CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (PIA)--With the aim of recognizing the role of rural women and their contribution to the society, the Department of Agriculture (DA) validated Region 10’s nominee for the 2022 Search for Outstanding Rural Women, August 17.
Ma. Veronica I. Lastima from Sumilao, Bukidnon is chosen as northern Mindanao's nominee for the said search.
Through her hardwork and dedication, her 0.8-hectare land area eventually grew into a 2.5-hectare diversified farm, in which she planted with organically grown crops such as sweet corn, hot chili, eggplant, okra, string beans, ampalaya, sweet pepper, silicot, upo, and sweet potato.
She has also ventured into livestock and poultry by raising pigs, goats, chickens, ducks as well as producing tilapia in her fishpond all year round.
Lastima also practiced contour farming and planted it with crops such as corn, cacao, coffee, durian, calamansi, and banana.
With her area being a demo farm, a lot of her fellow farmers have also adopted her farming technologies after seeing its benefits in increasing yield and preventing soil erosion.
Her active participation in the field of agriculture has also earned her presidency in different organizations such as the Sumilao Rural Improvement Club Federation, SF-San Roque Farmers' Association and Barangay Agricultural and Fishery Council of San Roque.
She is also in the process of applying for her farm to become a certified learning site through DA-Agricultural Training Institute and have it be certified organic.
Sumilao Mayor Jose Antonio A. Villo congratulated Lastima for bringing recognition to Sumilao and shared, “The local government has given priority to agriculture and has been very supportive to the farmers. We are happy to see that the things we have been doing are beginning to take fruit.”
“Veronica is really community-oriented. One thing that we really admire is how she maintains her vegetable farm. In fact, she is one of those who readily supplies our market and is one of those farmers who always helps us in achieving food security,” shared Melchora G. Dumayao, Sumilao municipal agriculturist.
Meanwhile, Lastima encouraged more women to engage in farming saying, “There is money in farming. You only need hard work as your investment.”
Following the field validation of shortlisted regional nominees and deliberation, the announcement of winners is set, October 27, 2022. (DA-10/PIA-10)