From drug users to farmers
Sen. Cynthia Villar wants to rehabilitate drug user surrenderers by way of farming. Since the implementation of the anti-illegal drugs drive, Operation Tokhang, at least 60,000 self-confessed drug users have surrendered to the Philippine National Police.
“We heard testimonies of individuals whose lives changed after training in agriculture. It’s a livelihood opportunity for drug users who want to start anew,” stated Villar, who also said that the surrenderers can also be beneficiaries of scholarships.
Villar cited the Duran Farm in San Ildefonso, Bulacan, whose owner, Desiree Duran, is offering scholarships for rehabilitated drug users who want to become productive members of society.
Duran’s 3.6-hectare property, the first accredited Farm Tourism Site in Central Luzon, offers a two-month certificate course on agriculture production. She disclosed that after it became a destination for “agri-turistas,” the community was revitalized, and businesses grew in the area.
Villar’s seven-hectare Sipag (Social Institute for Poverty Alleviation and Governance) Farm School, located at the boundary of Las Piñas and Bacoor, also offers training programs on beekeeping and vegetable, livestock and mushroom production.
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