Sustainable Integrated Area Development (SIAD): The New Corella Experience
New Corella’s SIAD began in mid-1999 to address the problems of poverty (65% of the population–45,000 in 2003–live below the poverty line), lack of livelihood and social services, environmental degradation, etc.
Through SIAD, the LGU, civil society groups, and the community agreed to unify efforts for change.
Innovative features of the program include regular participatory planning and budgeting, need-based and people-centered plans, expansion of local councils, community participation in monitoring and evaluation, institutionalization of community organizing in the LGU, system of transparency and accountability, and multi-sectoral convergence.
About 75% of households participate in the program. They helped formulate 20 barangay development plans, a municipal development plan, a municipal health and agriculture strategic plan, and sectoral plans. There are functional monitoring teams in 20 barangays, and a municipal multi-sectoral project monitoring committee level. The program has 8 local community organizers, which helped organize and strengthen 65 people’s organizations.
The LGU had allocated P5.8 million for rice, corn, and vegetable production and for livelihood. Some 600 lowland farmers had availed themselves of rice production loans, ranging from P7,000 to P12,000 per hectare at 2.5% per cropping. Their income had increased by an average of 53%. Corn and vegetable production loans of P3,000-P5,000 per hectare were made available to 250 upland farmers, whose income had increased by an average of 66%. Micro-financing, ranging from P3,000 to P100,000, was also made available to 696 beneficiaries, mostly women. Income of days laborers had also increased from P3 to P7 per day.
Other support services include crop production assistance to 152 farmers, hog dispersal to 22 farmers, establishment of a regular market day, 174 hectares of pilot farms for sustainable agriculture, organic fertilizer mixing plant, potable water system, a radio program, barangay assemblies and local development council meetings once to thrice a year. Sustainability of the program is ensured through legislations.
This program is recognized as a Trailblazing Program, a finalist for the 2004 Galing Pook Awards.