|Linking Coastal Communities in the Sulu Archipelago|
A resident of this community of stilt houses in Tawi-Tawi crosses a cement footbridge built by USAID’s Growth with Equity in Mindanao (GEM) Program under its Barangay Infrastructure Project (BIP). The 45-meter footbridge benefits more than 5,500 residents in Balimbing, a barangay in Panglima Sugala, by allowing local growers and traders to efficiently transport their products, and providing safer and quicker access to schools and services. To date, GEM has completed more than 1,000 “BIPs” in conflict-affected areas across Mindanao, under the oversight of the Mindanao Development Authority. These include water systems, grains warehouses and solar dryers, boat landings, trading centers, and roadway upgrades.
Published in Business Mirror, May 18, 2010; Sun Star Davao, May 18, 2010; Daily Zamboanga Times, May 18, 2010; Sun Star Cagayan, May 18, 2010; www.mindanao.com, May 22, 2010; www.businessweekmindanao.com, May 17, 2010