QUEZON CITY, Philippines— The Binhi ng Pag-asa Program (BPP) is set to assist and empower at least 3,760 youth around the country this year, through localized training on leadership and agri-entrepreneurial skills.
As such, this year’s implementation was formally launched by the Department of Agriculture (DA), through the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI), and the Office of Senator Grace Poe (OSGP) on June 7, 2022 via Zoom. The project launch was graced by Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar and OSGP Chief of Staff Brian Poe Llamanzares. More than 90 representatives from the various local government units (LGUs), provincial and municipal agriculture offices, selected youth representatives from the eight provinces and from the ATI Regional Training Centers (ATI-RTCs) and Central Office.
In his message, Secretary Dar expressed his confidence in the youth and their significant role in society, especially in ensuring a productive, modernized, and prosperous future for Philippine Agriculture. “We have always believed that the youth are the leaders and drivers of the future. It is the youth, ordinary young men and women determined to forge their future throughout their history to spark all the great change and progress in this country. Youthful energy builds up the economy and holds our leaders accountable for welfare programs,” he said.
On the other hand, OSGP’s Chief of Staff Llamanzares believes the youth embodies the idealism, integrity, and courage needed for the transformation of the Philippine society, especially the agriculture sector. He said, “Ang mga katangian na ito ay kailangan pa rin natin para mapaunlad ang sektor ng agrikultura. Ito ang mga dahilan upang maitaguyod ang Binhi ng Pag-asa Program noong 2017. The Binhi ng Pag-asa Program aims to empower the young people to become competent agripreneur by undergoing trainings on leadership and agriprenuership so they can become partners in community development.”
The BPP has been extending support to thousands of youth from 15 provinces for two years, in 2017 and 2021. For 2022, the program will focus on eight provinces, namely: Bataan, Tarlac, Batangas, Oriental Mindoro, Camarines Norte, Iloilo, Zamboanga Sibugay, and North Cotabato.
DA-ATI Director Mula said, “The program was realized to produce competitive agricultural leaders who will lead the changes we hope to achieve in the sector.”
The ATI-RTCs, in partnership with the LGUs, will select the youth beneficiaries and equip them with necessary, timely, and relevant skills and knowledge as well as actual means to enable their agripreneurship journey.
The beneficiaries will receive training on leadership and values formation as well as agriculture and fisheries production and technologies. Aside from extension support, they will also receive their chosen agricultural and fisheries starter kit – Php 11,000/kit for provincial beneficiaries, and Php 9,000/kit for city or municipal level.
To reach and help more youth engage in agripreneurship in more years to come, the OSGP is lobbying for the institutionalization of the BPP. shared, “In the next three years, our commitment in our office, ay pagyayabungin pa po natin itong Binhi ng Pag-asa, we will try our very best to institutionalize the project, para after three years ay tuloy tuloy pa rin ang Binhi ng Pag-asa,” said OSGP Chief for Political Affairs Jyleazar F. Dela Rosan.
Meanwhile, the DA-ATI is thankful for the strong partnership with the OSGP. It also urged the youth to do their part once selected as beneficiaries. ATI-Partnerships and Accreditation Division OIC-Chief Nemielynn P. Pangilinan expressed, “Thank you for OSGP for partnering with ATI for this kind of undertaking, we strongly believe that after this program we can empower the youth to become competent agripreneurs in their respective regions and provinces. Sa mga piling kabataan, mapalad kayo at isa kayo sa mga napiling beneficiary ng programang ito, hindi lahat ng mga kabataan ay nabibigyan ng ganitong pagkakataon.”
The national activities include the conduct of Module Writeshop on June 15-17, National Training of Trainers (ToT) on July 4-7, Social Entrepreneurship Training on October 10-14, and National Summit and Year-End Summit on December 5-7.
Meanwhile, the ATI-RTCs will conduct the provincial and city or municipal training from July to November as well as the provision of starter kits from August to November.