DAR Celebrates Women's Month For 2017

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news national 1 pix 1 march 6 2017If there is an event that is eagerly anticipated year in and year out it is the celebration of the Women’s Month. The Month of March will mark the several events and the DAR Compound will once again be a picture of abundance and festivity on the last week of the month in honour of our women.
Agri-Fair and Food Festival- It does not come as a surprise as the festivities that marks each celebration is accompanied by a display of a variety of fresh farm produce and its by-products.  While one usually enjoys a plateful of tocino and eggs together with a cup of coffee.  This week, you can’t help but have an helping of organic brown, red or black rice with the re-knowned Zambales smoked “tinapa” with picked atchara from Rizal. The smoked or dried fish, neatly arranged in transparent packages, with no signs of busted tummies and artificial colouring agents emits a scent of goodness and freshness. You can also choose from an array of pickled fruits.  Pampanga atchara is sweeter than that of Rizal and other localities.  Dairy products, green, yellow, red and velvety Baguio vegetables and the good for the heath fibrous yams from Nueva Vizcaya  and their by-products.  Sweets are a sure hit and we emptied our pockets after a whole day of intermittent rounds. Expect this come March 27 till the 31st.

The culinary mettle of each Bureau shall be tested to the core.  It has been ages since the DAR has involved all the offices to a fanfare that will foment DAR’s spirit de corps.  Each bureau is assigned a table where they bring out their best menu to the delight of darting tasters who will be treated to a buffet of regional cuisines covering breakfast, lunch, dinner and of course “minatamis” and “kakanin” for dessert.  It is an avenue to advertise their talents and put on-sale whatever food stuff they had mustered.  If you happen to wear lavender, your food taken on a particular time is on the house because it is women’s month, and lavender or lilac is the official colour for women.

Lest we forget that the Department’s policy direction is to protect farmers and ensure their security of tenure, promote their rights and welfare, contribute to rural development and help ensure food security.  Each DAR-hosted agri-fair is a clear reminder that the farmer makes available the food in our plate.  Thus, we need to passionately serve and protect them and of course patronize their produce.

Working in our desks for the daily grind is nerve wrecking with deadlines to work on to. Great events that spruce up our imagination seldom happen because tragic news dominate the airwaves, the net and the broad sheet. So create your own good news!   And the news is that on March 28, Sec. Ka Paeng will have a dilaogue with rural women, and on March 29  there will be a “Kapihan ng mga Kababaihan para sa Kaunlaran ng Kababaihan”. Women employees can freely discuss women’s concerns over a cup of coffee with successful women officials.

Health and Wellness- Those amongst us who fervently neglects visiting our doctors to ensure we get a glimpse of our state of health are carried in a wave of anxious patients wanting to get their BPs, sugar and cholesterol.  Eye refraction, bone scanning, feet and facial massage and other therapy are all available without need of an appointment, and the results released on the very day.  What a life!

news national 1 pix 2 march 6 2017On a serious note, the new administration, through this year’s celebration seeks to ensure that man and woman will continue to be partners in the pursuit of the country’s  economic, social, cultural and political developments  anchored on the commitment of “malasakit at pagbabago” or True Compassion and Real Change.  Thus, for this year the Philippine Commisiion on Women (PCW) came up with the theme, “We Make Change Work for Women”.  

Highlight of the national celebration will be the Women’s Summit dubbed as “CHANGE: A Women’s Summit” which will be held from March 30-31, 2017 at the PICC is a gathering of stakeholders which includes agencies, local executives, NGOs, and the private sector, on the implementation of the Magna Carta of Women (MCW) and related GAD mandates.  It will be an avenue for participants to discuss and share the good practices adopted and also the gaps and challenges experiences in its implementation. More importantly,  the objective is to solicit and strengthen the commitment of these stakeholders relative to the MCW’s mandate. Undersecretary Rosalina Bistoyong  will head the DAR panel.

In compliance with President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to fully implement the Magna Carta for Women with respect to each agency’s mandate, fora on women shall focus on the rights of rural women farmers and their rights.  An orientation workshop of DAR Regional Women Desk Officers and the Gender and Development (GAD) focal point person aims to strengthen DAR’s mechanism in providing services to rural womenfolk and promote its Violence Against Women (VAW)  advocacy.  Information and education materials will be made available, especially to women farmers, throughout the duration of the celebration. Truly celebrations can be an avenue in strengthening the DAR community.

Lately, Gabriela and other broad based women’s group, which launched the One Billion Rising (OBR) flash mob dance, has successfully asked the management for DAR personnel to attend and participate in their rendition of the dance as an expression of resistance against gender based violence, and other socio-political objectives instead of the conventional type of protests which are marked by picket signs and shouting.  

And while the Central Office’s plate is full of these activities, across the nation in DAR field offices, there is an ongoing nationwide celebration of women’s month.  They are encouraged to support and join the PCW sponsored “We Make Change: Women Inspiring Women Series (March 1, 8, 15) in Cebu City, Metro Manila, and in Davao City.  Schedules and other activities may be downloaded through the PCW website: http://www.pcw.gov.ph for details. (Althea R. Oliveros)

#DAR4Farmers #Land4Farmers #PartnerForChange #WomenMakeChange