The Stone Dike Technology: Innovation that Helps Mitigate Soil Erosion in the Gullies

Mahintana Foundation, Inc., continues to think outside the box in the conservation, preservation and protection of the environment particularly around the Mt. Matutum Protective Landscape (MMPL). To mitigate the soil erosion that usually occur in the plantation gullies, the organization innovated a technology that uses indigenous materials found in the locality such as large rocks, used fishnets from the fishing industries in General Santos City, and malabago trees, thus, the birth of the stone dike technology. The technology was purposely constructed in scoured gully banks to prevent their further damage.

The ceremonial construction of the stone dike was conducted on August 10, 2018 at Gully 116A/101C, Upper Klinan, Polomolok, South Cotabato as one of the activities of the 41st anniversary celebration of Mahintana and SRC. From its construction to present, the stone dikes were able to allow sedimentation that increased the vegetation around the dikes and stabilized the gully banks by protecting them from further scouring. Other stone dikes were constructed in 110A/109C Cannery and 113C/112B/113B Polo.

RESOURCEGov orients the BLGF 12 about the Project

RESOURCEGov Project Manager Mr. Roel Ian P. Blanker oriented the Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF) 12 about the project to forge a partnership with the said government agency on May 17, 2019 at BLGF Office, Koronadal City. It was attended by the 14 participants (Male 9, Female 5) including the BLGF 12 Acting Regional Director Mr. Jeany T. Tedera and his staff.

BLGF, being the source of the Statement of Receipts and Expenditures (SREs), Mr. Blanker focused the presentation of the use of Qlik System that can generate interactive graphs and data visualizations. Seeing the Qlik-generated graphs using the SRE data from the said office, Mr. Tedera expressed his interest to adopt the system and shared that he has heard of Qlik through the Municipal Treasurer’s Office of Lake Sebu. Mr. Blanker suggested that the data collection from each LGU in the region can be done through the use of ODK.

RESOURCEGov trains the DILG-PDMU R12 on ODK and Qlik

DILG 12, the associate partner of RESOURCEGov Project, requested the project team to conduct the ODK and Qlik Systems for the Project Development Management Unit (PDMU) on May 15-16, 2019 at the DILG 12 Conference Room, Regional Center, Koronadal City. The 2-day activity was attended by 30 (Male 20, Female 10) composed of personnel from various programs and projects handled by DILG such as Sagana at Ligtas na Tubig sa Lahat (SALINTUBIG), Assistance to Municipalities (AM), Conditional Matching Grant to Provinces (CGMP) and Performance Challenge Fund (PCF).  

Project Roel Ian P. Blanker facilitated the training on the monitoring tool ODK on the 1st day where participants were able make their ODK-based project monitoring forms. Impressed as the system can readily consolidate the data after collection, the PDMU staff expressed their excitement to use the ODK in their project monitoring activities. On the other hand, the participants appreciated the Qlik System as an interactive data visualization tool for the data collected from ODK. The PDMU was able to present their outputs after the workshops.

SOLARES ODK Profiling of potential Member-Consumers in Maasim, Sarangani

As part of the EU-funded SOLARES project’s social preparation, a survey/profiling for each of the 5,000 off-grid households in 50 target barangays shall be conducted to validate and establish the individual socio-economic profile, the willingness to participate in the project, and capacity to pay of the potential household beneficiaries. The survey results will serve as baselines to measure future project impact at the household/community level and to help determine/map out the actual location/coordinates of the potential household beneficiaries.

On May 2-14, 2019, the SOLARES project team conducted the ODK profiling in its target benefeciaries in 11 Brgys. in Maasim, Sarangani Province namely: (a) Kablacan; (b) Bales; (c) Lumasal; (d) Amsipit; (e) Kamanga; (f) Daliao; (g) Kanalo; (h) Pananag; (I) Lumatil; (j) Colon; and (k) Nomoh.

Prior the actual profiling, the project team together with nine (9) enumerators conduct Brgy. Courtesy Calls to the Sitio/Purok Leaders to inform them of the purpose of the activity & to allow the team to conduct profiling. Every enumerator received an umbrella and powerbank which they can use as they will be profiling scattered or distant households using android tablets.

The enumerators were residents in Maasim, Sarangani and were all familiar with the local conditions, the people, and cultural sensitivities of the target areas. For 13 consecutive days, they were able to endure the scorching heat and trekked arduous areas, typically on foot & motorcycle and profiled a total of 733 households. Please refer to the table below for the total number of of households profiled per Barangay.

Name of BarangayTotal # of Households Profiled
Kablcan144
Bales 127
Lumasal 119
Amsipit78
Kamanga71
Daliao51
Kanalo26
Pananag23
Lumatil16
Colon1
Nomoh 77
TOTAL733

Mahintana attends the Europe Day Celebration

The Mahintana Foundation, spearheaded by Mr. Martiniano L. Magdolot, the President & CEO graced the Europe Day Celebration held at Dusit Thani Manila, Makati, Philippines on May 9, 2019. Joining him are Mr. Jobe C. Tubigon and Mr. Roel Ian P. Blanker, the managers of the EU-funded projects of the organization and also Ms. Jean Jumilla, one of the project’s Admin and Finance Officer and Mahintana’s Accountant. The Europe Day marks the birthday of EU, a political and economic union of 28 member states that are located primarily in Europe. The event highlights the friendship and partnership of the EU and the Philippines that was attended by various government officials, civil society organizations, embassies, and EU officers & staff. This also served as an avenue for organizations involved with EU to get to know each other and exchange contacts for possible collaborations. The Europe day is also celebrated worldwide thru its delegation offices.

SOLARES Consultation Meeting with SUKELCO, SOCOTECO II & Dole Philippines, Inc.

To ensure that the Solar Home System (SHS) technical design and other implementation/procurement arrangements will be effectively and efficiently carried out, the Strengthening Off-grid Lighting with Appropriate Renewable Energy Solutions (SOLARES) project facilitated a Consultation Meeting on May 3, 2019 held at Dole Kalsangi Clubhouse, Polomolok, South Cotabato. In attendance were members/management staff from Electric Coops’ SUKELCO and SOCOTECO II. Also present were Dolefil’s Directors Atty. Renato N. Alvarez and Mr. Yohei Kagikawa and DPO Manager Wilson A. Peria.  Mahintana sought the expertise of the ECs as they have experiences in implementing ASEP’s PVM Window 1 Project.

Project Manager Jobe C. Tubigon presented the SOLARES project overview, objectives, expected impact & outcomes, the SHS package and Procurement and installation timeline. His presentation also included the composition and functions of different groups such as the Technical Working Group, Technical & Financial team and the Advisory group. Additional members were added to ensure that the preparation, review & evaluation of bid documents will be in accordance to EU’s procurement standards and requirements.

The demonstration of the SHS technical specifications followed afterwards. Engr. Jay Amiel Ajoc explained the system functions, battery capacity and the load vending management scheme.

Currently, the project is conducting profiling, validation and social marketing while waiting for EU’s approval of the amendments of the contract particularly on change of SHS technical design/specs, project sites, and budget reallocation. Once approved, the posting/publication of bidding documents will follow. The group were able to share their suggestions and views to ensure that the right implementation/procurement arrangements & mechanisms will be applied.

Mahintana Foundation, Inc. in partnership with Peace and Equity Foundation, Electric Coops’ SUKELCO and SOCOTECO II is implementing the EU-funded SOLARES project for 3 years.

RESOURCEGov monitors the OGP Commitments of South Cotabato

The RESOURCEGov 2 Project convened with its Provincial LGU counterparts in the Open Government Partnership (OGP) commitments of South Cotabato on April 30, 2019. Held at the Provincial Planning and Development Office – South Cotabato, Mr. Roel Ian Blanker, the RESOURCEGov2 Project Manager facilitated the updating of Open Monitoring & Evaluation commitment. A total of 9 individuals (5 Male, 4 Female) attended the activity.

The team accomplished the following: updating of the ODK-based project monitoring forms of the province, linked the PPMC monitoring results to the RESOURCEGov 2 ODK account, integrated the website recommendations of the South Cotabato Integrity Circle, developed an ODK-based citizen satisfaction and feedback form, patterned the feedback form based on the feedback requirement of the DevLive app, and updated the official provincial government website of South Cotabato together with the Public Information Office (PIO). Aside from meeting the OGP Commitments, this activity is also a preparation to the regular meeting of the Provincial Project Monitoring Committee of South Cotabato on May 2, 2019 where Mahintana, through the project, provides technical assistance. As to date, the LITS has been installed and there is a pending staff orientation about the system due to elections. Aside from the LITS, the team agreed to schedule the setup of the livestream SP sessions as one of the deliverables of the Open Legislation commitment.

SOLARES conducts Project Orientation and Consultation Meeting with the Local MFIs

On April 24, 2019, the Strengthening Off-grid Lighting with Appropriate Renewable Energy Solutions (SOLARES) project team facilitated a Consultation Meeting/Project Orientation together with local Microfinance Institutions (MFIs)held at Dolefil Kalsangi Clubhouse, Polomolok, South Cotabato. Representatives from five (5) MFIs namely: (1) KPS-SEED; (2) MDFI; (3) Sta. Cruz MPC; (4) KIMEMCO; and (5) Bacbacan MPC were in attendance. The purpose of the activity was to present the project overview and opportunities for future partnership and to gain the full support and engagement of the local MFIs.

Through Skype video conferencing, Peace and Equity Foundation (PEF) Project Coordinator Ms. Shunie Pearl Palacion, shared about PEF’s history and overview as a development financing organization engaged in the promotion and development of social enterprises. She also talked about partnership guidelines & requirements and answered the queries and concerns of the attendees. SOLARES Project Manager presented the SOLARES project overview/framework, Solar Home System technical design/specs, operational flowchart, and project management and implementation plan. He emphasized that the MFI’s role to provide access to livelihood support to household beneficiaries of the project to help improve their income opportunities and capacity to pay for the maintenance fees of SHS systems. 

Project Officer Engr. Jose Jerry Tayactac initiated the demonstration of the Solar Home System (SHS) and explained the basic operation/installation process and explained in detail the charging process, battery capacity, prepaid loading system and the maintenance of the SHS unit.

RESOURCEGov Project Team convenes for its 6th PIT-PMT Meeting

The Project Team convened the project management and implementation teams for its 6th Joint PIT-PMT Meeting on April 23, 2019 at Park Inn by Radisson Davao, Lanang, Davao City. Thirty-three participants (Male 15, Female 18) attended including the 3 DILG Provincial Directors (PDs) from Sarangani, Compostela Valley and Surigao del Sur to discuss on the project updates and next steps of the implementation.

Facilitated by Mahintana President & CEO Mr. and Project Director Mr. Martiniano L. Magdolot, the meeting started with prayer led by PHILDHRRA Project Officer Mr. Alfredo Latasa and a safety orientation by the hotel’s safety officer. Project Manager Mr. Roel Ian P. Blanker acknowledged the participants as well as presented the admin concerns for the meeting. Each of the 3 PDs gave their welcome addresses. Compostela Valley PD Noel Duarte welcomed the participants in Davao City and shared that the LITS will be rolled out province-wide on May 23, 2019. Sarangani PD Rochelle Sero committed to promote and support the RESOURCEGov in Region 12 while Surigao del Sur PD Pedrito Alacaba thanked the project management for the implementation of the project. Mr. Blanker facilitated the reading of the summary of business arising and key agreements of previous minutes, and the discussion was actively participated by the body. For the project updated, Project Documenter Ms. Lorielyn P. Patoc presented the project accomplishments for Region 12 areas while Project Officer Ms. Myra Macla for Regions 11 & 13. Project Bookkeeper Mr. Jason Inot presented the financial updates. Mr. Blanker then presented the next steps and schedules and the key agreements.

SOLARES Project Team presents during the Maitum ABC Meeting

On April 8, 2019, the SOLARES Project Team together with SOCOTECO II SBU Representative John Tindoy joined the ABC Meeting at Maitum, Sarangani to present the SOLARES project and demonstrate the stand-alone photovoltaic system to the Brgy. Captains.

Mr. Jobe Tubigon, SOLARES Project Manager, briefly introduced the Solares project highlighting its framework, objectives and sustainability mechanism. He explained about the installation process as well as the payment scheme, where the member-consumer (MC) shall pay a monthly fee amounting to Php222 which will cover up all the maintenance, spare parts and troubleshooting of the Solar Home System (SHS) units. The overall installation process will be covered by the project with no further cost for the MC.

Mr. Tindoy together with the SOLARES project officers demonstrated and explained the basic operation of the SHS unit which includes its charging, capacity, loading system and maintenance. He also explained that the project beneficiaries will automatically become members of SOCOTECO II and are also entitled to all the benefits provided by the EC.

The barangay captains of Maitum, Sarangani showed interest and positive response in the SOLARES Project and committed to provide assistance if ever needed by the project team to help in the project implementation.