Dream big, start small.
Everything has to start somewhere. At some point, all big and successful entrepreneurial ventures began from whispers of innovative thoughts turned into sparks of creativity and eventually transformed into burning flames of passion powerful enough to make these dreams come to reality.
The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Region 8 through the Fisheries Coastal Resource and Livelihood (FishCORAL) Project and the CIP-FoodSTART+, are making a breakthrough in aiding and empowering fisherfolk communities through the Aqua-based Business School (ABS). The said program aims to develop and capacitate fisherfolk associations in the enhancement of their products most especially in the transformation of their harvests into value-added fishery products that will generate greater profits to these communities.
As part of the fifth module of the Aqua-Based Business School with Gender and Climate Change Perspective, the Stakeholders’ Validation Workshop was conducted last April 4-5, 2019 at Tacloban City. The validation workshop was participated by five fisherfolk associations bringing along with them their respective value-added products to be thoroughly assessed and evaluated by distinguished stakeholders from different government agencies, academe, NGOs, and potential private investors. The said fisherfolk associations were, (1) Taytay Abante Kababayen-an Association from Guiuan, Eastern Samar, (2) Fisheries and Agricultural Crop Producers Association of Bacjao in Balangiga, Eastern Samar, (3) Maligaya Agri-Business Association (MABA) from Jiabong, Samar, (4) Lewing Fisherfolks and Farmers Association (LeFFa) from Anahawan, Samar, and (5) Tiklos Kabuhian han Kababayen-an ha San Antonio – Food Processor (TKKSA) in Basey Samar.
Through the validation workshop, the products of the ABS enrollees underwent a thorough assessment in terms of the products’ taste, color, texture and other factors that may affect its marketability such as packaging, labeling, and its manufacturing processes. Insightful pieces of advice and recommendations on how their products could be further improved were also given by stakeholders that were present during the event.
Furthermore, the ABS presented a great avenue for these fisherfolk associations to showcase their products and receive beneficial insights for their upcoming Business Launch scheduled for May of this year.
The journey towards a sustainable and progressive fisheries community starts with the empowerment of our marginalized heroes, the fisherfolk. Through the programs and projects that are intensively focused towards this goal, the Bureau is confident that many success stories of fisheries livelihood turned into big-time enterprises will originate from our little fisherfolk communities.
Written by Cheeka Dale Boco, Information Officer I, BFAR Region 8
Originally posted on the BFAR Region 8 Facebook Page.