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Boat dispersal benefits small fisherfolk group

By Mavic Conde

Members of the National Federation of Small Fisherfolk Organization in the Philippines, also known as PAMALAKAYA in Albay have received three new fishing boats from the Climate Change Network for Community-based Initiatives (CCNCI) as livelihood assistance.

The donor, CCNCI, “an alliance of organizations working for climate justice, environmental rights and sustainable development,” turned over the fishing boats under its “Boat for Communal Fishing Project” in coordination with PAMALAKAYA, and its regional chapters LAMBAT-Bicol and KMP-Bicol.

“The boat [dispersal] was part of the recovery response to the fisherfolk’s plight following successive calamities last year,” according to PAMALAKAYA’s news release.

Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) -Bicol said in an online interview that the big boat can carry 10 people, while the two smaller boats can carry five, adding that the turnover ceremony was coordinated with the project areas’ barangay councils.

“It’s use is communal (among members), and a rule is in place for income sharing. But those who do the fishing will have a higher share,” the group said.

Fishing boats with nets can cost from P100,000 to P200,000 according to the group. This will help those whose boats, including the motors, were destroyed by the successive typhoons that hit the province in the last quarter of 2020. While other fisherfolk really don’t have one even before the typhoons’ devastations, the group added.

KMP-Bicol also urged the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) to provide cash assistance to all affected small fisherfolk and fishing tools based on their actual needs. “These will help them cope with the effects of the pandemic which are further worsened by the recent typhoons,” the group said.


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