SOLARES Team attends the Solar PV Mainstreaming Project Joint Meeting

The SOLARES project staff headed by Mr. Jobe C. Tubigon, Project Manager, participated in the Solar PV Mainstreaming Project Joint Meeting/Window 2 Design Workshop held at Socoteco II Seminar Hall in General Santos City on February 26, 2019. The purpose of the workshop was to review the Solar Home System (SHS) or Photovoltaic (PV) Mainstreaming Window I implementation experience in Mindanao and identify lessons learned to simplify and improve SHS Window II implementation. PV Mainstreaming is a Department of Energy (DoE) initiative, supported by the World Bank’s Access to Sustainable Energy in the Philippines (ASEP) Programme.

Electric Cooperatives (ECs) presented their Window I experiences on the preparation, procurement, marketing, installation & verification phases. The group were also able to brainstorm together and complement actions to improve its mechanics for Window II.  It was also an opportunity for Mahintana to harmonize the SHS technical design/specifications, the target areas and sustainability mechanisms of PVM with the SOLARES project.

World Bank Consultant Mr. Ian Driscall presented the Renewable Energy for Rural Electrification (RE4RE) system, a GIS platform developed to strengthen the impact of electrification projects fostering access to electrical services. The platform makes information available to aid in decision making on energy-related projects and monitoring the progress of ongoing projects.

The attendees were key staff and officers from different Electric Coops (ECs) namely: SUKELCO, FIBECO, COTELCO, Socoteco II, DASURECO and BUSECO. Also present were representatives from the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), Yamog organization, National Electrification Administration (NEA) and Peace and Equity Foundation (PEF).

SOLARES Project facilitated Meeting with DoE, World Bank and EU Delegation

Strengthening Off-grid Lighting with Appropriate Renewable Energy Solutions (SOLARES) Project, a 3-year EU-funded project in partnership with Peace and Equity Foundation (PEF), facilitated the Coordination and Harmonization Meeting held at Hotel Esse, Davao City on February 21, 2019. Among the attendees are Ms. Carol Maningo from EU Delegation, Mr. Ian Driscall from World Bank, Mr. Douglas Liner from the Association of Structural Engineers of the Philippines (ASEP) and Ms. Shunie Pearl Palacios from PEF. Also present were representatives and management staff from the Department of Energy (DoE), MINDA, SUKELCO and SURECO. The meeting was an avenue for stakeholders to share solar-related project experiences and for Mahintana to harmonize initiatives to implement SOLARES Project successfully.

SOLARES Project Manager Mr. Jobe C. Tubigon presented the target areas and beneficiaries, the project framework, the solar home system (SHS) design options, and the project implementation plan. Discussions included concerns such as the target areas’ accessibility, the SHS specification options, the livelihood programs, electrification, the procurement processes, the installation of the solar load vending stations, and the sustainability of the project. With the inputs given by the group, Mahintana noted replicable existing systems and will consult EU for major amendments in the project concept. EU Programme Officer Ms. Carol Maningo stated that the project may be overwhelming, yet, it can be beneficial to Mahintana, and the partners, esp. the beneficiaries. DoE Director Mr. Mario Marasigan encouraged the body to work together for the total electrification of the off-grid in Region 12 and ARMM through the provision of SHS.

UEWMPC Celebrates its 27th Anniversary through a Tree Growing Activity

In celebration of the Unified Engineering Workers MPC (UEWMPC) 27th Anniversary with the theme “Save a Tree, Plant a Tree and Grow a Tree: For a Cleaner, Greener and Healthier Community”, UEWMPC held a tree growing activity at 108F Field gully, Brgy. Maligo, Polomolok, South Cotabato on February 2, 2019. A total of 500 hills of Bamboo and assorted forest and fruit trees were planted along the field gully and at the perimeter area of the hill beside the gully. 250 bayug bamboo  were planted at the barren area at least 5 meters away from the gully bank while the forest and fruit trees (acle, hagakhak and guyabano) were planted at the perimeter area of the compound. Monthly maintenance will be conducted by the coop’s assigned personnel.

Mahintana Presents the SOLARES Project during the Official Launch of Grants Awarded under EU-ASEP Call for Proposals

As one of the seven grant awardees of the European Union Access to Sustainable Energy in the Philippines (EU-ASEP) Call for Proposals (CfP), Mahintana Foundation, Inc., presented the SOLARES Project during the official launching of the grants awarded under EU-ASEP CfP on January 30, 2019 at Waterfront Insular Hotel, Davao City. Mr. Martiniano L. Magdolot, President & CEO, Mr. Jobe C. Tubigon, Program Manager, and Mr. Roel Ian Blanker, Project Manager, represented Mahintana during the event. Mr. Jobe C Tubigon presented the SOLARES project on behalf of Mahintana.

Prior to the presentation of grant awards, Asec. Redentor E. Delola of the Department of Energy (DOE), provided the welcome remarks during the opening session. He thanked EU for its support to renewable energy through ASEP which has become a vital partner of DOE to attain its goal of 100% electrification by 2022. Mr. Enrico Strampelli, Head of the Development Cooperation of the EU Delegation to the Philippines, shared a message of support on behalf of the EU delegation. He said there were at least 73 applications in the competitive EU-ASEP Call for Proposals which had proposed sustainable renewable energy solutions in the remote areas of the Philippines, particularly Mindanao. Of the 73 applications, only 7 were selected based on their feasibility and sustainability mechanisms.  Mr. Willy Hick, Programme Office, Development Cooperation Section, EU Delegation to the Philippines, provided the overview of EU-ASEP Program. He shared that when you have a partner like DOE that speaks with so much enthusiasm and commitment in the ASEP program – that’s the EU wants in all their development programs. After the overview, each of the 6 Projects awarded under the EU-ASEP CfP were presented. After the presentations of the awarded projects, Asec. Romeo Montenegro, Deputy Executive Director, MINDA, shared the updates on the Mindanao Power Development Program including the Mindanao Power Outlook.

In the morning session, Mahintana also participated in the consultation and validation workshop on the program framework for Sustaining Peace and Accelerating Socio-economic Development in Mindanao.

BLGU San Isidro conducts Tree Growing with Mahintana

As part of their humanitarian services and environmental awareness campaign, the BLGU – San Isidro, conducted a tree growing activity in partnership with Mahintana Foundation, Inc. at Prk. Lower Matibay Riverside, Brgy. San Isidro, General Santos City on January 29, 2019. A total of 1,000 bamboo hills were planted at the mentioned site. 25 participants from Integrated Barangay Affairs (IBA), 4Ps beneficiaries, BLGU – San Isidro staffs, and Drug Surrenderees enjoined the said activity. BLGU San Isidro have signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with the quarry operators in the vicinity to take part in the maintenance of their adopted area periodically and report to MFI the status of the plants.

FMRC Chapters Conduct Tree Growing

As part of their humanitarian services and environmental awareness campaign, the Family Mix Rider Club (FMRC) – Polomolok, Koronadal City, and General Santos City Chapters, conducted a tree growing activity in partnership with Mahintana Foundation, Inc. at Riverside, Prk. Dignadice, Brgy. Poblacion, Polomolok, on January 27, 2019. A total of 100 bamboo hills were planted at the mentioned site. 26 FMRC members from the three chapters participated the activity. FMRC agreed to designate a monitoring team to maintain their adopted area periodically and report to MFI the status of the plants.

Mahintana invites EU Delegates to Conduct Orientation on Contracts

To address the financial concerns with the implementation of the EU-funded projects of Mahintana Foundation, Inc. and its partners, an Orientation on EU Financial and Contractual Policies and Procedures was conducted on January 24-25, 2019 at The Pinnacle Hotel & Suites, Davao City. It was attended by 46 participants from Mahintana, Peace & Equity Foundation (PEF), MINCODE, Kasilak, AADC, PHILDHRRA, and Yamog Renewable Energy Development Group Inc. (Yamog). The 2-day activity aims for the EU grant beneficiaries the common understanding on the EU policies and was facilitated by RESOURCEGov Project Manager Mr. Roel Ian P. Blanker.

Mahintana and SOLARES Project Admin & Finance Officer Ms. Liza D. Hora acknowledged team leaders PEF Program Manager Mr. Omar Salvo, MINCODE Ms. Raizsa Mae Anayatin, and Yamog Program Manager Porterio R. Jabla who introduced their team to the body. Ms. Hora welcomed the EU Delegation to the Philippines Programme Officer Ms. Caroline “Carol” Maningo and Contracts & Finance Officer Ms. Michelin “Chie” Alvarez. Mahintana President & CEO Mr. Martiniano L. Magdolot gave the opening message expressing the combination of excitement and apprehension in implementing two (2) projects funded by EU. He thanked the funding donor for the continued support and trust to Mahintana and hopes to keep its credibility in running the projects. Mr. Magdolot introduced the members of the SOLARES and RESOURCEGov 2 Projects. Ms. Maningo gave a message of support to the grant beneficiaries, encouraging them to take time in understanding EU’s policies. After the expectation check and presentation of the activity overview by Mahintana Operations Manager and SOLARES Project Manager Mr. Jobe C. Tubigon,  Ms. Alvarez started the discussion of the Implementation of Grants Contracts by Beneficiaries. The participants were able to ask relevant questions which were answered by Ms. Alvarez during the course of the presentation. Questions about cash counterpart, exchange rates, procurement procedures, and 60,000 EUR limit support to the third parties were among the concerns raised. Ms. Maningo discussed the two required reports and the deadlines. On Day 2, a recap was conducted, as well as, more discussions and clarifications were made by the participants. The body was divided to two for the breakout sessions to discuss specific concerns with the EU officers. Mr. Magdolot closed the activity saying that the nervousness did not put out the fire and passion to help the depressed communities esp. in the GIDA (geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas).

 

BLGU Poblacion Polomolok Celebrates its 79th Foundation Anniversary with Tree Growing Activity

In celebration of 79th Foundation Anniversary and 11th Malambuon Festival, the BLGU Poblacion, Polomolok conducted a tree growing activity in partnership with LGU Polomolok, Dole Philippines, Inc., and Mahintana Foundation, Inc. at Riverside, Prk. Malinawon, Brgy. Poblacion, Polomolok, on November 24, 2018. A total of 300 hills of bamboo were planted at the mentioned site. 124 individuals participated the activity. The BLGU – Poblacion, Polomolok agreed to monitor their area periodically and report to MFI the status of the plants. Also, the BLGU have designated an individual to monitor the area which will receive monthly grocery supplies from the BLGU.

BLGU Dadiangas West conducts Tree Growing Activity

A tree growing activity at Silway – Fatima Riverside, Brgy. Dadiangas West, Gensan on November 21, 2018. A total of 300 hills of bamboo were planted at the mentioned site. 62 Persons Who Used Drugs (PWUD) of Brgy. Dadiangas West participated the activity as part of their “Cash-for-Work” Program initiatives. The BLGU agreed to monitor their area periodically and report to Mahintana the status of the plants. Also, the BLGU have designated an individual to monitor the area which will receive monthly grocery supplies from the BLGU.

Philippine College of Physicians conducts Tree Growing Activity

At least 12 medical doctors, staff and interns from Howard Hubbard Memorial Hospital and Bontuyan Medical Hospital spearheaded by Philippine College of Physicians planted 150 hills of bamboo at Field 103, Prk. Dignadice, Poblacion, Polomolok on Nov. 8, 2018. The activity was done in celebration of the Annual National Day of Rising (House Bill 4981) and to protect Ma. Rosa Creek from further erosion.