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Jakarta Post
The Jakarta Post
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Future typhoon recovery in the Philippines needs '€˜financially stable'€™ farmers

  • The Jakarta Post

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta | Sun, November 17, 2013 | 07:37 pm

Who has the capacity to recover from typhoons is a question of wealth, a young activist has said.

'€œTyphoons do not discriminate between farmers and non-farmers, but they can divide the rich and the poor,'€ said Karen Tuason, a young Filipino activist, while speaking at the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) in Warsaw, Poland, on Saturday.

She further said, '€œWhen the storm surge and the direct relief stage subside, we have to question who has what capacity for recovery'€.

Karen was one of 10 young speakers chosen to open the international UN-backed forum this weekend, during which they showcased their efforts to achieve sustainable landscapes.

The GLF is a side event to the UN Framework Convention for Climate Change'€™s 19th Conference of Parties currently taking place in Warsaw.

Karen is a member of a peasant organization called Task Force Mapalad, which works to improve land tenure opportunities for young farmers, farm workers, and indigenous communities across 11 provinces.

The agrarian reform group supports farmers in Visayas and Mindanao in the Philippines, where feudalism is still deep-rooted.

Karen said people could make a big difference if they owned their own piece of land.

'€œI'€™ve witnessed how the transformation of socio-economic rules '€“ from mere landless farm workers to new land owners and managers '€“ has enabled young farmers to address and improve food security in their communities, raise their household income, gain access to education and healthcare,'€ she said.

However, Karen added, it was also important to raise the business capacity of farmers because merely having their own piece of land was not enough to improve their livelihoods. (ebf)