DOLE allots P16-M for Zamboanga livelihood project
By R. G. Antonet Go/PNA
ZAMBOANGA CITY — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has allocated some PHP16 million for the implementation of Project Helping Others Prosper Economically (Project HOPE) in the Zamboanga Peninsula.
DOLE-9 Director Ofelia Domingo said Project HOPE has 500 beneficiaries in the city alone, mostly workers affected by the close season for sardine fishing.
Domingo said the beneficiaries are currently employed as nursery workers at the Zamboanga Special Economic Zone and Freeport (Zamboecozone) agricultural area in Sitio San Ramon, Barangay Talisayan, this city.
The workers also plant high-value crops, such as coffee, cacao, bamboo, rubber, and vegetables on a 12-hectare area provided by the Zamboecozone.
“To the workers, there’s hope. Project hope is for them if they believe in the project, they will reap the fruits of their labor later,” Domingo said.
Mary Jean Gonzaga, a beneficiary of Project HOPE, underscored the importance of the program in providing an alternative source of income while she is temporarily unemployed.
The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources implemented the close fishing from December 1, 2018 to March 1, 2019 to allow the sardines to spawn.