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URBAN GARDENING. A variety of vegetables are being raised by residents of a village in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija, who have finished a 45-day urban gardening training. The project dubbed as "Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan" aims to help the villagers earn additional income. (Photo by Marilyn Galang)

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija — Some 87 residents of Barangay Daang Sarile here, mostly beneficiaries of the government’s Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), finished a 45-day training on urban gardening on Wednesday.


Alberto Pangilinan, 44, a motorcycle mechanic, said he is optimistic of earning additional income from an erstwhile unutilized backyard, which is now planted with different vegetables such as eggplant, tomato, chili and lettuce.

The training dubbed “Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan”, which also includes a seminar on production of organic fertilizer and pesticide, was principally sponsored by SM Foundation, the charity arm of the giant mall chain.

“Wala kaming ginamit na kahit anong commercial na abono at pamatay-kulisap (we did not use any kind of commercial fertilizer and insecticide),” Pangilinan said.

The scheme, he believed, will help them earn more. “Malaking tulong sa amin (It is a big help to us),” he said.

Cristina Angeles, assistant vice president of SM Foundation, said the project is in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture, City Social Welfare and Development (CSWD), and village officials.

She added that the program is being implemented in different parts of the country with beneficiaries already numbering 23,000.

“Kami po ay nagpapasalamat sa mga nagtanim ng halaman, sa mga nagtagumpay kami po ay very proud sa inyo kasi patuloy niyo kaming pakakainin (We are thankful to those who planted, for those who have succeeded, we are very proud of you because you continue to feed us),” Angeles said.

She asked for God’s continuous guidance for the urban farmers, who held a harvest festival in the village on Tuesday, where they prepared dishes using their organic vegetables. (PNA)

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