Salceda lauds Albay young farmers’ group recognition as first of its kind CSO 

Salceda lauds Albay young farmers’ group recognition as first of its kind CSO 

LEGAZPI CITY – Albay 2nd District Representative Joey Sarte Salceda has lauded the Albay Young Farmers Organization, Inc. (AYFO) for its groundbreaking achievement of being accredited as ‘first of its kind’ civil society youth organization (CSO) in the country. 

Salceda, who actively promoted and helped organize the AYFO has hailed the group’s significant contributions to the agriculture sector and its dedication to fostering a potent and dynamic youth group in food production in Albay and the entire Bicol region. 

The accreditation, bestowed on AYFO on December 1, 2023 by the Department of Agriculture , (DA) through its Bicol Regional Director Rodel P. Tornilla, makes the group a “legitimate CSO” and government partner in the implementation of agriculture and fishery programs, among others. 

Salceda emphasized AYFO’s pivotal role in disseminating knowledge and information on modern agriculture technology and advocating for sustainable farming practices, which are crucial for future generations. Its journey to becoming a recognized CSO is marked by a series of remarkable achievements. 

Prior to its accreditation, the organization received national acclaim as one of Ten Accomplished Youth Organization (TAYO) Awardee, from a field of 491 organizations in the country. 

AYFO’s outstanding contributions were further underscored by three additional awards: the Adhika Fellowship Grant Award, San Miguel Better World Award, and 1st Runner Up Video Stint Award, solidifying its status as a pioneering youth-led organization at the forefront of agriculture and community development. 

AYFO continues to spearhead transformative initiatives in Albay’s agricultural landscape, guided by its visionary mission of “Walang Albayanong Magugutom” (No Albayano will go hungry). 

Salceda said AYFO’s principles is rooted in the belief that food security is a fundamental human right, and it embodies the spirit of Albayanos, driven by passion and dedication to ensure a bountiful future for all. Looking forward to the year 2024, AYFO aligns its efforts with the central theme “ANGAT – Agri-Youth Network for Growth, Agriculture and Transformation,” which embodies commitment to empowering youth in agriculture, emphasizing economic prosperity, technological advancement, and sustainable development. 

The organization envisions a dynamic agri-youth community actively contributing to the growth and transformation of Albay’s agricultural sector. Under the ANGAT theme, AYFO’s flagship program, the Albay Edible Landscaping Project, enters its fifth season, slated for implementation in March 2024. 

The project, initiated in 2021 through partnerships between AYFO and Salceda’s congressional office, aims to convert backyard gardens and vacant lots into productive spaces by cultivating vegetables instead of ornamental plants. Season 5 of the Edible Landscaping sa Albay Project boasts a record-breaking participation, with 301 barangays joining the initiative, surpassing previous seasons in scale and impact. 

Salceda expressed optimism that AYFO’s accomplishments will pave the way for increased government support and recognition of youth contributions to the agriculture sector. He emphasized AYFO’s pivotal role in shaping the future of farming through knowledge dissemination and advocacy for sustainable practices, essential for ensuring food security and environmental conservation.

With its accreditation as a CSO and history of accolades, AYFO continues to lead the way in empowering youth in agriculture, setting a precedent for civil society engagement and fostering sustainable development in the Philippines. AYFO is part of the Albay Young Farmers Program or AYFP, a post-pandemic agricultural adaptation for the youth organized by Salceda, which is currently a member of the National Coordinating Body of UNESCO Clubs in the Philippines (NCBUCP). 

The AYFP received the accreditation certificate as a UNESCO Club member during the International Assembly of Youth for UNESCO (Y4U) in December 2022 at Bayview Park Hotel, Manila. The group joined 25 other clubs accredited by UNESCO during that year.