The Bagobo-Tagabawa Tribe and the Christian Migrants are demonstrating cross-cultural, relational harmony while producing quality coffee together. This is happening at the foot of Mt. Apo in Bansalan, Davao del Sur. PeaceBuilders Community, Inc. (PBCI) have been involved in community organization and training of community leaders. Coffee For Peace (CFP) is the social enterprise company who has been training both the settlers and the indigenous people to become entrepreneurs or “farmerpreneurs”. This is part of the Inclusive Development Program being initiated by PBCI-CFP in strategic regions of the Philippines.
This story was documented by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in cooperation with the Philippine Business for the Environment (PBE).
“UNDP Philippines and the Philippine Business for the Environment published the Transformational Business: Philippine Business contributions to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals based on voluntary reporting and a desk review of the private sector’s contribution to the SDGs. While private sector reporting and efforts to establish processes for applying the SDGs are still being developed in the Philippines, the report highlights a range of interesting initiatives of 75 companies. We have chosen four companies, large and small, established and new, across the Philippines, to tell stories of how they have transformed their business, while their clients and beneficiaries share how these businesses have transformed their lives. There are far more stories from other companies, and we hope to showcase their stories as well in the near future. We hope these stories can serve as an inspiration to other enterprises to maximize the private sector’s contribution to the SDGs for a secure, sustainable and inclusive development in the Philippines.” ~ UNDP-PBE
In 2013, we were invited by the coffee farmers in Sitio Balutakay, Barangay Managa, Municipality of Bansalan in Davao del Sur Province. They heard about PBCI-CFP through our network of peacebuilding advocates in Mindanao. Soon, we were conducting seminars on Peace and Reconciliation (PAR) principles and practices as the framework for inclusive development among the Balutakay coffee farmers. By 2017, the Balutakay Coffee Farmers Association (BaCoFA) are processing global standard quality coffee and are able to export their own green coffee beans to Colorado, USA.
In 2015, the Bagobo-Tagabawa tribal leaders in Managa heard about the relationship between the BaCoFA and the PBCI-CFP. Bae Berna Malang, the Bagobo-Tagabawa Tribal Chieftain, invited us for a dialogue. We invested time doing a series of listening processes with the community. The two-year dialogue resulted in a partnership between PBCI-CFP and the tribal community to start an Inclusive Development Learning Center. With the BaCoFA folks doing the training, the Bagobo-Tagabawa community learned our way of post-harvest coffee processing.
Now, the indigenous owners of the land, the Bagobo-Tagabawa Tribe, are partners with the BaCoFA folks in doing inclusive development initiatives framed in Peace and Reconciliation.
We, at the PBCI-CFP Inclusive Development Program, are grateful to the Creator for this privilege to serve the people as an act of spiritual worship.
We are also thankful for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) for independently-documenting and affirming the Inclusive Development Program entrusted to us by the Creator and by our partners. We are thankful also to the Philippine Business for the Environment (PBE) for their voluntary affirmation of our economic-ecological transformation endeavors.
“I’m glad that the Christians we work with have acknowledged that these lands are really part of the Ancestral Domain of the Bagobo-Tagabawa tribe. This affirmation gives them a new perspective of who we are as the original owners of this land. Our tribal community feels respected in this new way of working together with Christian Settlers.” ~ Bae Berna Malang, Bagobo-Tagabawa Chieftain