Twenty-two outstanding multipurpose cooperatives were recognized this year by the Villar SIPAG Foundation for their significant contributions in poverty reduction and economic growth in their communities.
The annual Villar SIPAG Awards on Poverty Reduction, an initiative of the Villar SIPAG (Social Institute for Poverty Alleviation and Governance) Foundation, acknowledges and rewards the good practices of cooperatives and community enterprises nationwide that help bring down incidences of poverty and spur economic developments in their covered areas.
Senator Cynthia A. Villar, director of Villar SIPAG and chairperson of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food, stressed the important role played by peoples organizations in the government’s continued fight against poverty.
“Multipurpose cooperatives help bridge the gap between communities and the government,” said Villar.
“They fill in the many shortcomings of both the local government units and the national government and work directly with affected families to improve the quality of their lives,” added Villar during the awarding ceremonies for the Top 20 multipurpose cooperatives in the country held at the Villar SIPAG offices in Las Piñas City.
The senator, along with her husband former Senate President Manny Villar, Public Works Secretary Mark Villar, Paolo, and Camille Villar led the distribution of plagues of recognition and a P250,000 cash prize each to National Capital Region-based Kapatiran-Kaunlaran Foundation Inc. and the Mission to Seafarers Philippines Family Network.
From North and Central Luzon, the Piwong Multipurpose Cooperative of Ifugao, Sarrat Namnama Multipurpose Cooperative of Ilocos Norte, San Fabian Pangasinan Council of Women Inc. Multipurpose Cooperative of Pangasinan, Magapuy Farmers Multi-Purpose Cooperative of Nueva Vizcaya, and Nueva Ecija Seed Grower Multipurpose Cooperative of Nueva Ecija were rewarded.
Also cited for their outstanding community services were the St. Jude Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Quezon Province, Kabalikat Para Sa Diyos at Bayan Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Romblon, Labo Progressive Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Camarines Norte;
Pavia Entrepreneurs Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Iloilo, Compostela Market Vendors from Cebu, Santa Barbara Katilingbanong Credit Cooperative from Siquijor and the Maripipi Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Biliran.
The foundation likewise credited the good practices of the Aurora Integrated Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Zamboanga del Sur, Malinao Community Services Multi-Purpose Cooperative from Lanao del Norte, Pantukan Chess Club Cooperative from Compostela Valley;
Davao Oriental Seed Producers from Davao, City Food Terminal Multi-Purpose Cooperative from General Santos City and Kankitap Consumers Cooperative from Sulu.
The Bohol Dairy Cooperative and the Tarlac Okra Growers Primary Multi-Purpose Cooperative were given Special Awards of P150,000 each for their poverty reduction initiatives.