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SIFI under its RSS (Responsible Sourcing from Smallholders) Program conducted a meeting to Child Rights Advocates (CRAs) and two different trainings for ARBOs held at the SIFI Training Center, Talisay City.

The meeting with 7 CRAs was held on Dec. 4 to make an assessment on the quality of their community “tipon-tipons.”   It was agreed that in year 2020, home based income generating activity (IGA) will be mainstreamed in the alternative livelihood assistance to ARBOs. Messaging on Child Labour/Child Rights shall be continued through innovative awareness raising events.  Performance results showed that CRAs were able to help their communities by spreading the knowledge they learned from SIFI.  With the opportunity given to them (hosting sessions to farmers), it has enhanced their socialization skills and self-confidence. Child Labour in the farm was no longer practiced and farmers were using their PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) during field work.

The training on Dec, 5 was attended by 5 ARBOs; 1) Salome Farmers Association; ( 2) San Antonio Farmers & Farm Workers Association; 3) San Antonio Farmers Association; ( 4) Sitio Calapatan, Sta. Ana & Ascalon Farmers Association; and 5) Hda. Virgen 2-3 Duplex Workers Association.

Their businesses were composed of rice retailing, grocery, swine breeding, hog raising and fattening. Each group reported their livelihood status and plans. At the end of the training, participants were given the knowledge on how to reinvent their businesses, analyze and monitor financial status and sales performance, cost control and operation improvement, marketing and legal requirements.

The training on Business Planning was held on Dec 6 and attended by 20 participants from 5 ARBOs; 1) Mirasol Dev’t Corporation Agrarian Reform Cooperative; ( 2) Vasquez Dev’t Corporation Farmers Association; 3) Tres Hrmanos Small Farmers Association; 4) San Juan Torena Agrarian Reform Cooperative; and (5) Hda. Basag Farm Workers Association.

Participants were able to identify other livelihood opportunities and determine the economic and financial aspect of venturing a business. They were given an activity to draft and present their livelihood proposals. It was observed that most of them wanted to start with rice retailing/trading. Ms. Judy Ann Gonzaga (RSS-Consultant) shared some successful stories of RSS-assisted ARBOs to give inspiration and motivation to start other small but viable ventures.