John Marco Martin of St. Isidore; Jhunn and Lita Castro of Castro-Tomas Farm School; Mayor Romeo Capitulo of San Jose, Tarlac; SMFI-Outreach Program AVP Cristie Angeles; Gerry Gomez of TESDA; and She Solis of SM Tarlac graced the graduation ceremony in KSK-San Jose Tarlac
The Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan (KSK) on Sustainable Agriculture Program of SM Foundation Inc. (SMFI) in partnership with Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) commenced with 200 scholar-graduates in Tarlac province.
The KSK 6 week-long lecture and hands-on training and Organic Agriculture Production NCII has taught participants how to grow safe and sustainable crops, vegetables and fruits, in their own backyards, inspiring them to become entrepreneurs, amidst economic challenges, limited planting space and resources, and changing weather conditions. The 13-year“farmers training program” of KSK shifts its main focus and core value to sustainable agriculture – sustaining and developing the livelihood of farmers.
SMFI launched its 221st batch of Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan (KSK) on Sustainable Agriculture Program in four sites: Castro-Tomas Agritechture Farm School, Camiling, Tarlac with 100 participants; fifty (50) participants from Tingtano Farm School, Brgy. Burgos, San Jose, Tarlac; twenty-five (25) from Josapin Integrated Farm, Sitio Libtong, Brgy. San Roque, La Paz, Tarlac; and twenty-five (25) from at Naturale Integrated Farm, Brgy. Bulo, Victoria, Tarlac.
Along with TESDA, the program is also in partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Tourism (DOT), SM Markets, SM Supermalls, and St. Isidore “The Farmer” Learning Center, Inc.
These government and private organizations were able to consolidate resources which helped enhanced SM’s Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan on Sustainable Agriculture Program that is essential in producing quality, safe, fresh fruits and vegetables.
KSK on Sustainable Agriculture Program is a holistic training program designed to prepare its farmer participants in becoming productive and effective farmer entrepreneurs for agriculture sustainability and food security. It will aid in creation of opportunities, skills/ education enhancement, livelihood and employment, KSK-SAP’s complete value chain will uplift and empower marginalized farmers. Key program goals include: Technical vocational trainings adapting new farming technologies and development of entrepreneurial skills that will led to profitable enterprises.
Capacity building, business values, simple accounting and post-harvest handling are also part of the program. SM partners have tapped possible markets for the participants. To further increase the self-esteem of the farmers, TESDA provided scholarships in Organic Agriculture Production NCII and Agricrops Production NCII to our farmer beneficiaries in identified sites all over the country.
SM’s Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan Farmers’ Training Program was launched in 2007 and has reached out to more than 26,000 marginalized farmers all around the country. It has provided livelihood opportunities, and to many, food security, primarily through market linkages.