2 July 2023, Sukol Bukid, San Sebastian, Hagonoy. On Sunday, July 2, 2023, women, and men members of the Hagonoy Fish Farmers Producers Cooperative (HFFPC) San Sebastian chapter, led by Mr. Ireneo Pascual, Sr. or better known as ‘Ka Macho’, planted one thousand mangroves along the riverbanks in Hagonoy, Bulacan.
The planters did not mind the early morning heat and took advantage of the good weather, in high spirits. It was difficult to plant on riverbanks as the surface are not flat (rather sloped), but they persevered. One notices that despite their tiredness, the fisherfolks always manage to make light of the situation, sharing jokes and laughter throughout as they welcomed the chance to be a part of this project. One of them quoted:
“Huu! sobrang init! Saktong sakto pag naglakihan na mga tanim na to lalamig na dito”, with others saying in agreement and so memorably, “Kaya natin to, para sa atin naman to.” (Tr.: Oh! It’s so hot! When these trees get older, they will be able to make this area cooler…We can do it, it’s for us!)
The planting finished after more than five hours of travel, site preparing (clearning, spacing and hole digging), followed by planting, quality control and clearing again of any debris potential coming up during high tide. The fisherfolks were exhausted but were all smiles upon completing.
This planting event was fully financed by FEED – in response to the 1,000 trees sponsored by Rakso-Biogenic in 2018, planting of 1,000 mangrove seedlings in Hagonoy, Bulacan last 2nd of June 2018 (thanks to Biogenic Alcohol, a leading brand of Cosmetique Asia Corporation in the Philippines, under which Biogenic Alcohol is managed and represented by Rakso CT, Biogenic’s marketing partner).
FEED carried out an on-demand monitoring and reporting event during the last week of June 2023 – on request of Rakso CT, finding out that the initial 1,000 mangrove trees were mostly affected by the dredging and dyke building of the private fish pond on which it was planted. The 1,000 trees were devastated by so-called development in the area, in response to the international airport being built in Bulacan*. Additionally, this restoration planting was fully coordinated by long-time FEED partners, “One Child, One Tree” (OCOT), a volunteer-run community group in Hagonoy, Bulacan, organized by its founder FEED Ambassador Natalia Sali.
Great Wall of (a Million) Mangroves in Bulacan
Planting is an important part of the mangrove reforestation program in Hagonoy but equally important is the monitoring and nurturing of the mangroves. The fisherfolks from this community have agreed to look after the newly planted mangroves. Since 2019, Hagonoy local communities have been engaged in participatory monitoring, vigilantly reporting illegal activities to OCOT volunteers who then report those to the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR). To prevent further violations, the local government coordinated with the coastal barangay councils to intensify information-sharing with people. OCOT then launched information-sharing and awareness-raising activities so that the communities are aware of the local ordinances about protecting the mangroves.
The increasing sea water level, surges of water and wind during Habagat season, and frequent flooding in Hagonoy affect people’s social and economic well-being. The mangrove reforestation program hopes to contribute to lessen the impact of those natural hazards on people’s life.
GPS Coordinates & Images (Sukol Bukid, San Sebastian, Hagonoy, Bulacan, Philippines)
- Biogenic’s 3rd Planting Establishes Food Forest for Laguna Communities in Need (20 Oct 2019)
- Biogenic’s 1,000 Native Philippine (Mangrove) Trees Topped-up by Hagonoy Mayor’s 1,000 Commitment (2 June 2018)
- Saving Trees, Saves Bees: Biogenic Alcohol via Rakso “Lend-a-Hand” to Restore a Vital Part of Our Ecosystem (8 July 2017)
How Trees Secretly Talk to Each Other (BBC News)
Trees talk and share resources right under our feet, using a fungal network nicknamed the Wood Wide Web. Some plants use the system to support their offspring, while others hijack it to sabotage their rivals.
Join us in helping reverse the Earth’s “hothouse climate” tipping point. Plant plant plant.
Tree-Planting with FEED
View original video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CPC29Rwr6Pg
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