Philippines: Italian gov't-assisted projects in Albay amount to P26 million

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Legazpi City (11 November) -- The Italian government has infused around P26 million for various projects in the province of Albay as part of their assistance to the devastation wrought by Typhoon Reming in 2006.

Started in October 2007, the Italian cooperation program was able to build around 180 houses for the displaced families in the municipalities of Camalig and Guinobatan in Albay.

The total cost for the construction of the housing units iamounted to P14 million.

Aside from permanent shelter for the displaced families the program also constructed two livelihood centers amounting to P792,000 in the resettlement areas of Barangay Tagaytay, Camalig and Quitago in Guinobatan.

Sergio Quattrocchi, Italian cooperation project coordinator, said the two livelihood centers are equipped with different sewing machines to be utilized by 48 organized women associations. The associations were also provided with raw materials and tools for the production of various handicrafts and other products made of cotton and raffia.

Quattrocchi said the livelihood centers seek to revitalize unemployed women in the resettlement areas and to help improve their living after the devastation of Typhoon Reming.

For those In the agriculture sector, the Italian cooperation program provided assistance to coconut farmers and fisherfolk.

Quattrocchi said for the past months the Italian government provided 80,000 coconut seedlings for replanting in the municipalities of Camalig and Polangui, and the cities of Legazpi and Ligao. "Another 10,000 seed nuts has been turned over to Ligao City coconut nursery as additional augmentation."

Aside from these, around 190 fisherfolk in the municipalities of Rapu-Rapu, Sto. Domingo and Manito were the beneficiaries of fishing boats including nets and other fishing materials. "The total cost of assistance to the fisherfolk amounted to P2 million."

"Our cooperation projects in the province of Albay is about to end this year and we will still provide help to the people of Albay in the future," Quattrocchi assured. (MDR, PNA)