The Partnership for Development Assistance in the Philippines Inc. (formerly known as Philippine Development Assistance Programme, Inc.) or PDAP started as a consortium of Filipino and Canadian non-government organizations (NGOs). PDAP is a non-stock, non-profit organization founded in 1986 and registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission on July 5, 1990 for the purpose of collaborating with and assisting organized groups and disadvantaged Filipinos to develop into self-reliant communities. It has six (6) member networks with more than 300 community-based organizations (i.e. Peoples’ Organizations or POs) and a significant number of NGOs as members. Its current thrust is the empowerment of rural households by establishing and supporting collective rural social enterprises. Since 1986, PDAP implemented major projects that impact the poor and rural communities.
Responding to Difficult Times
PDAP’s phase 1 (1986 until 1989) which began immediately after the successful conclusion of the EDSA uprising with funds amounting to Cdn$4.88M, and a bridge fund amounting to Cdn$200,000. The fund was allocated to support community-based poverty alleviation projects.
Phase 2 (1989 until 1996) continued the design, structure and objectives of Phase 1 with a substantially increased funding support of Cdn$14.97M for community-based projects benefitting the rural and urban poor as well as special disadvantaged groups such as children, women, disabled and other marginalized sectors. In Phase 2, there was also a gradual shift towards a more programmatic approach focusing on agricultural development projects such as:
Sustainable Agriculture Program
The initiative to consolidate small projects related to agriculture and rural development led to establishing the Sustainable Agriculture Program in 1994. This program eventually became a primary focus of PDAP Phase 3 under the Promoting Partnerships in Sustainable Enterprises (PPSE).
Central Loan Fund
A Central Loan Fund (CLF) was established in 1994 to consolidate and preserve the gains of the various social credit projects that PDAP assisted. The CLF was a savings-based credit facility that provided a regular source of credit to PDAP’s Philippine NGO partners to meet the capital requirements of their partner communities’ livelihood projects. Out of PDAP’s desire to make better use of its four-year old CLF, it created a single and centralized lending program; thus, the Federation of Peoples’ Sustainable Development Cooperative (FPSDC) was incorporated in 1998. From a mere program, it has metamorphosed to a network of PDAP’s affiliate organizations that decided to solidify their partnership to be a vehicle of drawing the marginalized sectors into the mainstream of development processes.
A Donor in Transition and Unchanged Philippine Realities
Promoting Participation in Sustainable Enterprises (PPSE) Program
The years 1997 to 2004 signified PDAP’s gradual shift from a “traditional mode” of providing assistance to partner NGOs and POs to a more focused development programming. PDAP implemented its third phase program with CIDA. Initially a four-year program (1997-2001), but extended for three more years (2002-2004), PPSE with Cdn$7.9M grant from CIDA was implemented in 10 agrarian reform communities in the provinces of Camarines Sur, Negros Occidental, Iloilo, Bukidnon and Davao del Sur. PPSE supported enterprise development, capacity building and policy advocacy within the context of a sustainable integrated development (SIAD) framework.
Program for Peace and Development in the Southern Zone of Peace and Development (PPDSA)
PPDSA was implemented in 1997 until 2004 which ultimately sought to create a favorable environment to sustain peace-building efforts by creating employment opportunities, particularly for demobilized MNLF regulars. Two main components – livelihood and enterprise development, and community organizing and capacity building – were implemented through existing and newly organized MNLF cooperatives. Through PPDSA, PDAP was later able to evolve and articulate its peace-building framework that guided its program implementation.
Mindanao Program for Peace and Development (ProPeace)
ProPeace worked on the gains of PPDSA between 2000 until 2004. PDAP sharpened its analysis on the development of communities in conflict-affected areas allowing it to evolve corresponding assistance packages for each stage and refine its peace-building framework. Six stages mark a continuum from surviving the conflict situation to post-conflict preparation to rehabilitation to agricultural and productivity livelihood to micro-enterprises to industry-oriented enterprises.
Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Program (ARISP)
PDAP concluded a contract with the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to manage the institutional development component of the Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Program (ARISP). The component which involved 47 NGOs, provided institutional development support to 69 agrarian reform communities (ARCs). The project was implemented in 1999 until 2001.
Relief and Rehabilitation Project in Damulog Bukidnon in response to Pikit War (2003)
This project provided emergency relief to about 600 displaced households, mostly indigenous peoples from the border barangays and towns of Cotabato and Bukidnon who fled their communities at the height of the military operations in Columbio, Sultan Kudarat in December 2002.
Mapun Relief and Rehabilitation Project
Funded by Canada Fund, World Accord and Foundation for Aid to the Philippines (FAPI), this project which was implemented in 2003-2004, was an emergency response to the plight of Filipino deportees from Malaysia. Working in partnership with the Local Government Unit, including the Rural Health Unit, it provided relief goods, medicines and capacity building sessions, and opened-up opportunities for the deportees and marginalized people of Mapun to access livelihood activities and employment. World Accord and FAPI, provided livelihood and rural enterprise assistance.
PDAP becomes PDAP Philippines
Promoting Rural Industries and Market Enhancement (PRIME) Program
PRIME was a Cad$6.8 million six-year project with Cad$4.8M grant provided by the Canadian International Development Agency
(CIDA). Implemented between 2005 until 2011, PRIME’s expected impact was to reduce poverty in targeted rural areas; this was to be achieved by supporting the development of rural enterprises within the organic and natural products sector (e.g., organic rice, organic muscovado sugar, and seaweeds) resulting in the enhancement of food security, increased household income and generation of jobs and employment for both men and women. Out of PDAP’s initiatives in the PRIME Program to consolidate and advance two (2) sunrise industries (i.e. organic rice and muscovado sugar) to take-off and develop into strong and mature industries, the Global Organic Wellness Corporation (GlowCorp) was established. GlowCorp is a stock and for-profit corporation whose main stockholders are enterprises supported by PRIME. GlowCorp provides better market access and premium product prices to organic rice and muscovado farmers and millers, coco-sugar producers and their respective cooperatives and associations.
Muscovado Industry Upscaling Project
This project aimed to consolidate small sugarcane farmers and muscovado millers into a corporate entity to develop the local muscovado industry in Sultan Kudarat. This involved training and application of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) or the GMP-HACCP standards to existing practices among muscovado mills. At the minimum, these standards were introduced at the industry level.
Building Unity and Integrating Local Efforts towards Democratic Development (BUILD) Project
The BUILD Project was implemented in partnership with CIDA and the Pagtabangan-BaSulTa consortium from August 2005 to May 2006 in Tawi-tawi. The project consisted of capacity building activities aimed to improve and strengthen the ability of civil society organizations (CSOs) to plan, implement, and manage development projects in the areas. The project resulted in the formation of PaRMaTa – a formal coalition of CSOs in Tawi-tawi.
Sitangkai Seaweed Productivity Enhancement through Education and Extension (SP3E) Project
The SP3E Project implemented in partnership with Consuelo Foundation was able to train 120 out-of-school youth, aged 15 to 24, to become seaweed farming para-extension workers. Another 330 farmer-youth were taught to help improve seaweed farming technology in three selected areas in Sitangkai.
Local Governance Support Program for Local Economic Development (LGSP-LED) – Organic Rice Chain Development Program
Through the LGSP-LED, PDAP provided training and consultancy services using the value chain approach on organic agricultural program of the One Pangasinan Alliance of LGUs (OPAL).
PDAP in Transition
Child-Focused Community Development (CFCD) Program
The CFCD Program is a one – year program by PDAP in 2011-2012 in partnership with Kindernothilfe (KnH) in Sibutu Island. Through the CFCD Program, communities were organized into Self – Help Groups (SHeGs) benefitting the mothers, children and the communities in Sibutu Island, Tawi – Tawi.
Seaweed Enterprise for Action Working for Empowerment and Economic Development (SEAWEED) Project
The SEAWEED Project is a three-year project (March 2011 to August 31, 2014) implemented in the Caraga region in partnership with Fundacion CODESPA and funded by Agencia Española de Cooperacion International para el Desarollo (AECID). The project was a replication of a project in Sitangkai under the PRIME Program. It aimed to scale-up the seaweed industry in the Caraga region through the adoption of new seaweed farming technology, strengthening of the seaweed farmers’ organizations, and linking the seaweed farmers to the market and financial institutions.
Typhoon Yolanda Rehabilitation Projects in Western Samar
Between 2014 until 2016, PDAP implemented two (2) Typhoon Yolanda rehabilitation projects in the municipalities of Basey and Marabut, Western Samar, one of which is was implemented in partnership with Tabang Visayas through the Assisi Development Foundation Inc. (ADFI) and funded by Cross Catholic Outreach and the other one is funded by the Overseas Missionary Fellowship (OMF) International Philippines through the Serving Affected Families Effectively (SAFE). Both projects helped accelerate the economic recovery of the beneficiaries through seaweeds farming.
“Economically empowered rural households”
“To contribute to the economic empowerment of rural households by establishing and supporting collective rural social enterprises.”
- To improve rural households’ equitable access (including land tenure) to productive natural resources, sustainable agricultural technologies, capital and other assets; and
- To assist and empower rural households in organizing themselves and/or building the institutions/collective rural social enterprises (they need) for sustainable livelihoods/sources of income.
Gil T. Salazar