Talakag, Bukidnon is a landlocked community located in the NE part of the province. It has an area of @948 sq. km with a population of 66,310 as of 2010.
The annual growth rate is 7.54%. The municipality is primarily agro-industrial within an ecologically balanced environment. Major economic products coming from the area include bananas, pineapples, corn and rise, root crops, fruits and livestock. Slightly more than 50% are in the labor force. The municipality is home to many tribal groups including “Bukidnon, Higaonon, and Talaandig”. Public facilities include elementary, secondary schools and postal office, a health center and emergency hospital, a rural bank and cooperatives. Within the town proper, residents enjoy running water and electricity; however a vast majority of residents in the more remote areas of the municipality lack both potable water and electricity. Talakag ranks second in childhood malnitrition in the province.
In November 2011, Project Kasaligan gave out its first set of loans to 35 women, residents of a small, highly impoverish area, simply called village 5, about 2 or 3 km from the center of town. The average loan disbursement was @3000.00 pesos or the equivalent of about 75.00 dollars for a 6 month period with an interest rate of 2.5% per month. For most residents, the most common way, in the past, to loan money was through loan sharks who charged very high interest rates which often resulted in individuals losing everything, the little of what they had. Project Kasaligan’s goal is to offer another alternative, a new path, to help lift people out of poverty.
Starting with these small loans and re-loaning over time these women have taken the first step towards realizing their dream. Loan disbursements will help residents in village 5 start a sari-sari (mini) store, start a fish vending business, a rice dealer business, have a small garment-making business as well as other ventures.
The heart of the work of project Kasaligan is the group using the Grameen system for microcredit. To form a group, it takes five women to make it happen. The program is based on mutual care, respect and support for one another; it is a character-based model that assumes honesty, discipline and accountability. These women become the guarantee, the collateral to the loan that will be credited to them once thier application has been approved.
So, who are the poor of Talakag? Where do they live? What are their dreams? How do they plan to get there? Some typical clients who are part of Project Kasaligan have stepped forward to share their stories with you.
|Center 1, Barangay #3This pioneering group of Project Kasaligan was launched last November 28, 2011. They are a mixed of start-up and ongoing business owners and are continously inspiring women in their community. This center has grown exponentially and currently opened another center to accommodate new members.|
|Center 2, Barangay #4
The women of this barangay are no longer new to any nature of business. Their houses are located near the town’s market. Their businesses vary from vending fish, meat, and vegetables; hog raising; massage therapy (home service); manicure & pedicure; and many others. These women hold a strong camaraderie and won the award of the “BEST CENTER HOUSE” in 2012 & 2013.
|Center 3, Landing
The members of this group are depleted to use their strength to earn small income every day to feed their families through selling food around their neighborhood. Their strong determination pushes them to fight poverty and disregard anxieties.
|Center 4, Sitio Tirucan
The village of Tirucan is located in Barangay Santo Nino. Their means of livelihood are sari-sari store (mini in-house variety store), raising livestock, farming or working as farm laborers. Project Kasaligan started a group of fifteen to do innovative changes in this village. The center chief, Mrs. Rubella Bonsayon, won the “BEST CENTER CHIEF” in 2012 as she effectively encouraged her members to maintain high attendance and return rates.
|Center 5, Barangay San Antonio
Project Kasaligan evolves in many ways. The members of this group are products of our Referral Program where our current Kasaligan members qualify other trust-worthy women in the same community.
|Center 6, Barangay Santo Nino
The members of this center are Feeding Program beneficiaries. Project Kasaligan identified the needs of the mothers in which giving them a small start-up capital to invest assures expanding their businesses and help them support their growing family.
|Center 7, Barangay Campo
After our 1st Foundation Day in November 28, 2012, Project Kasaligan conducted a community survey to randomly selected barangays and villages. We assessed how PK beneficiaries influenced other women in the community. The women of this particular barangay are results of a constructive theory that Project Kasaligan is effective on its fight against poverty through providing small capital investments.
|Center 8, Barangay San Isidro (A)
Project Kasaligan is growing fast! This center currently has 44 active members. Their businesses include food vending, backyard farming, livestock raising, buy & sell ready-to-wear, vegetable & meat vending, etc. This center won the best center in 2015, 4th foundation day held at Word of Life Bible Camp. Mrs. Welma Radoc won the best center chief for the 3rd time since its launching in 2013.
|Center 9, Balaon
These women are determined to join Project Kasaligan for they are sorrounded with rich natural resources. Ugyaban River a popular tourist destination in Northern Mindanao is known for its extreme white water rafting. This tourist spot provides some of the mothers an opportunity to sell their handicrafts as souvenirs. Balaon is also known for its sweet tasty bananas which they can make a variety of interesting food snack such as banana chips, banana cue, or just plain bioled/steamed bananas.
|Center 10, Buli
This center was launched in March 2014 with 13 members and since then, they have doubled their recruitment which earned them the award of the Best Center Chief and Best Center house on the 3rd Foundation Day held last November 2014. The women of this center are known for cooking native delicacies such as steamed rice cake, cassava roll, purple yam dessert, etc.
|Center 11, Guimbaloron
Guimbaloron is recognized as the most consistent center because they are able to maintain 100 percent return and attendance rates since its launching in July 2014. This group of women are known for making slippers and retail them in their neighboring villages. They are continually growing and we may consider creating another group of beneficiaries from the same area to be able to accommodate new members.
|Center 12, San Isidro (B)
The village of San Isidro is one of the most densely populated barangays in the town of Talakag. Our group of beneficiaries in this particular village has reached its limit which has stemmed into a second group. Their businesses vary from snack vending, making recycled bags from foil packets, mini variety stores, buy and sell of used clothing.