In celebration of the National Volunteer’s Month this December, the Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries (PCAF), the advisory body of the Department of Agriculture (DA) to ensure the success of its programs and activities, will hold its second Volunteers’ Day Celebration on December 14 in Clark, Pampanga.

Part of the highlight of the Volunteers’ Day Celebration will be the awarding of the 2016 Outstanding Agriculture and Fishery Council (AFC) Chairpersons and Coordinators.

The AFCs are PCAF’s mechanism for private sector participation in the development processes of the DA at the regional, provincial and municipal levels.


The annual event aims to recognize the contributions of the private sector partner-volunteers in the agriculture and fishery development processes. It also aspires to encourage the youth to participate in discussions on the issues and concerns of the industry.

“We need to shift the perspective of the youth. They need to realize that the problems in the agri and fishery sector are not only concerns of older people. We need to act double time and inspire the youth to be the new voice and bridge of the farmers, fisherfolks and other stakeholders,” said PCAF Officer-in-Charge Sarah Gutierrez-Cayona.

The winners were selected through a deliberation led by the search’s Board of Judges (BOJ) and National Technical Committee (NTC) based on evaluation criteria and how the nominees valued volunteerism and highlighted the impact of being volunteer-partners in their respective community.

The BOJ is composed of Gomer Tumbali of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Former DA-Undersecretary for Operations and National Agriculture and Fisheries Council, now PCAF, Executive Director Apolonio Bautista. The BOJ is headed by one of the pillars of the Philippine Agriculture, Dr. Nelia Teodoro Gonzalez.

The NTC is led by Philippine Statistics Authority’s (PSA) Deputy National Statistician Romeo Recide. The NTC is consists of reputable personalities from the Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency, Department of the Interior and Local Government-Bureau of Local Government Supervision, Philippine Information Agency, and National Dairy Authority.

“I would like to commend PCAF and its validating team because this search is what we wanted to do long time ago. We dreamed of motivating everyone, especially the youth to be part of the government’s effort to strengthen the agriculture and fishery sector,” said Dr. Gonzalez during the deliberation.

The nationwide search aims to give due recognition to deserving incumbent AFC chairpersons and coordinators at the regional, provincial and municipal levels for their significant achievements.

The criteria for evaluation focused on the significant contribution to the agriculture and fishery industry, performance and impact, leadership, sustained commitment and service to the AFC, creativity, innovativeness and resourcefulness, community involvement, and commitment to an involved family life.

Aside from these, AFC chairpersons should have rendered the same position at least three continuous years of service, while coordinators should also be in their current position for at least five continuous years at the time of nomination to be qualified.

Among the categories for the National Awards are Outstanding RAFC Chairperson; Outstanding RAFC Coordinator; Outstanding PAFC/HUCAFC/ICCAFC Chairperson; Outstanding PAFC/HUCAFC/ICCAFC Coordinator; Outstanding MAFC/CAFC Chairperson, and Outstanding MAFC/CAFC Coordinator.

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