SAN AGUSTIN, PILI CAMARINES SUR – The Department of Agriculture (DA) Bicol entered into an agreement with the Camarines Sur Polytechnic Colleges (CSPC) and the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) to jointly pursue aggressive technology transfer and strategic communication employing both conventional media like the radio as well as modern on-line platfortms like digital television and internet or web-based broadcast.

The signing of the Memorandum of Agreement was made by the heads of the three parties/institutions namely : Dr. Charlito P. Cadag, CSPC president ; Elsa A. Parot, ATI –Bicol Director and; Rodel P. Tornilla, DA-RFO 5 Regional Executive Director held on May 19, 2021 at the DA Regional Office.

Under the agreement the CSPC , as the first party shall make available to DA and ATI its existing and currently operating radio facility , studio and radio frequency currently being used for its blended learning and soon to be operational digital television facility including the technical manpower.

The ATI for its part as the second party shall prepare the training designs and learning modules and broadcast materials to be aired in the radio/tv station and shall conduct school-on-the air and other development-oriented agricultural radio progams; for farmers, women and youth.

The DA as the third party committed to initially transfer funds to the CSPC in the amount of one million pesos (PhP1milliom) to be used by the latter for enhancing, improvement and upgrading of their radio and television facilities for wider reach, more efficient and quality broadcast. The DA shall also make use of the CSPC radio and television facilities as channel for its information, communication and advocacy activities.

The DA also commits to provide technical and additional logistical support in line with this undertaking as needed and based on submitted proposals and in accordance with the accounting rules and regulations and subject to availability of funds.

According to Director Tornilla strategic communication is one of the key strategies that the DA will employ under the leadership of secretary William Dar to accelerate the transformation of the agriculture sector towards a modern industrialized Philippines. “Improved information, communication technology capacities not only for research but also for extension initiatives will be supported. Moreover we are also instructed to mobilize and empower partners.” Tornilla added.

Dr. Cadag for his part said that the partnership forged with the DA is a significant step towards the advancement of their institution as very soon it will be upgraded into a university and one of the curricular offerings they are preparing for is Development Communication which would be the first in the region.

Director Parot also thanked the DA for engaging and involving the ATI to be part of the partnership. She said that as the training arm of the DA their institute is always finding ways to reach and teach more farmers using traditional and modern methods to transfer technology. With the pandemic still raging, face-to face trainings are not allowed for a big number of participants so we also adapted the on-line or virtual or blended scheme,” she added.

Also present during the MOA signing were: Luz R. Marcelino, DA Regional Technical Director for Operations; Dr. Mary Grace DP. Rodriguez , Chief of Field Operations Division (DA); Dr. April Z. Luzon, Director, Institutional Planning & Development ; Heiji Dimabogte, Radio Station Manager, Charles Bolival, Director Extension Service, (all from CSPC); Primalou Imperial, Chief, Information Service Section, ATI and ; Emily B. Bordado, chief, DA-RAFIS, (EMILY B. BORDADO/DAS-RAFIS 5 – Photo credits: EMIL PASUMBAL &RAYMOND ADVERSARIO)