ISEA President Marie Lisa Dacanay speaks about the context of social enterprise in the Philippines and its importance for the development of the agricultural value chain during the virtual learning sessions for DA officials.
DILIMAN, Quezon City, June 7 – To accelerate the growth of Filipino agriculture, the Department of Agriculture (DA) has partnered with the Institute for Social Entrepreneurship in Asia (ISEA) to promote social entrepreneurship among farmers, youth and other stakeholders .
ISEA is a learning and action network set up by social enterprise and social enterprise resource institutions, as well as academics, to catalyze knowledge creation, capacity development and building social entrepreneurship movements in Asia.
In a virtual ceremony on April 26, 2021, Attorney General William Dar and ISEA President Marie Lisa Dacanay sealed the partnership by signing an agreement. As part of the agreement, the DA will support the programs and projects to promote agricultural enterprises and social entrepreneurship through the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI).
ATI will also work with ISEA to offer capacity building and other initiatives for farmers, fishermen, youth and other agricultural workers. Agricultural innovations are promoted as part of the commitment to develop an integrative, fair, resilient and sustainable value chain in agriculture.
In order to inform DA officials and agency managers about this project and to have a common and common understanding of the importance of social entrepreneurship in the agricultural value chain, two virtual learning sessions were carried out. Dr. Lisa Dacanay gave an introduction to social entrepreneurship, a presentation on the perspective and tools of the development of the value chain in the agricultural sector and a brief overview of the law on social entrepreneurship.
According to Dr. Dacanay social enterprises were founded in Asia, particularly the Philippines, in response to the ongoing development crisis and continue to face the challenge of lack of funds. She emphasized the need for innovation for these companies to achieve their social goals without compromising their financial sustainability.
DA Undersecretary and Chief of Staff Leocadio S. Sebastian and ATI Vice Director Rosana P. Mula spoke for Agriculture Minister William Dar in the first and second session.
In his message, Foreign Minister Dar acknowledged that integrating social entrepreneurship into the agricultural value chain can be an effective step in improving livelihoods and further responding to urgent problems in the sector. He stressed that farmers, fishermen, youth and other agricultural workers need to be taught social entrepreneurship and that their skills need to be improved in order to become social farmers.
“With more social agribusinesses in the country, we are one step closer to our vision for a food-safe and resilient Philippines with prosperous farmers and fishermen,” said Foreign Minister Dar.
DA top level management consisting of state secretaries and deputy secretaries took part in the first learning unit, while DA service and program directors, DA regional managers and ATI regional directors, department heads and section heads took part in the second session. These activities practically took place on May 31, 2021. (CMVillorente / DA-ATI)