TwP Update: Finance team mangrove clean up in Siquijor

Isla Lipana & Co. Finance team with folks from DENR Siquijor
 Che leads the team in clearing the mangroves

 Kicking off our firm’s Tourism with a Purpose (TwP), our Finance people, with the assistance of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR),  helped clean up the surrounding areas of mangroves at the Tulapos Marine Sanctuary, the biggest marine sanctuary and home to large mangrove trees in Siquijor last 21 February 2014. Siquijor is an island province located in the Central Visayas region.

Arriving at the Guiwanon Spring Park, the team observed how the local DENR manage and grow the province’s mangrove trees also known as “propagules.” They learned the importance of these trees to the tropical ecosystem.  

Cleaning up a portion of the 14-hectare marine sanctuary
The first TwP project conducted by the Finance team.

Mr. Paul Tumugsok of DENR Siquijor guided the 14-member team to the Sanctuary where they started cleaning up a portion of the area.

According to our Finance people, the area looked like any ordinary mangrove from afar, but on closer look, they noticed all sorts of garbage all scattered around -- plastic bags, nylon strings from nylon sacks, plastic ropes, slippers, shoes, candy wrappers, styro foam, disposable glasses and diapers.

The Sanctuary, which spans around 14 hectares of shoreline, beaches, mangrove forest and coral reefs is home to a number of species of flora and fauna. It was adopted by the Finance group as part of their itinerary for their summer outing. According to Assurance Partner and Finance Head, Che Javier, "For sustainability, residents here should be given an educational campaign on the wider environmental impact of garbage disposal",  since most of the garbage the team collected came from household wastes.

The team wastes no time in getting down to serious work of cleaning up the mangrove area.
Che (center) and Ampy share the contents of the "Philippine Gems" project notebook with Mr. Paul Tumugsok of DENR Siquijor.

 After the clean-up, the team went to see giant Balete Trees and bathed in the Cambugahay Falls. The second day was as busy as the first. The team toured Mt. Bandilaan Nature Park and went spelunking at the Cantabon Cave, where the UNTV Channel had a chance encounter with the team and interviewed Che about the purpose of their trip and the "Philippine Gems" project of the firm. A trip to the Butterfly Garden and Salagdoong beach capped the team's TwP experience.

Siquijor is one of the 25 promising tourist spots that was included in the "PH Gems" corporate responsibility project of Isla Lipana & Co. to showcase the country's emerging tourist destinations.

With reports from Finance Assistant Officer Ampy Misagal