DIPOLOG CITY, May 25 (PIA) - Residents of Sitio Makinaryas, Barangay Bunawan in Godod town can now take a breather from walking kilometers of distance to fetch water for daily household use.
“Karon, hayahay na gyud kaayo (now, it has really become easy for us),” expressed Joralden Galleposo of the relief her family and community felt after they received a water system project from the Department of Science and Technology – Regional Office (DOST)-9.
Galleposo, mother of three, recounted in the local dialect how she had to walk 10 minutes of distance to fetch water while tucking her young daughter along and the struggle of carrying the water container back to their house.
“We are thankful that we have been granted this water project. Now, we can give a nice bath to our children. They can go to school clean and in proper hygiene,” she said.
Galleposo is among the 800 residents of Sitio Makinaryas, Barangay Bunawan who benefited from a Gravity-type level 2 water system project funded by DOST-9 through its Community Empowerment thru Science and Technology (CEST) program. The project funded the improvement of the spring source, construction of an intake tank, and dozens of communal tapstands.
Sitio Makinaryas is located in the mountainous area of Godod, around four hours away by foot from Barangay Bunawan proper. In the past, the community was frequented by some armed insurgents. The village is among the areas identified as a priority for government intervention by the inter-agency task force to end local communist armed conflict (ELCAC) as stipulated under Executive Order No. 70 signed in 2018.
The sentiments expressed by Galleposo were echoed by the community’s chieftain, Timuay Martin Ango-on.
“In this hilly community, when we talk about the water supply, we used to trek to the nearby river while carrying the heavy water containers. That was too laborious. But now, the water faucet is within our doorsteps,” he said, while pointing to the common tapstand in front of his home.
“We are very thankful. This is what we really need," he added.
Junrey Bacang, community leader, expressed his gratitude to the government for implementing several programs in their area during the recent project turn-over ceremony held at Makinaryas Elementary School.
Together with the water system, DOST-9 through its Provincial Science and Technology Office–Zamboanga del Norte (PSTO-ZDN) also turned over other components of CEST project, such as a village-level corn processing facility in Bunawan and digital library STARBOOKS to three schools in the same barangay including Makinaryas. The total assistance granted by the agency to the community amounts to more than Php2 million.
The project is implemented in partnership with the various offices of the local government unit of Godod and Barangay Bunawan.
“Your LGU is committed to bring sustained development to Makinaryas,” Samuel D. Seronay, Jr., executive assistant to Mayor Abel M. Matildo affirmed in his message to the community during the ceremony.
Meanwhile, PSTO-ZDN Director Nuhman M. Aljani said DOST is happy to see the interventions provided by the agency have a huge impact in the community.
“We are really happy and feeling fulfilled seeing that the CEST project we implemented here is really giving great benefits to the community," Aljani said.
CEST is a nationwide program of DOST targeting to provide a package of assistance to low-income groups and marginalized communities. Its assistance is provided in multiple entry points such as economic enterprise development, water and sanitation, education, and effective governance, among others. (RVC/EDT/PIA9-Zamboanga del Norte/with reports and photos from DOST/PSTO ZDN)