Community-based action breeds success

THE Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Agricultural Research (DA-BAR)-funded Community-based Participatory Action Research (CPAR) has produced good results, particularly among stakeholders in Lamut in Ifugao, San Fernando in Camarines Sur and San Luis in Batangas.

A recent forum jointly organized by the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) and the DA-BAR narrated successful and motivating stories that were outcomes of CPAR projects.

According to Dr. Rico Ancog, SEARCA program lead for Emerging Innovation for Growth, the project assessed the overall implementation of the CPAR program and captured the insights of the implementers, proponents and the CPAR beneficiaries.

"Besides sharing the technical aspects of the projects implemented, the documentation also showed the projects' impact to the community they were conducted in," Ancog said.

The DA-BAR has commissioned SEARCA to conduct the project "Building Up from the Gains: Lessons from and Improvements for Effective Implementation of the CPAR program."

Ancog said CPAR also endorses the demonstration of improved farming systems and fishing technologies and practices fitting the needs and requirements of a particular micro agro-climatic environment within a given municipality or province.

He also noted that CPAR's collaborative approach in research equitably involves all possible partners in the process and recognizes the unique strengths that each entity brings.

"In the town of Lamut in Ifugao province, CPAR partners are still benefiting from the knowledge that they gained in tilapia production even beyond the project duration," Ancog said.

He said the Ragiwdiw technology was also commended by participants. The technology was introduced in Camarines Sur that turns grass weeds into useful and marketable items.

The forum was attended by 215 participants comprising farmer and fisher partners involved in the CPAR program as well as DA-BAR project researchers and implementers.

Also introduced during the forum was the concept of a results-based monitoring and evaluation system to improve monitoring and evaluation of projects beyond project life.

Anthony Obligado, DA-BAR Research Coordination Division head, also commended the efforts of the CPAR projects representative in preparing the framework for the CPAR program as a starting point.

Obligado assured the researchers that more assistance will be given to them to improve the program implementation.