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Coco waste materials provide a source of income

Using coco waste materials as crafting materials has helped one person create a living.

On Friday, Jeeff De Asis, a maker of coconut crafts from Barangay Carit-an in the Patnongon municipality, shared how he got started making items from coconut waste and how it helped him supplement his income as the chief of tanod in Barangay Carit-an.

The Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Antique provincial office invited De Asis to perform a coco craft demonstration at their Obra Antiqueno Trade Fair on Thursday at the Robinsons Mall.

On Nov. 20, 2022 Panubli-on Heritage Fair in Iloilo City, he demonstrated how to make a “hantic,” or red ant lampshade made of coconut shells, which won the Most Innovative Product award.

It was his first time participating in the DTI’s Panubli-on Heritage Fair, and he admitted that he had not anticipated that the lamp shape would win.

He claimed that the lampshade was constructed from two coconut shells that he had amassed and set on wood for support.

De Asis also claimed that the lampshade’s ant-shaped design was a tribute to his native province of Antique, from which it got its name.

Because of the readily available raw materials, coco craft has a lot of promise, according to De Asis.

He claimed that in order to receive startup funding and training, craft makers like himself require assistance from the federal government through the DTI and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

His in-laws, whom he also taught to make key chains, refrigerator magnets, and cellphone holders that they sell, now have work thanks to the craft.

There are currently six to seven people in our barangay that I trained and who are eager to start working with cocoa, but they lack the necessary supplies, he said.

In order to maintain his business, he hoped that they could make use of the Shared Service Facility (SSF) from DTI or the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) from the DSWD.

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