Maguindanao del Norte, BARMM – To strengthen the identification of grassroots innovation in the region, eighteen (18) locals from Sitio Busikong, Brgy. Kibleg, Municipality of Upi, in this province, underwent the SalikLakbay Solutions Mapping Trainer’s Training.

On August 22, 2023, the training activity, which was facilitated by the Ministry of Science and Technology’s Research, Development, and Innovation Division led by Engr. Jandatu Salik, Chief Science Research Specialist, aimed to introduce the Grassroots Innovation for Inclusive Development (GRIND) Program. The program seeks to empower marginalized communities by developing and strengthening their existing Grassroots Innovations (GIs) and establishing the program.

Eighteen college students from Upi Agricultural School were oriented about the GRIND program. They will serve as the Lakbayers or solutions mappers who will embark on the journey of solutions mapping in grassroots communities to identify needs, issues, and opportunities. The goal is to find solutions developed by the people and assess innovations for possible S & T interventions.

During the activity, Engr. Salik expressed high hopes that participants would be able to assist in identifying grassroots innovations in Maguindanao del Norte communities after the training.

“We hope that the participants or solution mappers would help us in identifying grassroots innovations in this province that will be assisted with S & T interventions. Our aim is to strengthen and improve grassroots innovations and empower people in marginalized communities,” Salik said.

During the training, Ms. Amira Salik, Project Assistant III, explained to the Lakbayers the five categories they wanted to identify in the communities. These categories include heritage food, endangered crops, grassroots innovations addressing health, circular economy, and ethnobotanicals. The grassroots innovations present in the community were aimed to be enhanced, supported, and improved to attain sustainability and empowerment in the communities.

She also provided examples of grassroots initiatives in the communities that needed development, improvement, and enhancement, such as the availability of spring water in the area. This situation requires a water pump or innovations to utilize safe water. Improve bamboo products; one example is ‘nigo,’ a flat woven basket that separates grits from rice and corn, cultivates grassroots organic fertilizers, and more.

Ms. Salik shared that after the training, participants/lakbayers would be immersed in identifying grassroots innovations in the area for S & T interventions, either supplied with materials or equipment that will help produce more efficient grassroots innovations.

Grassroots innovation has the potential to drive positive change from the ground up, empowering communities to solve their problems in creative and impactful ways. It also highlights the importance of recognizing and supporting the expertise and knowledge that exist within local communities.


[Information and Communication]