Eduardo “Ed” E. De Paz, a beneficiary of CARP from Brgy. Wasian, Rosario, Agusan del Sur had endured the hardships in life: “I sacrificed for my family. I stopped going to college so I could help my father tend our farm so that my elder siblings could finish schooling.”
He was a young, frail boy who, amidst busy schedule in his elementary days would hurriedly go home to chop banana stalks/trunks to feed their swine’s. He also helped his mother do some household chores after feeding their swine. He would likewise wake up early on weekends to help his father cultivate their small rice fields.
Ed vividly recalled that it was the hardships in life that motivated his young mind to work harder to improve their lives. In the late 1970’s their family had experienced floods, storms and other natural calamities that struck their place resulting to damaged crops and failure in rice farming.
But life for Ed and his family must go on. He became a recipient of 1.8306 hectare farm from the Department of Agrarian Reform. He planted the area with rice using organic farming where they utilized “Guano” or Bird manure to make the soil fertile and healthy. Having issued the title gave Ed a new hope and security. With their sales in palay, he was able to buy other farm lots where he planted bananas, coconut and falcata trees. Hand in hand with his wife, they were able to send their children to school.
Since he wanted to further help his fellow “Wasianons”, he joined politics by running as a Sangguniang Bayan member and served for two terms. Currently, he holds the post of Barangay Captain of Wasian of Rosario where he later won as the president of the Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) of Rosario, ADS Chapter.
Being a Barangay Captain, he was able to facilitate and bring funds for the farmers. “The subsidy from the government is of great help for us”, one farmer said. “A sack of palay seedling costs P 1,200.00 but we only have to pay P 600.00 because of the subsidy from the government,” a farmer from Wasian stated.
“I only finished my high school education but to me, learning does not stop there,” Ed quips. To enhance his knowledge, he attended seminars and trainings some of which were Eco-Solid Waste Management, Organic Rice Farming and others.
“It was my father who taught me so much that motivates me,” he said. “He would gather us all his children during night time and motivate us to work harder and become better persons. He taught us to love the land we possess and cultivate it for it was thru these lands that we survived. To us, a piece of land is very helpful. We should value and nurture it, so that it will also serve us back. I am so thankful to the DAR for making me one of the beneficiaries of the land we till.”
Eddie has three children, a nurse who now works in Australia, a 3rd year social work student in Holy Cross Davao City and a 2nd year commerce student.
“I encouraged my children to finish their education because it is the only treasure that cannot be stolen from a person. I did not finish my schooling, but I would make it a legacy that my children and the coming generations will be able to finish their education. I have also instilled in their minds to love the lands that we have so that the lands will also love us back,” Ed hopefully stated.