Women of Sorsogon eager to add to husbands’ income
By Bennie A. Recebido
SORSOGON CITY --- Nanay Girle woke up very early in the morning of July 1, a Saturday, praying it wouldn’t rain that day. She visibly had a sleepless night as she felt excited about what would happen to the activity she had been preparing for the past two days. She was one of the volunteers working overtime at Sitio Tinago, Barangay Pamurayan, West District of this city, where the event would take place, wanting to make sure that everything would be ready. Nanay Girlie, 49, with three kids to her live-in partner, would represent Pamurayan Women’s Organization in the Barangay Forum organized by Philippine Information Agency (PIA) where, as their leader, she would bring to the “Hururon-huron sa Barangay” the sentiments of their sector in their community. The Barangay forum, translated into “Hururon-huron sa Barangay ni Presidente,” was designed to be a platform where different sectors of community were represented. Representatives were encouraged to express their sector’s sentiments and needs that can directly be addressed by the national government. In Sorsogon, the agricultural and fishing community of Pamurayan was chosen as venue for the forum. “Kaming mga kababaihan ng Pamurayan ay nagnanais na matulungan ang aming mga partner sa paghahanapbuhay. Sila ang nagtatanim ng mga seaweeds, kami naman po sana ay matulungang mag-process at magbenta o magnegosyo ng mga seaweeds matapos nila itong ma-harvest,” stated Girlie Jazareno or “Nanay Girlie” during the open forum. In response to the query, Noni Enolva, public information officer of the regional office of Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), explained that the seaweeds produced in Pamurayan has a big opportunity for processing. “Our plan is to bring the key members of the women’s organization of Pamurayan the soonest time from now to an exposure trip in Pili, Camarines Sur to have them undergo a hands-on demonstration and appreciate seaweeds processing,” Enolva said. Milanie Janer, 43, who represented the small scale business sector in the barangay said they wanted to put up a small business, but didn’t have enough capital and lacked adequate knowledge how to go about it. According to Trade and Industry Specialist Lea Mapagdalita of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in Sorsogon, DTI had a loan window that assists micro, small and medium enterprises. Mapagdalita advised the entrepreneurs to visit the Negosyo Centers in Sorsogon City and avail themselves of the services offered by the center. “Aside from the video presentations I had about Negosyo Center, inquiring directly from our Negosyo Centers will help you understand and do the process better,” explained Mapagdalita, adding that the DTI can assist them in linking with the provincial and city Negosyo Centers. After the forum that lasted for about four hours, women of Pamurayan expressed optimism that the activity would help them connect with the proper government agencies that could address their concerns. Apart from DTI and BFAR, several line agencies sent representatives to the forum, namely, Department of Labor and Employment, Technical Education Skills and Development Authority, Department of Agriculture, and Philhealth. The forum was attended by at least 178 residents of Pamurayan.