd and higher graders need to walk 9 kilometers down and uphill and through rivers to attend to school. The POO has already referred this concern to the Department of Education to which the latter responded with a commitment to provide additional grade level and school building in the area.

To help the locals in their immediate concerns, the POO has coordinated with various offices to include the local government unit of Kabasalan, the Department of Agriculture Research Division, Office of the Congresswoman Ann Hofer, Department of Health, Provincial Office of the Health Officer and Governor, Pharmacist and Dental Association, ZAMSURECO 2, Municipal Agricultural Office  (BFAR), 102nd brigade / 44TH Infantry Battalion, business sector, and private individuals with the same yearning to help the community.

Together, they conducted a Serbisyo Caravan activity dubbed as “Tabang Logdeck 2” last December 2020 which converges frontline agencies to address the welfare and other concerns of the indigenous tribe.

The tribal leader called the Timuay, Antonio Ocnip, expressed that the Serbisyo Caravan was the first time that the government and private sector have ever visited their community for such assistance and services.

Apparently, it is their first time to receive gifts, food packs, hygiene kits, family kits, groceries, toys, slippers, among others.

GIVE A MAN A FISH AND YOU FEED HIM FOR A DAY; TEACH A MAN TO FISH AND YOU FEED HIM A LIFETIME

The Serbisyo Caravan also served as an avenue to introduce the locals to more sustainable ways of living. The Municipal Agriculturist, Ms. Miladel Capitanya, introduced the new programs of the Department of Agriculture such as the Rice Program: focusing on Highland Rice, High Value Development Crops Program, Livestock Developing Program, Organic Program, and the Dis-advantage of using Roundup Weedkiller.

Furthermore, Mr. Justein Sampilo, the Science Aid of Department of Agriculture Research Division taught them how to raise and propagate a plant called Trichanthera, and a weed called Signal Grassto feed their livestock naturally and safely without costing them a penny.

Sampilo also discussed the proper way of planting a new variety of hybrid “adlay”, “pechay”, eggplant”, and “tomato” for consumption. Mr. William Roldan, an Agriculture Technician of BFAR, gave a lecture on how to propagate hybrid “tilapia”.

With that knowledge, the indigenous people wasted no time and immediately dug in a vacant lot that is owned by the IP community. And at last, the first-ever fishpond in the barangay was established.

One of the Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries stated that they used to be able to eat fish only when the program releases their cash grants. Now, with their newly created fishpond, they will be able to eat fish anytime they wish.

Taking Care of the ‘ChikiTeeth’

They say that the ‘chikitings’ or the children are our future and so it is our responsibility to take care of them and teach them how to take care of themselves.

Unusual as it may sound, but the indigenous children in Sitio Logdeck have never tried nor seen a toothbrush and a toothpaste. It is a strange activity for them because their parents have never taught them to brush their teeth. This is not a thing to them, and it has been this way since the early generation of their tribe in Barangay Tampilisan.

The children seemed to be so interested and curious about it that they even tasted the toothpaste to see if it is any good.

The Municipal Link demonstrated the proper way to brush teeth; the children enthusiastically observed and tried it on their own.

Other Services

The 44th Infantry Battalion headed by Staff Sergeant Roldan Librando provided free haircut services to the indigenous people of Logdeck.

Parlor games for children and Supplemental Feeding were also held by the Zamboanga Sibugay POO Team.

Through the help of concerned private individuals, various offices and establishments, the Serbisyo Caravan was able to provide tokens, gifts, seedlings, medicines and vitamins, breads, and many other useful kits to the indigenous people of Sitio Logdeck.

Serbisyo Caravan is an initiative of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program that aims to converge stakeholders and service providers to address the immediate needs of a community especially ones that are hardly reached by government agencies. The abovementioned Serbisyo Caravan was held last December 16-18, 2020.

The Department would like to send its gratitude to all agencies, offices, and individuals that extended help and effort to contribute to the well-being of the IP community in Sitio Logdeck, Barangay Tampilisan, Municipality of Kabasalan, Zamboanga Sibugay. This proves that no family who needs help is left behind if we work together for a common goal. Truly, Serbisyo Caravan is a service for all.

This post was written by:

- who has written 111 posts on DSWD Field Office IX Official Website.


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