Understanding the Indigenous People’s Rights Act or the IPRA law, the Department of Agriculture in Ilocos thru its Kabuhayan at Kaunlaran ng Kababayang Katutubo or the 4K program conducted a briefing orientation to the 4K beneficiaries of La Union including the DA RFO I personnel at the DA RFO I 5th Floor Conference Room, City of San Fernando La Union on May 31, 2024.

An activity that provides salient information on how the indigenous peoples including the indigenous cultural communities’ approaches of giving various interventions and how are they able to access programs and projects of the various developmental programs and projects, the activity is in partnership with the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Region I.

In her message during the Opening Program, Regional Executive Director Annie Bares reminded the participants to be more proactive in learning their basic rights as a member of the indigenous communities so as to be able to assert these, hence helping them fully realize their needs and expectations as a member of the indigenous communities.

She likewise encouraged the IP participants to share whatever knowledge they would acquire in the briefing so that they too will be informed of these rights helping them to become more active partners of DA and other government agencies and institutions in building the IP communities.

In her discussion about the history, the salient provisions of the IPRA law, Atty. Zoey S. Gacod, IP Rigths Advocacy & Monitoring of Treaty Obligations of the NCIP likewise elaborated the importance of learning IPRA especially in providing programs and projects for IP communities.

According to Atty. Gacod, considered as one major concern that must be addressed before projects shall have to implement in an IP community is the provision of FCIA by which it shall be taken into consideration in the large scale, small scale and any government and line agency proponents.

Meanwhile, in applying for the FCI, Engr. Luis M. Andres, Engineer III of NCIP made an in-depth discussion on the process of application, its procedures and requirements as well as the process of obtaining the decision from the IP community prior to the start of any project being undertaken or implemented in the identified IP communities.

The 4K Program of the DA is a special project which mainly address the indigenous peoples issues and concerns to promote a whole of nation approach in development where no one will be left behind.