30 May 2017, Tibaguin Elementary School, Hagonoy, Bulacan. As a continued effort of the One Child, One Tree initiative founded by Natalia Sali (also FEED Ambassador) – a Philippine citizen from Bulacan residing in and fundraising from London to help restore the environment – this Mangrove Reforestation & Conservation Training took place at Tibaguin Elementary School, in Hagonoy, Bulacan – as Tibaguin, being a coastal community, is the first hit during the rainy season of persistent typhoons and floods half of the year.
True enough, during the 8am-1pm training session with 8 barangay (village) captains from Hagonoy, as well as teaching staff from Tibaguin Elementary School and other local environmental leaders, the rising floodwaters rose 2 feet within 1 hour, leaving local residents literally wading to get to work; kids swimming to schools to collect supplies for their new year; and other residents transporting food supplies to market floating on makeshift boats.
Around the same time last year, the Governor said that “Maynilad is directly using Ipo dam as their sub reservoir thus keeping its water level at 100 meters or just one meter away from its spilling level of 101 meters…. “This is why Ipo dam cannot make pre-emptive releases before a typhoon hits and are forced to discharged excess water into the already swollen Bustos dam which in turns are obliged to release heavy volume of waters that causes flooding in the low lying coastal towns of Hagonoy and Calumpit,” Alvarado said.
The governor also suggests the creation of more mini dams in Nueva Ecija and Candaba swamp to prevent flash floods in coastal areas and make it a source of potable surface water and irrigation.
“The long term solutions to address the flood problems in Bulacan and other parts of Central Luzon are underway but this will take some time and the rainy season is just around the corner. There will be floods but it can be lessened if dam protocols are properly observed and the discharge of dam waters is properly coordinated with the Provincial Government thru the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office,” Alvarado said.
He also suggests to presumptive President Rodrigo Duterte to place the right people who have the knowledge on the effective water management, to handle the administration of the dams.
“I know that the new leadership will help the people of Bulacan in addressing the perennial flooding in the province,” the governor ended.
The mangrove training was organized by One Child One Tree founder Natalia Sali, represented by:
- Volunteers and team leads, Jan Philip Cabrera (pictured above) and Catherine Usi, who together mobilized volunteer expert speakers and practitioners;
- Victor Cruz (speaker), head of the Hagonoy Fishers and Farmers Cooperative;
- Ronaldo P. Bernandino (speaker), Aquaculturist II Provincial Agriculture Office Bulacan
- Jose Jimmy San Jose (speaker), Taliptip Ecopark
- Gelo and Catherine Usi (ECO-RANGERS);
- Effie Santos (Tibaguin ES head); and
- Anne Marie Mananquil Bakker and Diane Penales (speakers and facilitators from FEED).
Some of the slides presented during the above presentations are included in the photo collage below, and will be published here shortly.
Concluding the training, the Hagonoy Fishers Cooperative, Taliptip Ecopark and FEED each dontated 1,000 mangrove propagules for a total of 3,000 to establish the first mangrove nursery at Tibaguin Elementary School, as a sign of immediate support to the efforts of the community – which also established their first People’s Organization to ensure the mangrove forest will be built.
The nursery will also serve as a community nursery to help local residents of Tibaguin continue to plant the great wall of mangroves for Bulacan.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text +63 (0)917 552 4722.
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