At least 75 youth groups and individuals benefited from a PHP5.5 million grant as startup capital for their agri-based projects in Caraga Region, regional agriculture officials said Tuesday.
Emmylou Presilda, Department of Agriculture in the Caraga Region (DA-13) information officer, said 40 individual youths were provided with PHP50,000 each startup capital during the ceremony held in this city Monday.
“Another 35 youth groups from the different provinces in the region also received PHP100,000 each as capitalization for the agriculture-based ventures,” Presilda said in an interview.
In a statement, DA-13 said the release of the financial support was carried out through the 2nd Young Farmers Challenge: Kabataang Agribiz Competitive Grant Assistance Program of the agency.
“The program also gets support from Senator Imee Marcos to encourage aspiring youths to engage in agriculture and fishery enterprises,” Rebecca Atega, the DA-13 technical director for operations, was quoted as saying.
Young people are also urged to focus their ventures on production, processing and supply chain marketing, Atega added.
“I hope you will pursue a more profitable agribusiness to help our country,” she said, adding that agriculture is the solution to ensuring that the country will have access to safe, affordable and available food.
The DA, she said, will provide full support to the youths, whether individuals or groups, to become successful agricultural entrepreneurs.
Among the individual beneficiaries of the program was Jessa Myr Balandra, 24, proprietor of the Umaalima Goat Production in the town of Nasipit, Agusan del Norte.
“With the capital provided by DA, I intend to purchase highly productive meat goat breeds, particularly the Anglo Nubian and Boer breeds,” Balandra said.
The funding, she said, is a huge help to realize the plans of young entrepreneurs like her in the province and the whole region. (PNA)