Cebu’s Urban Gardening, Waste Utilization and Takakura Composting Competition
Fresh tomatoes, pechay, kangkong, okra, string beans, ampalaya, mongo beans, eggplant, bell pepper and chilies harvested right in front of your doorstep sounds to good to be true but not for the urban poor organizations (UPOs) in Talisay City which joined the Urban Gardening, Waste Utilization and Takakura Composting Contest. The Talisay City Government in cooperation with the Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor (PCUP) launched this contest in February 2016. During its launching, twenty-four (24) UPOs signed up to join, however, on the first round of judging last June 1, 2016, nineteen (19) UPOs boasted of their respective urban gardens.
On the second round of judging last September 27, 2016. Out of the nineteen (19) UPOs, only six (6) has remained, contending for the much coveted award; they are namely: Crosan Lower Urban Poor Association, Crosan Homeowners Association, Villa Sta. Cruz HOA, Candaya Urban Poor HOA, Great Homes Subdivision HOA and Selma Crusher HOA. The criteria this time included the associations’ income earned from their harvest and sales of the waste materials they have collected. They are required to fertilize their crops with the harvest of their takakura composting. Considering that garden lots are very limited, or if not, unavailable, they used bottles, tires, worn-out shoes and backpacks as garden pots. It shows that garbage has potential for practical uses. Aside from drawing out their ingenuity, it also brings out their creativity and at the same time address the issue of food security within their reach.
The last round of judging is slated on the second week of November while the awarding of winning entries will serve as one of the highlights of the city’s Urban Poor Solidarity Week (UPSW) celebration in the first week of December this year.
(By Ms. Arlene D. Tudtud, AC-FOD Visayas, 11 October 2016)