Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Jed as our Program Manager for Livelihoods in Leyte

Jed Christian Sayre is deployed as our Program Manager for Livelihoods in Leyte to support survivors of Typhoon Haiyan. He is based in Ormoc City and travels daily to neighboring municipalities. Jed's was graduated from Xavier University in Cagayan de Oro and from the Coady International Institute in Canada. His profile is presented below;

Awards and Partnerships:

a. Fellow, Philippines 21 Young Leaders Initiative. Asia Society Philippine Foundation, Inc. The fellowship is awarded for his efforts towards the development of an equitable and just Philippine Society.
b. Winner, Asia-Pacific Future 100. Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs and Social Change-makers. 2009. One of the most prestigious awards for social entrepreneurs in Asia.
c. Grantee, Idea Wild, USA. Biodiversity and Youth Rural Improvement Project.  November 2009 to present.
d. Grantee, Japan Fund for Water, Japan. Project to Conserving Water, Promote Ecological Sanitation and Improve Food Security. August 2009 to February 15, 2010.
e. Co-winner, International Competition on Integrated Rural Development, Rehovot, Israel, December 2011.

Work Experiences:

a. Program Manager, Local Livelihoods and Sustainable Small-scale Agriculture, Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development Foundation, Inc. June 2012 to present. Provide organizational, technical and management support to the promotion of local livelihoods and sustainable agriculture.  I also promote and manage youth entrepreneurial activities in the project areas.
b. Municipal Councilor, Libertad Municipality. July 1, 2010 to May 30, 2013. I promote agricultural development and local livelihoods and assist in  in Libertad Municipality, Misamis Oriental.
b. Founder and Adviser, Association of Locally-Empowered Youth-Northern Mindanao (ALEY-NM). May 2007 to present.  Youth empowerment through ecological sanitation, home-gardening and local livelihoods. I designed the community development approach of the association, write project proposals, join project competitions and liaise with prospective partners and supporters.
d.  Originator and Proprietor, Jed’s Kofi. January 2008 to present. Jed’s Kofi is locally-made coffee from corn, coffee, moringa and lemon-grass designed to provide forward-linkage for farm products of small farmers at the same time employing local women in the production process.

e. Co-founder, Ecosan Club Philippines. April 2009.  The Ecosan Club promotes ecological sanitation and the safe re-use of human waste in agriculture and small-scale forestry in order to close the loop between agriculture and food consumption.

Leyte Disaster-Resilient Conference and Multi-purpose Training Center

When Super-typhoon Haiyan ravaged Leyte and nearby provinces it lay waste too vast agricultural lands. Leyte is a coconut producing area and the strong winds destroyed most of the coconut trees uprooting the trees or cutting them at the middle. The government is not responding well in terms of helping the small farmers either because they have no resources or because the damage is just too massive in scale.
Aside from the coconut trees, all other subsistence crops especially in the upland areas of Leyte has been destroyed, exposing the farmers to extreme famine and hardships in the short and long-term.
The WAND Foundation started responding to the needs of the Typhoon Yolanda survivors in Leyte 4 days after the typhoon struck by sending 2 elf trucks full with emergency food packs and pre-fabricated toilet facilities for installation and use by community residents. The WAND is a recipient of international awards some of which are the, Bill and Melinda Gates Award for Global Health Explorations, Israel International Award and the Tech Awards for Technology Benefiting Humanity.

The WAND Foundation is now implementing 2 major projects in Leyte, a. Low-cost safe sanitation project, and, b. Food resilience through root crop production and vegetable gardening.

Our plan is for us to be able to build a “Leyte Disaster-Resilient Conference and Multi-purpose Training Center.” The Center will serve the needs of marginalized farmers and artisans in their search for sustainable solutions to the ravages of Typhoon Yolanda and subsequent super-typhoons. They said that with climate change, super-typhoons will be more and more frequent and Leyte is one favoured path to this calamitous situation, hence the need to be prepared.

We will negotiate for a 5-year agreement a 1-hectare land where the center can be built with Barangay officials of Barangay Hugpa, Ormoc City. Barangay Hugpa is an upland barangay in Ormoc City and most people are dirt-poor. Of the 175 families only 2 have toilets! This is indeed an ideal place for a conference and multi-purpose center due to its precarious location and accessibility from the city.
The area around the center will be developed into a sustainable perma-culture farm with fruit and timber tree, root crop and vegetable demonstration, coconut seedling growing and fruit nursery, vegetable seed production and small animal raising. The local people will work and learn and earn income from the farm and then become certified “barefoot” agricultural technicians able to help others.

For sustainability, the center will invite trainees and eco-tourists as well as sell the products namely vegetables, vegetable seeds, coconut seedlings, fruit tree seedlings to visitors and the market in Ormoc.
Aside from seeing the activities of the center, the visitors will also be able to visit the houses of neighbouring farmers and see their own implementation of gardens, rainwater harvesting, organic fertilizer production and sustainable livelihood activities.

The requested amount will be used to build a typhoon-resilient center made of coconut lumber and bamboo, ecosan toilet system, ferrocement rainwater catcher and an organic fertilizer vermi-composting facility. The signage of the donor will be displayed permanently in the entrance of the center.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Vegetable Gardening as Food Security Measures in Leyte

The WAND Foundation is partnering with the Association of Locally-Empowered Youth in Northern Mindanao in implementing urban gardening with Typhoon Yolanda survivors in Leyte. This initiative will be led by Jed Christian Sayre and Michelle Frances Sayre. According to Michelle, "our project is about urban gardening, mainly because it is close to our hearts having parents who are small farmers (and NGO leaders) and because we think our approach in urban gardening best embodies the Ten Accomplished Youth Organization ideals of generating impact to the stakeholders, able to harness the spirit of volunteerism, creativity and innovation, sustainability and effective use of resources." The impact generation is because most of poor urban youths have nothing to do and maintaining vegetable gardens means income and improved nutrition for them. People should realize that gardening is fun and recyclable resources around the house can be used to start one. Filipinos according to the Food and Nutrition Research Council also suffers from what is called “hidden hunger” or the lack of micro-nutrients in the diet and eating vegetables can help solve this.

In terms of the ability to harness the spirit of volunteerism especially among the youth, we made it a point to recruit and train volunteer youth promoters who go from communities to communities to recruit youths to start gardening activities. In terms of creativity and innovation, we promote what is called hydrophonics or soil-less gardening, which means that the roots of the plants get the fertilizer directly from the water-based fertilizer solution. Another innovation we already mentioned is the use of recycled materials such as sacks and containers as garden materials and collecting organic matter in the house as fertilizer.

In terms of sustainability and effective use of resources, we focus on the use of open-pollinated seed varieties which can be matured and re-use again for the next planting season. In this way, the youth is not dependent on seed companies but is able to sustain their initiative. We encouraged them also to start small-scale vegetable processing activities and sell their organic vegetable menus and products to neighborhood markets.

The target area are 5 barangays in Ormoc City