This year's farmers’ festival in Batac, Ilocos Norte, Philippines featured the 2014 Cybervillage Olympics, an IT-focused event organized by the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) and the City Agriculture Office with support from the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI).
Farmer-partners from four barangays in Batac participated in activities such as jingle writing and singing contests, a message relay race, a computer dismantling competition and one on downloading a Rice Crop Manager recommendation, and a quiz bee.
These barangays included Rayuray, Quiling Sur, Baay, and Baligat. Baligat emerged as the overall champion followed by Rayuray as 1st runner-up with Quiling Sur and Baay bagging 2nd runner-up. Prizes included t-shirts and field hats from IRRI plus registered seeds from PhilRice.
“Even if we competed throughout the day, I hope we’ll be able to work together,” said Ms. Fidela P. Bongat, Branch Manager of PhilRice said as the events closed. “This project is nearly ending in August, but we ask that you continue the vision of the project and hope that we’ll have an impact evaluation later so we can see what you’ve learned, what you’ve continued from what you’ve learned, what changes you saw in your fields, and what improvements have happened in your life.
“I’d like to thank the contingent from IRRI who spearheaded the project, Mr. Benedict Pamatmat, and his colleagues. Thank you very much for coming over,” added Bongat.
The Cybervillage Olympics event also included a videoconferencing session with IRRI expert Joel Janiya, who answered questions from farmers on newly released rice varieties that were suited for
different conditions, and others.
The event happened last 5 May 2014, as part of the activities of the Cybervillage project, an initiative funded by the Bureau of Agricultural Research under the Philippine Department of Agriculture.
Learn more about IRRI (www.irri.org) or follow us on the social media and networks (all links down the right column).