Agta tribe members from Brgy. San Ildefonso in Casiguran share a moment with RD Dr. Julius Caesar V. Sicat, PD Maricel M. Sicat, SRS II Ms. Arian S. Espiritu and CEST staff Mr. Ralph Louie C. Binene during their visit to the area.


 The DOST-Aurora organized a technology needs assessment (TNA) activity last May 27, 2019 in Barangay San Ildefonso in the municipality of Casiguran, intended for members of the Agta tribe. Lending support to the DOST-Aurora Team were RD Julius Caesar V. Sicat and eCEST project staff Ralph Louie C. Binene. The TNA was conducted to identify the issues and problems confronting these indigenous peoples (IPs), particularly on livelihood and health and nutrition.


 Agta people lived in a geographically isolated area with no electricity and the travel to the nearest barangay is 45 minutes by boat and 2 hours by land. Agta people basically survive through gathering food, fishing and some subsistence agriculture. An ocular inspection of the barangay revealed a vast number of sabutan plants growing along the coastal portions of the barangay which has become a business opportunity for some tribe members who have started making baskets and hats, albeit the methods being used are crude and inefficient. The DOST-Aurora team hopes to introduce technology assistance that will improve the process as well as the quality of the products of these IPs and, consequently alleviate their economic standing.