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Although not a dominant player in the national economy, fisheries remain an important source of income for Filipinos. The fisheries sector provides livelihood to thousands of people living in coastal areas.

However, fishing is highly dependent on the weather which means that fisherfolks can only earn during peak seasons.

In order to address the issue, women from fisher­ folk households in Sultan Naga Dimaporo, Lanao del Norte, are concocting biofertiliser from fish waste, vegetables, and seaweeds.

Seaweed farms in areas prone to storm surge and typhoons easily get damaged. Instead of throwing away, women converts the damaged seaweeds into biofertilizer. With support from VSO and VSO partner Lanao Aquatic and Marine Fisheries Center for Community Developement (LAFCCOD) introduced the technology to the women in 2019.

In May 2021, LAFCCOD also trained 100 men, women and youth mujahideens (ex-combat­ ants) of the Moro Islamic Front (MILF) from 12 municipalities surrounding the Liguasan marsh in Maguindanao on biofertiliser production and expansion. Environment-friendly, the biofertiliser is used as soil conditioner and plant growth enhancer.

So far, the initiative has benefited a total of 36 primary actors who are currently earning Php 6,000 monthly or 103 euro by selling biofertilisers that they themselves produced. The biofer­tiliser initiative would not only provide livelihood but would also contribute to food security.

VSO's Safe, Peaceful, and Resilient Communities and Resilient Livelihoods proj­ect supports camp transformation and sustainability efforts in the Bangsamoro. The bio-fertilis­er production is one such initiative. Women leaders who are now actively engaged in food secu­rity are committed to establishing a sustainable mechanism for the implementation of zero waste management and agroecological farming.