Matigsalug tribe to showcase products at expo in Makati
DAVAO CITY, Philippines – A newly-launched line of products of an indigenous group in Mindanao is one of the highlights of a trade expo in Makati City, which begins on Monday, October 2.
The Matigsalug Council of Elders of Marilog District Davao City Incorporated (Macoemaddaci) will exhibit their products under the brand Nasabeka at the Mindanao Trade Expo (MTE) in Glorietta mall, until Thursday, October 5.
Rosevic Cembrano, president of MTE Foundation Incorporated (MTEFI), said her group hopes to find potential institutional markets.
Nasabeka, or unity in the Matigsalug language, was a result of a joint venture among the Department of Trade and Industry, Therma South Incorporated (TSI), and MTEFI. (READ: Gov't, private sector team up to help Mindanao tribe earn a living)
The joint initiative involved year-long training of Macoemaddaci members which began in 2015, where TSI provided P200,000 in seed capital to launch the project.
The council was trained by professional designers. Today, the Nasabeka brand sells handmade accessories and baskets, among others.
"We want this project to be sustainable because we want to preserve the culture of our IPs (indigenous peoples), while letting the world know that they've got talents we can be proud of," Cembrano said in a statement.
The Matigsalug people are among the natives of Davao City, and are said to be the original inhabitants of the Davao River.
But a wave of migration of Filipinos from Luzon and the Visayas since the pre-independence era pushed them to live in the highlands, away from government services.
Earlier at a press conference here in Davao City, Cembrano said Nasabeka is being groomed to meet international standards as they hope to find foreign buyers.
This year's MTE theme is "Connecting Mindanao."
"We are optimistic that they will find new markets," she said. – Rappler.com