From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 15, 2020): Air Force buys veggies for poor families in Manila (By Liza Agoot)
VEGETABLES FOR DONATION. The Philippine Air Force (PAF) led by team leader Capt. Edward Licnachan is transporting 16 tons of assorted vegetables bought from farmers in Benguet which will be donated to the poor families in Manila affected by a recent fire. Some of the vegetables would be distributed to indigents in Metro Manila affected by the enhanced community quarantine. (PNA photo by Liza T. Agoot)
LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – The Philippine Air Force (PAF), through its civil-military operations office, has purchased more than 13 tons of assorted vegetables from farmers here for distribution to poor families in Metro Manila affected by the enhanced community quarantine.
The PAF also got three more tons, mostly carrots, from the farmers as part of their donation.
Capt. Edward Licnachan, PAF team leader, said on Wednesday they decided to buy the vegetables after seeing a social media posting showing farmers already disposing of their produce due to the minimal number of buyers.
“Nabuo ang idea noong nanggaling ako sa Ifugao at nag uwi ako sa Manila ng gulay tapos nakita pa namin mga post na nagtatapon ng gulay ang mga farmer kasi nabubulok kaya naisip namin na tulungan ang farmers at the same time, makatulong sa mga mamamayan sa Manila (The idea was conceptualized when I brought with me vegetables from Ifugao and matched with what we saw on social media where farmers have been throwing their vegetables as they were rotting. We thought of helping the farmers at the same time, help Manila residents),” said Licnachan, also a native of Mayaoyao town in Ifugao.
He said the money came from the PAF community relations fund and the cash donations they received to buy the vegetables.
“We are bringing it to Villamor where it will be repacked and will be donated to the residents in areas where there were fire incidents,” Licnachan said.
He said they will also bring to Binondo, Baseco and if there are still remaining vegetables, they will give to front-liners and to the hospital personnel who lead the fight against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19)
“Marami po tayong mapagbibigyan (There are many we can give these vegetables to),” he said.
He said it is the first time they are doing the said community relations activity, hitting two birds with one stone- helping the farmers and aiding the victims.
He said they might have succeeding trips, especially if there are donors.
Agot Balanoy, public relations officer of the league of associations at La Trinidad Trading areas and the Benguet farmers' marketing cooperative head, said they were contacted by the PAF about buying vegetables and give them as donations.
“Of the 16 tons, they bought about 80 percent composed of assorted vegetables and we added about three tons mostly carrots,” she said.