SARRAT, Ilocos Norte May 11 – Gracing the 38th year anniversary of the Women’s Club Federation of the Municipality of Sarrat here recently Governor Imee R. Marcos encouraged the preservation and promotion of the town’s heritage loom-woven fabric, binakol.
Over the past years, the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN) and the municipal government, in cooperation with various national agencies like the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Technical Education Skills Development Authority (TESDA), have been initiating activities that aims to revive the culture and industry of binakol weaving.
The binakol is specifically produced in Sarrat. It is one of the hand-woven fabrics produced in the province, together with the renowned abel Iloco produced in Paoay. Both fabrics have been used by Filipino designers in making traditional clothing such as terno, maria clara, and filipiniana.
Binakol is also used in making fashionable bags, fans, tablecloths, and other household products.
Noting the increasing demand for local handicrafts, Governor Marcos urged the local binakol weavers to take advantage of her LACASA program, a capital assistance program to supplement women’s capital in running a micro enterprise.
“Sana tuloy-tuloy tayong magtulungan, lalo na para sa livelihood sa ating mga kababaihan. Ituloy natin ang pag-gawa ng binakol. Usong-uso ang binakol saan mang sulok ng mundo. At alam din natin na kailangang magbigay ng karagdagang kita,” said Governor Marcos.
Through the LACASA livelihood program, which started back in 2012, Ilocano women have been given financial assistance amounting to Php10,000 . Until now, the program provides an avenue for women’s economic empowerment.
Governor Marcos also reiterated that aside from the LACASA program, PGIN also has a summer employment program for both the young and elderly. Senior Citizens are now being designated as tourist guides in museums and churches around the province.
“Meron ding iba’t-ibang cash-for-work. Talaga naman, priority ang ating mga senior citizens. Sila ang tutulungan nating una,” she added.
The anniversary of the women’s club coincides with the 7th Binakol Festival of Sarrat, the birthplace of Former President Ferdinand Marcos.