Posted by: alcantarafoundation | November 13, 2008

Habitat for Humanity, Alcantara Foundation Train Women in Masonry

MALAPATAN, Sarangani (November 13, 2008) – Mothers and daughters here are enrolled in a masonry training program called “Akay Kababaihan”, a six-day training spearheaded by the Habitat For Humanity’s EU-funded Peace Build Program.

“This is the first time we are training women in masonry,” said Benjo Besmanos, HFH’s peace and development coordinator.

The Barangays (towns) of Tuyan in Malapatan and Lumatil in Maasim are two of HFH’s peace build projects in Sarangani. Thirty women from these two towns are training from November 10-16 at the Tuyan town hall compound.

Two decades ago, Tuyan and Lumatil were the sites of fighting between government and rebel Moro forces.

HFH targets four key result areas in their peace build projects: to build homes, establish partnerships with the barangay, provide livelihood and maintain sanitation in the HFH community.

“We do not build only houses. We help build communities in some of our poorest barangays all over the country,” Besmanos said.

“We would rather build our own house than pay for the costly labor,” Michelle Harid, a 29 year-old participant, said.

Kung kaya ni mister, kaya ni misis (if the husband can do it, so can the wife),” said Annie Juan.

Ricardo Marin, a trainer from the Technical Education Skills and Development Authority, said the women will go through a TESDA-standardized examination after the training and receive a certificate of competency.

Tuyan’s unfinished community center will b

e the site of hands-on training in jalousie installation and flooring.

The Provincial Government’s Kalinaw Sarangani Unit takes charge of the community organizing component in Habitat’s Peace Build projects in the province.

In July 2008, the Alcantara Foundation signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Kalinaw Sarangani and Habitat for Humanity to support enterprise development projects in Habitat’s five Peace Build project sites.

For this training program, AF provides food and transportation for the participants.

HFH has helped build 17,000 houses to date. It also builds schools and community centers in partnerships to transform lives beyond shelter.

Among the Muslim and Blaan traditions, wives do more of the household chores than their husbands.

As skilled workers accredited by TESDA, women can bring in more income for their families. Habitat hopes to employ these women in their ongoing Peace Build projects. (Alcantara Foundation, with a report from the Sarangani Public Information Office)

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