Women in Barangay Libas are becoming economically empowered with the aid of a “miracle tree” called Moringa Oleifera.
The Moringa tree, locally known as malunggay, has a global and local demand for the production of fortified food, personal care and pharmaceuticals, specific to herbal based medicines and supplements.
The international non-governmental organisation Oxfam realised the viability of the project and will be supporting the growth of this economic endeavour. According to Barbara Stockings, Oxfam Great Britain chief executive officer, the Moringa tree has shown positive results and Oxfam will support the small farmers, especially the women, to sell the leaves on the tree once it reaches commercial production.
Oxfam Hong Kong was also recently in the country to witness the progress of Oxfam’s humanitarian projects, particularly in the Caraga Region. As an assurance there will be a continuous supply of quality seedlings of Moringa the women of the Libas Farmers Multipurpose Cooperative (LFMPC) have established their own nursery. The nursery will enable the women to empower their communities with the income derived.
The Moringa project will intensify market development within the private sector and eventually draw in government support for the growth of this rewarding industry.