DOST grassroots innovation program benefits IP weavers in Bukidnon

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY: Members of the Higaonon Indigenous Peoples (IP) in Bukidnon have received support to improve their weaving practices through the Department of Science and Technology Northern Mindanao's (DOST-10) Grassroots Innovation for Inclusive Development (Grind) project. DOST-10 Assistant Director Virgilio Fuertes said the assistance to the Damugu Weavers Association (DWA), an IP group in Talakag, included an industrial high-speed sewing machine and training on synthetic dyeing, in collaboration with the Philippine Textile Research Institute. "Beyond merely acknowledging and recognizing, DOST under the Grind project supports grassroots innovations to be more competitive," Fuertes, the region's concurrent Grind coordinator, said in a statement on Monday. Under Grind, Fuertes said the IP group's production is expected to rise by 300 percent. Its improved products, he said, will have lasting and more vibrant colors and are expected to raise prices by nine percent. "We are happy because, for five y ears now, this is the first time our organization has received a grant project from the government," Irene Mae Sinhayan, DWA president, said. Before the government aid, Sinyahan, who initiated the formation of the DWA in 2018m said she witnessed the decline of weaving in her community. She said the group consisted only of five weavers at the time but she hopes that with government support, more weavers will emerge to continue their traditions. Source: Philippines News Agency