Amid pandemic concerns and difficulties arise hope and ingenuity for the beneficiaries of Community of Hope (COH) in Tacloban. “This COVID-19 is a blessing in disguise for us because it strengthened and united us as one community here in COH,” Salvacion Soriano shares.
Salvacion mentioned that before the lockdown, the people in their community are disciplined enough to restrict their area from outsiders and follow government orders for security purposes.
Being one of the beneficiaries of COH has also inspired Salvacion to give back to her community. “I love to serve the people here that’s why I chose to stay as a volunteer in our community. It’s also one of the ways I want to express my gratitude to OB for all the help they give us.”
COH understands that in this time of health crisis, it is important that their beneficiaries are empowered to produce their own food. This is the reason why COH continues to promote its strategies in fighting food insecurity through farming and seed raising. Recently, they distributed seeds of okra, pechay, and eggplant which residents can plant in their own backyards and in other designated areas for planting.
COH also organized the Rural Improvement Club (RIC) to motivate the women in the community to get involved in the farm with lesser physical work to maintain their productivity at home.
The initial purpose of the RIC, as discussed during the assembly with City Agriculturist Alfredo “Boy” Camposano, together with Ms. Aileen Quimbo, is for the COH women to support the farmers in producing natural and organic agricultural inputs like pesticide and fertilizer that are highly needed primarily in the COH Farm.
RIC also aims to train and engage women in food technology and growing various herbal products and agricultural byproducts which, eventually, can be sold to other farmers or farmer associations in Tacloban City, Samar, and Leyte.