The 2012 CFP Philippines National Conference with the theme “Revisiting the Past and Moving towards a Sustainable Future” was held at Rizal Re-Creation Center, Rizal, Laguna on July 11 – 15, 2012. The Conference was attended by some 30 people including the CFP National Coordinator, Provincial Coordinators, OISCA Manila staff, guests and Conference volunteers.
One of the activities was a review of the previous conferences from 2008 to 2011. This gave the young OISCA Technical Trainees Alumni Association (OTTAA) leaders a glimpse of the past and the impact created by the previous conferences in the operation of provincial CFP centers. The Coordinators were also asked to share the difficulties they encountered and success stories in terms of implementation of self-sustaining projects.
In the workshops, assessment from Provincial Centers was presented, and the participants discussed planning to address problems and difficulties. Also, they took up funding opportunities for program sustainability.
The Coordinators explained inability to apply global positioning system (GPS) in the documentation of CFP areas. In particular, they found geo-tagging difficult. This was addressed by asking Mr. Garry de Veluz, an OTTAA member from Lucban Training Center, to review the procedures learned from the previous Conference. Ms. Maribeth N. Reboton, National Coordinator, asked the Coordinators to use the GPS and incorporate what they learned in the coming reports.
Several speakers were also invited for upgrading of emerging programs and technologies. Ms. Maria Charito E. Balladares and Mr. Bryan V. Apacionado, both from the University of the Philippines at Los Banos gave an orientation on “Edible Landscaping.” Topics discussed included brief history, definition of edible landscaping, elements of design, principles of design, design consideration and process. The benefits of edible landscaping were also discussed.
Mr. Joey Austria of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) gave a lecture on the National Greening Program. The Secretariat was asked to write all issues that were raised in the subsequent Q & A session so that these can be discussed thoroughly with the OISCA Manila Office. This is in line with the agreement concluded by OISCA with DENR on the implementation of CFP.
The president of OTTAA Philippines, Mr. Antonio P. Mendoza, introduced the concept of water bonsai and its benefits. The word “Bonsai” is a Japanese word which means ‘planted in a container.’ Some of the benefits of having indoor plants in this case, the water bonsai, are: relaxing effect of plant, control of humidity within the optimum levels for human health, absorption of carbon dioxide and emission of oxygen to refresh the air. During the practical session, the participants expressed their creativity in the choice of plant material, design of vase and use of rope and pebbles to accentuate their water bonsai.
Team building activities such as exercise, swimming, dancing and games, were included in the program of the 4-day Conference. These helped foster teamwork spirit among the participants.
On the last day, Mr. Avelino O. Lozada, Coordinator from Zamboanga del Norte, shared how carbon sequestration measurement will be done in CFP sites and other reforestation projects of OISCA.
The detailed schedule of the conferece is available from the below (PDF).