DOLE Kabuhayan boosts Guimaras’ local tourism

The catering service is an add-on to the floating cottage (picture) that will provide ease to the tourists and additional income to the members of the San Roque Coastal Environment Program Association.

Local tourism is one of the main sources of income of informal workers living in the island barangays of Guimaras. Brgy.

San Roque in the Municipality of Nueva Valencia is one of the barangays that boasts of its scenic and spectacular beauty that has become a source of livelihood for the community.

The barangays natural beauty was utilized by two barangay associations for local tourism projects.

The San Roque Coastal Environment Program Association (SARCEPA) manages and operates a floating cottage and the San Roque Motor Banca Operators Association (SAROMBOA) earns income from fiber flat boats project.

Aiming for an upgrade and enhancement of their livelihood projects, the associations requested for a total of Php1,181,844.00 from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) as livelihood, assistance which Regional Director Atty. Sixto T. Rodriguez Jr. approved.

The 47 members of the SARCEPA received Php494, 500.00 assistance for the establishment of the catering service and for the enhancement of the floating cottage the association manages and operates.

SARCEPA is a group of marginalized fisherfolks who sustained their livelihood by maintaining a floating cottage for local and foreign tourists who enjoy swimming in the pristine sea and the breathtaking sandbar in the barangay waters.

The catering service is a sure hit for the beneficiaries since it will be a sole food provider for the tourists occupying the facility.

“They have sustained their livelihood and it is a proof of their will to achieve a bright future for their families,” Rodriguez said.

“This is a sign of their determination to improve their lives; their dedication needs our support for the enhancement of the projects,” he added.

For SOROMBOA, a total of Php389,640.00 livelihood assistance was provided for additional fiber flat boats (Php277,190.00) to cater to more tourists who want to go on island hopping and a refreshment store (Php112,450.00) at the port area.

The flat boats received by 32 members of SALOMBOA are expected to provide additional income since the arrivals of visitors soared to 90% after the lifting of the COVID 19 pandemic. I

The refreshment parlor which operates at the Tourism Information and Display Center will provide additional earnings due to its location and accessibility to the tourists.

“The enhancement of your projects is an opportunity that you must take care of,” said Engr. Michael L. Gison, DOLE RO 6-Guimaras Field Office OIC Head, after the turn-over ceremony, ‘‘make it grow and sustainable for the benefits of your family.”