Expecting a high profit, Tatay Sinon ended up what he calls, “short or failure,” which means all his farm income just went to expenses or to traders who supplied their seasonal needs for pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. “I [was] a conventional farmer for almost eight years and most of my profit goes to expenses for fertilizers, pesticides, and other instant agricultural products. Actually, it makes my life easy in farming but in [the] long run, I ended without savings, especially for my family,” he said in Ilonggo.
The struggle continued even until his children started college. By then, Tatay Sinon had to admit that farm income was not reliable as financial support due to small profit. “My farm income was always summarized with the ‘short,’ or literally no gain or profit at all after months of waiting. As a family, we ended up increasing our debts to agri-traders,” he half smiled.
Like other parents, Tatay Sinon dreamed of offering a good future for his growing children through the help of his farming but it did not seem possible. The income for his farm never seemed to meet their needs. “I was more than bothered, and struggled when some of my children started schooling in college. I did not know what to do, especially during the end of the month when my children needed an allowance and budget for their tuition fees. I needed to do something. It wasn’t good anymore,” Tatay Sinon recalled.
This cycle continued until Tatay Sinon discovered organic farming technology, which was first introduced to their village by Southern Christian College (SCC) through its Sustainable Ecological Agriculture (SEA) and Food Security under its program on Peace and Tri-people Dialogue Project.
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