ERDB Director (left photo) visits the training as the participants (right photo) work on bamboo pavilion in Padre Burgos, Quezon on December 2, 2020.

The pandemic has brought fears and economic struggles to our country that is why the Urban and Biodiversity Research, Development and Extension Center (UBRDEC) in partnership with Armed Forces of the Philippines Southern Luzon Command (AFP-SolCom) curated the Kaalamang Kabuhayan Para sa Wastong Yaman Natin or KAWAYAN Academy.

The KAWAYAN Academy aims to promote economic enhancement and biodiversity conservation thru bamboo propagation and production of different bamboo-made materials. This project is a collaborative effort with Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Department of Agriculture (DA), Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Provincial Office of Quezon, Local Government Unit of Padre Burgos, Quezon, Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Science and Technology Forest Products Research and Development Institute (DOST-FPRDI), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), ERDB-UBRDEC and AFP SolCom.

Training was conducted on November 17 to December 11, 2020 whereas 25 participants were selected. They are displaced workers who have been affected by the pandemic and has psychological issues due to the struggles caused by the country’s current situation. These participants were educated on different bamboo technologies. As one of the proponents of KAWAYAN Academy, UBRDEC Head Gregorio E. Santos discussed the inventory and collection of harvestable culms. He also demonstrated the proper harvesting method of kawayan tinik.

ERDB Director Henry A. Adornado showed his support to this project and visited the site in Padre Burgos, Quezon on December 4, 2020. The Director observed the conduct of training and encouraged the UBRDEC to continually serve the people of Quezon province. Director Adornado believes that with the collective efforts of the government agencies this activity will be a success.

AFP SolCom Commander Lt. Gen. Antonio G. Parlade Jr. (left) as he gives the Kapayapaan Award to UBRDEC Head Gregorio E. Santos Jr. (right) in recognition for his valuable contributions in maintaining the peace and order in the Province of Quezon on January 7, 2021.

Because of the initiatives of UBRDEC and its active provision of technical assistance, Center Head Santos was recognized by the AFP. He was the lone recipient of Kapayapaan Award during the celebration of the AFP’s founding anniversary on January 7, 2021. This recognition was given to Center Head Santos for his efforts on KAWAYAN Academy which has a valuable contribution in maintaining the peace and order in the Province of Quezon.

Center Head Santos shared that UBRDEC commits to continually provide technical assistance and share appropriate technologies to contribute in the environmental protection and conservation and at the same time alleviate poverty to achieve sustainable environment and development. Ann Valerie V. Gillado, UBRDEC