Antique seaweed farmers receive DOLE aid post-oil spill

Following a devastating oil spill in 2023, the seaweed farmers of Caluya, Antique, are set to rebound with substantial support from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). The initiative, which distributed essential tools for seaweed farming restoration on March 13, is a lifeline for 100 local fisherfolk and farmers from the island barangays of Sibato, Sibolo, Semirara, and Tinogboc.

In 2023, when the oil spill struck the livelihood of Caluya’s coastal communities, DOLE intervened with Php20 million in emergency employment assistance under the TUPAD program, aiding workers whose seaweed farming operations were heavily impacted.

Regional Director Atty. Sixto T. Rodriguez, Jr., has since steered the DOLE Regional Office 6, through its Antique Field Office, to allocate an additional Php2 million for seaweed planting materials. This move is geared towards securing economic stability for the affected farmers by rejuvenating one of their primary income sources.

“We are continuously providing assistance to those affected by the disaster to help them restore their livelihood and for the improvement of their economic condition,” emphasized Atty. Rodriguez.

The Local Government Unit (LGU) of Caluya extended gratitude to DOLE for its relentless efforts in deploying programs, projects, and services such as TUPAD, the Government Internship Program (GIP), and the Special Program for Employment of Students (SPES).

The partnership between DOLE and the Office of Lone District Representative AA Legarda underscores a collaborative approach to crisis recovery, aiming to uplift the island’s economy and safeguard the well-being of its resilient inhabitants.