Tambuyog Development Center is the NGO assigned to our group during this semesters CWTS. At first Tambuyog was just like any other NGO, nothing that special, with group meetings at their like-house office in Marunong Street, Teachers Village. The people there were generally happy and mostly payed most of their attention to the laptops or computers in front of them, so generally we only talked to the one handling us.
But when we were assigned out things to do, with our group to summarize, analyze and criticize their past projects, we started to know more about Tambuyog and the passion the NGO (and other NGO`s like them) has to help this country. With the Napoles scandal and the misuse of PDAF, the image of NGO`s generally went downhill, but to see NGO`s such as this would lift your spirits with the good and honest intentions they have to help both the country and the people.
One of the projects I summarized, analyzed and criticized is the project entitled “An approach to increasing bargaining power and reducing poverty of small scale fisheries in the Philippines” which is a three year project whose goal is to achieve the integration of the main areas crucial for improving the lives of marginalized small scale fishers – governance over fisheries resources and development of fishery social enterprises. It is directly aimed at addressing the basic problems of poverty and resource degradation that confront the fishing industry, in general and small scale fishers in particular. And while reading, summarizing and analyzing the report you will see in practice the economic principles you would learn in class (in this case, the project aims to have the fishermen internalize the externality arising from the unrestricted common resource good which is the fishing grounds) aside from all the other social objectives it aims to achieve (such as women`s participation, reduction of income inequality, creating of livelihood etc.). You would also see how NGO`s like this serve as a critical tool/element for any decision-makers since they`re the ones who conducted fieldwork surveys, discussed with the fishermen, and all the activities which collected information and data that would help the decision makers in analyzing what action would be best to do.
Aside from the critical role NGO`s such as this play in the government (ie. by gathering data, etc.) the one that struck me the most and the reason for the title of this blog is that it raises its funds from scratch (since funding is now stricter because of the Napoles issue), they try to find ways in order to fund the projects which would not benefit themselves but the people and the country as a whole, which is truly a nationalistic and patriotic ideal. The way that they dont care about profits (or ife there are would use it on future projects) but by how well their projects were able to help the people is something really inspiring to share about, I hope that more NGO`s such as this would continue to serve their nationalistic and patriotic ideals, and that I hope the image of NGO`s would be that tarnished by recent controversies that shocked the country, because acts such as this (helping the country and its people) are somethings we have very little supply of.
-Miguel Rey Ramos, 2012-30997