January 29, 2023

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Garbage management volunteers in this municipality got a boost from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), which provided them rice and face masks.

DOST Provincial Science and Technology Center head Sheila Marie Claver led the delivery of 25 sacks of 25-kilogram rice and 200 face masks to the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office last April 24 for re-packing and distribution to the 176 Bantay-Basura volunteers of the municipality.

Cecil Dionisio of the Provincial Science and Tehnology Center Benguet said they thought of providing relief assistance when a group from Quezon City gave them P10,500 as incentive for responding to the latter’s request for assistance to purchase highland vegetables from  Benguet.

Dionisio said the center coordinated with the local government of Tublay for the purchase of 1,250 packs of vegetables from farmers. The initiative also provided cash assistance to the volunteers who repacked the vegetables into individual pack of five kilos each.

PSTC-Benguet decided to use the incentive from the buyer for the production of face masks. MENRO head Art Pedro suggested to provide it to the Bantay Basura volunteers who received minimal incentive, Dionisio said.

PSTC Benguet, with additional donations from DOST staff and friends, raised P25,000 which they used to buy rice.

The face masks were donated by DOST Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program cooperators Maribel Linggon of Mabel’s Tailoring and Judith Alfonso of Twin Jade Mae Fashion.

Aside from the MENRO volunteers, the two SETUP coordinators are also helping PSTC-Benguet in the distribution of face masks to the different barangay frontliners in Baguio and Benguet.

DOST-CAR headed by Director  Nancy Bantog, along with the different PSTCs in the region and partners, have been finding ways to help frontliners in the different communities of  the Cordillera in the fight against Covid-19. – Carlito C. Dar