Ms. Joralden Galleposo, a mother of three and a resident in Sitio Makinaryas, opens the faucet of the communal tapstand she and her neighbors share. This, according to her, has brought huge benefit to them. Before this project, they used to trek for 10 minutes to fetch water from the nearby river.
“Karon, hayahay na jud kaayo (now, it has really become easy for us),” expressed Ms. Joralden Galleposo of the ease she and her community felt after they received a water system project from the Department of Science and Technology – Regional Office IX (DOST-IX).
Ms. Galleposo, a mother of three, recalled that she used to walk for a few kilometers to fetch water for their household use. “Ten minutes (of walk), plus I need to tuck along my young daughter and of course carry the water container,” she recounted in local vernacular.
“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 added.
Ms. 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-IX 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 intake tank constructed as part of the Gravity-type water system project servicing some 800 residents of Sitio Makinaryas, Bunawan, Godod.
The sentiments expressed by Ms. 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,” Timuay Ango-on stated while pointing to the common tapstand in front of his home. “We are very thankful, this is what we really need,” he added.
“We are happy that the government is implementing many programs in our community. We can really feel that the ‘real’ government is here for us,” expressed a community leader, Mr. Junrey Bacang, during the turn-over ceremony held on Thursday, April 18 in Makinaryas Elementary School.
Together with the water system, DOST-IX 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 P2-Million.
The project is implemented in partnership with the various offices of the Local Government Unit of Godod and Barangay LGU of Bunawan.
“Your LGU is committed to bring sustained development to Makinaryas,” pledged Mr. Samuel D. Seronay, Jr., Executive Assistant to Mayor Abel M. Matildo, in his message to the community during the ceremony.
PSTO-ZDN Director Nuhman M. Aljani and LGU-Godod Executive Assistant Samuel D. Seronay, Jr. (5th and 8th from left, respectively) together with other officials from DOST, LGU-Godod, BLGU-Bunawan, officials from security sectors, and Makinaryas community during the riboon-cutting ceremony of the water system project.
Meanwhile, PSTO-ZDN Director Mr. Nuhman M. Aljani expressed that 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,” he stated.
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. (DOST-IX/ PSTO-ZDN Press Release)