“Sulong 2020”, Diwata-Women in Resource Development’s kickoff activity for the year with its project partners, the Land Rover Club of the Philippines, Philippine Mine Safety and Environment Association and FWD Insurance was held on 29 February 2020, starting with a program generously hosted by SGV & Co at its Clark Freeport Zone office. Our special guests were the Ambassadors of India (Jaideep Madumdar), Sweden (Harald Fries) and Sri Lanka (Shobini Gunasekera), and Counsellor Sheona McKenna representing Australian Ambassador Steven Robinson AO. It was followed by a visit to the project site at Sitio Caguing, Bamban Tarlac.
Our project “Tanging Tanglaw: Turning IP Grandmothers into Solar Engineers” has come a long way from its inception in 2015. Since then, we have sent 7 Aeta women to the Barefoot College in Tilonia, Rajasthan, India to be trained as “solar engineers”.
Upon their return, they have been installing, repairing and maintaining solar panels in their communities in Bamban, Tarlac and Gala, Zambales.
The Bamban, Tarlac community has completed a basic financial literacy training course designed and facilitated by FWD Insurance together with Bayan Academy. During the training, the community expressed their hope for a sustainable livelihood program, particularly through the improvement of their agriculture skills.
We have brought on board a forester-agriculturist who has been teaching them scientific farming methods. One of the current challenges is to find regular buyers of their produce.
The next phase is to ensure continuous water supply, hopefully through solar-powered water pumps.
Diwata Group Photo – Diwata with its Project Partners and the Sitio Caguing, Bamban, Tarlac Community.