The first community pantry in Maginhawa St., Quezon City gave birth to hundreds of community pantries all over the country including the rural provinces of Cagayan Valley. In keeping with the #4PsBayanihan spirit, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries in Cagayan Valley demonstrated their enthusiasm to participate in community-driven activities that support families during the pandemic.
In the municipalities of Sta. Teresita, Pamplona and Piat 4Ps beneficiaries donated vegetables grown in their personal and communal bio-intesive garden to community pantry organizers in exchange for other household necessities. Maintaining a personal and communal garden is encouraged by the program to ensure food security as well as good health and nutrition for the family.
According to Kresta Salagan, Municipal Link of Sta. Teresita, “Their goal (in donating) is to give back to the community with a little harvest from their communal gardens which they worked on and maintained for several months.”
In barangay Lattac, Sto. Niño, Cagayan, the community pantry was organized by the beneficiaries. Besides the usual produce from their gardens, the group even included handmade face masks in order to ensure that minimum health standards will be observed.
Youth as they are, the Sangguniang Kabataan of Sta. Catalina, City of Ilagan, Isabela has yet again demonstrated their tenacity and enthusiasm in exhibiting the value of sharing and caring. Through the leadership of Melvin Adurable, former 4Ps child beneficiary, the SK managed to organize not just one but three community pantries situated in strategic locations all over the barangay.
The barangay council of Sta. Catalina has fully supported this endeavour with the Lupon Tagapamayapa even providing assistance in maintaining the minimum health protocols of both organizers and recipients of the event. The supplies given away came from the LGU, private individuals and organizations as well as 4Ps communal gardens.
At the end of their first day of implementation, this is what Adurable had to say: “Nakakapagod man pero sobrang nakaktaba ng puso ang makita namin na sa simpleng pamamaraan ay may napasaya ang aming munting inisyatibo.”
Viva Novo Vizcayano
For the 4Ps residents of Aritao, Nueva Vizcaya, they started out collecting donations for their proposed community pantry over the weekend. They were able to collect 185 kilos of rice, 157 kilos of various vegetables, 53 kilos of rootcrops, 24 kilos of fresh fruits, 4 trays of eggs and a box of instant noodles.
Donors include the local chief executive, private groups and individuals and the 4Ps beneficiaries themselves. 4Ps members were more than willing to donate the produce from their own communal gardens as their personal supplies are pretty much covered by their backyard gardens.
According to Liza Diaz who is also a recipient of the Livelihood Assistance Grant under the Bayanihan Act, “Ang pagtulong sa kapwa ay hindi nasusukat sa antas ng pamumuhay o dami ng naimbag na tulong. Ang mahalaga ay bukal sa puso ang ating pakikipag-kapwa.”
###with reports from POO Cagayan and Arnold Birung, written by Jeanet Antolin-Lozano