Front liners of the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) are the contact points of the agency’s main clients, who are the farmers. As such, they are the ones who should change first, as they are the agents and sources of knowledge.
This caveat was underscored during a seminar on providing extension services held at the PCC National Headquarters and Gene Pool in the Science City of Muñoz on July 22-26.
The five-day seminar was attended by 31 participants from the different units and stations of PCC. It sought to upgrade and enhance the professional competence of the participants in extension work specifically aimed at wide diffusion and adoption of carabao-based dairy science and practices by the intended end-users.
The learning activity focused on the theme: “Teaching Someone to Fish rather than Giving Fish.”
Adopted from an old Chinese proverb, the theme highlighted the importance of teaching farmers how to be self-dependent and be able to feed themselves and their families for a lifetime instead of just relying on dole-outs and the like from other entities.
Dr. Roger V. Cuyno, a technical adviser of Enablerlin Inc., served as the main resource speaker. Other discussants were Richard V. Bieles, marketing supervisor of East-West Seed Company; Dr. Daniel L. Aquino, PCC national nutrition coordinator; and Lea dR. Abaoag, supervising science specialist and TMSD head, PhilRice; Anita Antonio, senior science research specialist, PhilRice; Engr. Erick Abon, science research specialist I, PhilRice; Ruben Miranda, information technology officer III, PhilRice; and Roger Barroga, program leader, PhilRice.
Conrado Penuliar, a PCC human resource development staff, acted as facilitator.
As an application of the course content, the participants conducted on the fourth day a “Farmers’ Field Day” wherein they served as facilitators, coordinators and resource speakers. The main activities in the field day were technology demonstrations on “Total Mixed Ration (TMR)” and “Artificial Calf Rearing”.
“In field demonstrations, you must have a complete set-up of technology to be featured (if it’s an equipment), give some hand-outs, be alert, be ready, and know all the technical and other details so you can ably respond to any question,” Abon said.
On the other hand, Antonio stressed: “To learn it, do it and discover it.”
“We need to retrain ourselves to improve our competency level because we cannot say that you yourself do not understand it,” Cuyno emphasized.