I wish to share with you my write-up which serves as one of the basis of my admission to the 1st ICA/Japan Training Course For Fostering Leaders To Reinforce Business Development Of Agricultural Cooperatives In FY 2014 utilizing the format provided by the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) as shown in the instruction contained in the Nomination Form.
My special thanks to Mr. Jose Romeo B. Ebron and Engr. Sylvia O. Paraguya, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, respectively, of the National Confederation of Cooperatives (NATCCO Network) for nominating me thus giving me a chance to avail of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join the training course sponsored by the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) and funded by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fishery and Forestry (MAFF) of the Government of Japan. I am also grateful to Ms. Cecilia M. Dela Cruz and Francisca Azurin for facilitating my nomination and travel documents.
INSTRUCTION: WRITE-UP OF 500 WORDS. This write-up of maximum 500 words is needed in order to know about your organisation where you are working at present and your own perception of this training programme. This will also help in assessing your knowledge of English. It should be attached to this Nomination Form. The following points should be discussed in the write-up:
i. Name, objectives, organisational structure and a brief description of the activities of the organisation where you are presently working;
ii. In what way the activities of your organisation, directly or indirectly, help the cooperative farmer-members;
iii. [a] Why do you wish to join this Training Course? [b] What are your own personal objectives to participate in this Training Course?
WHY I WISH TO JOIN THE 1ST ICA/JAPAN TRAINING COURSE FOR FOSTERING LEADERS TO REINFORCE BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT OF AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVES IN FY 2014.
Mr. Edelito C. Sangco
Chief Executive Officer
Socorro Empowered People”s Cooperative (SOEMCO)
Navarro, Socorro, Surigao del Norte
The Socorro Empowered People’s Cooperative (SOEMCO) was organized in 1996 by municipal officials and employees of the Municipal Government of Socorro, Surigao del Norte, Philippines. In 2004, the cooperative amended its Articles of Cooperation and By-Laws paving the way for the opening of membership to the community especially the farmers and fisherfolks.
SOEMCO envisions at becoming “A world-class cooperative in a highly progressive and environment-friendly community” with the mission “To empower the low, medium-income and disadvantaged groups by providing equitable, quality financial and non-financial services anchored on the principle of sustainable development.” The highest governing body of SOEMCO is the General Assembly, which is vested with the powers provided by law and its by-laws. The Assembly elects the Board of Directors and the Election and Audit Committee members. The Board of Directors exercises general supervision and control over the affairs of the Cooperative and appoints the Education, Credit, Ethics, Mediation and Conciliation and other Committees. The Board elects from among themselves the Chairperson and the Vice-Chairperson and appoints the Secretary and Treasurer. The Committee members elect from among themselves their Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and Secretary and exercise supervision and control over the affairs of their respective Committees. The Board also recruits and hires the Management Staff, who is in charge of the operations, administrative and financial affairs of the Cooperative and has jurisdiction over them. The Chief Executive Officer, being the Head of the Management Staff, is ably assisted by the Operations Manager, who has jurisdiction over all the operations staff. Also assisting the Chief Executive Officer is the Admin and Finance Manager who has jurisdiction over all the finance and administrative staff of the cooperative.
As of December 31, 2013, the Cooperative had a total membership of 7,743 scattered in six (6) branch offices, wherein, 2,902 are small farmers/fisherfolks; 2,080 are micro and small entrepreneurs; 375 are businessmen and 2,386 are government workers. SOEMCO implements the “Micro Agri Products and Services (MAPS)” financing window for the production needs of the farmer/fisherfolk-members.
Moreover, SOEMCO has implemented various Allied Services catering to the needs of the farmer-members notably: 1. Integrated Coconut Processing Facility with coco nets as main product; 2. Modern Corn Mill that enticed farmers to plant corn in large volumes; 3. Farm Tractor Services that mechanized land preparation and; 5. Swine Breeder Farm with the state-of-the-art Swine Artificial Insemination Laboratory established to enhance the swine bloodlines.
Since my college days up to the time that I worked as an Agriculturist in the government and served in the cooperative movement, I kept on dreaming to travel to Japan and see for myself how agricultural development is going on in the Land of the Rising Sun. It is my sincere objective to enhance, through this training, my knowledge, attitudes and skills about Agriculture as applied to Agricultural Cooperatives in Japan and apply my learning to help in the agricultural and rural development of my country, in general, and in assisting the farmer-members of our cooperative increase their real incomes, in particular.