Journal article Open Access

Negritos de Cebu Livelihood and resource management practice

Zanoria, Huberto C.; Villavelez, Rex R.

This study was conducted to describe the different and changing livelihood and resource management strategies of migrant Aetas in Cebu, utilizing mini-ethnographic study methods namely observations, field notes, interviews, analysis of secondary documents and immersions.  The Aetas in Naga, Cebu were originally from Antique then moved down to Barotac Viejo in Iloilo and northern Negros sugar haciendas before settling in Naga, Cebu. From being hunter-gatherers and Swidden agriculturists, they gradually shifted to wage work, men adapted to working in construction sites and women selling basic forest products like charcoal and medicinal herbs. In the process, the different individual and household livelihood conservation approaches were analyzed taking into account specific patterns of resource mobilization and livelihood. Through this migration movement, Aeta women and men experimented with different livelihood strategies. This type of evolution, with wage employment, subsistence farming and dependence on natural resources from the forest, was continued in their resettled area by maintaining contacts with other Aeta groups, which opted to remain in their original abode even in situations of fast-changing environmental changes of degradation and precarious peace and order. This is also expressed in their set of traditions and belief system related resource management. The migrants are undergoing communal changes but are also able to maintain a sense of continuity by maintaining their mobility and being flexible in their livelihood strategies and agro-forestry practices. These are in continuous change which can be supported by developmental interventions.

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