Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) initiated exchanges with the women-farmers and sexual minorities for the Institute to fully mainstream gender and development (GAD) in its projects and researches.
Recently conducted in Ligao City, Albay and RTRomualdez, Agusan del Norte, the seminars highlighted mechanisms that will enhance women’s participation in agriculture and LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) sensitivities in work places.
Arlene M. Dayo, agricultural technologist and farmer-woman in Goa, Camarines Sur, said that women in rural areas are active economic players who take jobs as landless workers, traders of agricultural and fishery products, and manufacturing entrepreneurs.
“Women-farmers must move up to the agricultural value chain. [She shouldn’t be involved in production alone, but must also improve her skills on marketing and processing],” she said.
To engage them in the entire chain, Dayo, who also manages her own farm, said that women must have full access to land, technology, extension services, capital and infrastructure support, and market.
She encouraged researchers and development workers to focus on studies and projects that will provide continuous access to climate resilient productive assets, technologies, and skills that will help improve productivity and reduce the labor intensity of agricultural activities for women.
Meanwhile, respecting diversity in the workplace were promoted in RTRomualdez, Agusan del Norte. Their staff also joined the 1st LGBT Caraga Regional Summit, September 28.