December 6, 2022

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – The Department of Science and Technology-Cordillera and the Benguet State University led the ceremonial launching last Dec. 20 of the book on traditional health practices with DOST Sec. Fortunato Dela Peña as the guest of honor and speaker.

The book entitled “Agas Ay Nabe – as Ken Pokhus” is an output of the DOST-Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) funded project, “A documentation and digitalization of traditional knowledge and practices on health: Kankana-eys of Palina and Ekachakran ethnolinguistic groups of the Cordillera.”

 Implemented by BSU in partnership with the indigenous peoples communities of Palina in Kibungan, Benguet and Kadaclan in Barlig, Mountain Province, the project seeks to uphold the healing knowledge IPs and their forbearers have cultivated.

Dela Peña commended the project implementers, their partners and other stakeholders for a breakthrough book that upholds the communities’ right to their healing knowledge.

“This is a timely response to the call for community-based health care system amidst the pandemic. It is interesting that this book also contains the various stories, narratives of healers and conversation with community members aside from the medicinal plants that are actively being used for primary health care by the indigenous cultural communities,” he said.

“I commend the project implementers and partners for the success of this endeavor as I hope that our efforts will continue to benefit communities and inspire more researchers in the region”, he added.

DOST Director  Nancy Bantog affirmed DOST’s  commitment  to support research and development efforts in preserving indigenous knowledge, systems and practices (IKSP) which Cordillera is known to be rich of.

There are currently 35 approved research and development projects in the Cordillera with 10 under the PCHRD program.

“DOST-CAR will continue to strengthen and pursue its efforts for the research and development initiatives in the region. We hope that the region’s research ecosystem will continue their passion to do relevant researches and innovations that will provide technology solutions to our developmental concerns, not only for the region but those with national application as well,” Bantog said.

Joining Dela Peña and Bantog in the launching at the BSU Research and Extension Building were Science and Technology Information Institute Director Richard Burgos, Dr. Isidro Sia of PCHRD PH Institute of Traditional and Alternative Health Care, the project proponents headed by CorCAARRD Director Dr. Ruth Batani, and BSU officials headed by President Felipe Comila. – Carlito C. Dar